When I was younger and penniless, I had all the time in the world to play games, but never the money to buy all the new releases. I was required to make the most of a newly acquired game to get me by until the next birthday or present-appropriate holiday that would land me a new game. I would replay the same game multiple times, mastering all the nuances until I tired of it.
|Steam Greenlight encourages independent
game development whole heartedly!
Not only that, but now that I am a working adult I can afford to purchase most of the games I want within reason. This, in combination with the sheer amount of quality video games out there, and the fact I work 40+ hours a week, I have an overabundance of entertainment that seems inexhaustible. Despite my devotion to depleting the queue, I just can’t do it.
|THQ is responsible for
some of my favorite games!
Unfortunately, while this game development climate is good for the consumer, it has proven disastrous for some development companies. Even seemingly successful game development studios have gone out of business. A good example of this is the bankruptcy of THQ back in December 2012. THQ always made quality games, but their games usually did not sell well enough to be profitable overall. This is due to the ever-increasing development costs of games as the industry progresses; big time game development becomes a riskier gamble as stakes get higher and higher.
This trend has spawned smaller studio development that brings us shorter, but quality, games. I have mentioned a few of them: Dust, Bastion, and Mark of the Ninja. These are more bite-sized game servings without the large monetary gamble of bigger development companies. The lower cost of these games also gives gamers another option besides $60 retail games.
Overall, I’m very excited with the direction the gaming industry is going. There’s a lot of different players out there, large and small. We’ve got independent and smaller development studios getting full support from the console developers (for once), and we have some of the bigger Triple A companies, like Ubisoft and EA, still willing to gamble the big bucks by developing ridiculously-budgeted games in the hopes of another seller like Call of Duty or Grand Theft Auto. While I may never be able to play all of the video games, it’s not going to stop me from trying!