The Infamous Noob

May 22, 2010

Huh? Who are you?

Filed under: Games — Tags: , — infamousnoob @ 1:18 am

So, the world is a-changin’. Not only is this year filled with lots of high profile game releases (StarCraft and WoW: Cataclysm), but there are tons of things moving and shaking. What I’ve noticed most is what’s available on Steam.

I downloaded Steam a couple years ago to play around with some of my brother’s games and test drive some demos and whatnot, but never really got “hooked”. I recently took a second look at it, what with all the DRM fiasco that is Ubisoft and the required internet connection, and really liked what I saw. The ‘Buy This Now Cuz It’s Cheap’ weekend sales are awesome, and I picked up both Civilization IV: Complete and Torchlight for $10 each instead of the usual $20+. This is the studio’s response to used game sales, and it’s great for everyone. Except used game sellers, I guess.

It also opens the door for indie developers to get a game out in the market for cheap without confining themselves to a weird platform (I’m talking to you, iPhone). Especially now that Steam is Mac and Windows friendly (well, in the case of the Mac version they’re more like¬†acquaintances, but these things take time) anyone with an urge to slap together something can immediately reach an audience of. . .a lot. Some very large number, I’m sure.

The point is that the environment is right for competition to spring up. Now, nothing’s going to come along and be a “WoW killer” or anything like that, but the only way to push any field to be better is to tell the team inventing new stuff that someone else will have it first. This is why Apple hasn’t really done anything new in 15 years, and Microsoft was doomed from the start. Neither one of them has any serious competition.

With the huge amount of money to be made in video games these days, it’s a safe bet that competition to be “The Gamer’s Game Company” will get pretty heated. In fact, I would say that the time is perfect right now for someone with something fresh to bring to the table to do it well and get the name out there. I’m eagerly awaiting the moment that I can say “Who is this new studio?! And how did they make such an awesome game?” – even if it’s not something I’m directly involved in.

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