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NYT: Video Game Fatigue

Filed under: General Gaming | Video Game Politics
Posted by Jeremy on February 6, 2006 10:17 AM
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The New York Times today has an interesting, if obvious, article (Free Sub. Req.) regarding the current state of the video game industry. If you follow the industry in any capacity, you know that there are many dire predictions and poor earnings warnings. Most of the bad news is blamed on the console transition of going from the current generation of machines to the next gens. Allison, the other day, poo-pooed this notion and made a good argument that essentially, the games in 2005 were terrible and all the big games we expected were pushed back into 2006.

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The NYT's article uses the example of Activision's True Crime: New York City, a follow up to their True Crime: Streets of LA. Although this was a "highly anticipated" title in the industry, I really don't think gamers ever cared about it.

The NYT's is correct in assuming that we're fatigued. But, it's a very specific fatigue, focusing primarily on First Person Shooters and GTA knock offs. Most gamers only have enough room in their hearts (and wallets) for one Halo and one GTA. Just because games such as those have sold extrememly well, it doesn't mean that games similar to them will. That notion has been lost on the industry over the past 3 years.

One of the biggest hits of 2005, aside from the plethora of sports games, was LEGO Star Wars, with 3 million units sold. I knew this game would be a hit the second I started playing it. It was everything that other games were not: fun, refreshing, unique, and challenging.

I personally feel that it's not gamers who are fatigued, but rather it's developers and publishers. They are the ones pumping out crappy games and that does indeed get tiresome.






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