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Topic: The future of the gaming industry

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MasterJay

Today, I read this article https://www.thesixthaxis.com/2019/06/13/who-cares-whos-won-e3... and agree with most of what the author says

I think we really need to evaluate where and how we game, and how the plans of gaming companies will affect that both postivitly and negatively in the coming generation (which, the switch is part of if I'm not mistaken?). Do we want to rely on streaming services and subscriptions to play? Is that plausible for our lifestyle? I just want to remind everyone to think of how this will affect them before signing up for every subscription out there and calling them "the future of gaming"

I myself know I want to own my games, and access them whether or not i have wifi or data. I definitely don't want to pay for more subs every year in addition to nso, Netflix, and Amazon prime. I want to go all digital eventually, but also want to own those games, and gift and download them as I please.

So, think of how your ideal gaming experience would be, and share it. It's ok if there's different opinions, as these options fit multiple lifestyles. Just make sure to know that your solution isn't the only one. I look forward to seeing what you guys think.

Well excuuuse me princess

CanisWolfred

I just so happen to have an artistic rendition of the what seems to be the most likely trajectory of gaming based on current market trends:

Untitled

I am the Wolf...Red
Backloggery | DeviantArt
Wolfrun?

3DS Friend Code: 1418-6849-7569 | Nintendo Network ID: CanisWolfred

Anti-Matter

@MasterJay
"how your ideal gaming experience would be"

1. Physical Rules or Busted !

2. No 18+ games, No Streaming, No digital download only, No unnecessary patches, No butchered down ports, No Handphone games, No Free digital games, No Wannabes, No dudebro games, No expansion packs, No pay 2 Win mechanism, No Online only games.

My Top 6 games :
1. Dance Dance Revolution series (100)
2. Dragon Quest Builders 2 PS4/Switch (95)
3. The Sims 4 PS4 + All contents (93)
4. Portal Knights PS4 (90)
5. Final Fantasy VIII PS1 (90)
6. Animal Crossing New Leaf: Welcome Amiibo 3DS (89)

Switch Friend Code: SW-8364-7166-5608 | 3DS Friend Code: 2638-4872-0879 | Nintendo Network ID: TAGunderground

Dezzy

What Anti-Matter said. Except the exact opposite.

It's dangerous to go alone! Stay at home.

skywake

MasterJay wrote:

Do we want to rely on streaming services and subscriptions to play? Is that plausible for our lifestyle? I just want to remind everyone to think of how this will affect them before signing up for every subscription out there and calling them "the future of gaming"

I think you're making the mistake of assuming it's an all or nothing thing. Also same as the writer of the article you're grouping very, very different things into the same category. As an example Google Stadia is a streaming service with a monthly fee that you have to then buy the games ontop of. They mention Humble Bundle Monthly in the same breath which is a no-obligation monthly distribution of Steam codes. Entirely different.

I also find it odd that the writer of the article brushed off entirely how good a value some of these deals are. As if somehow that doesn't factor into this. As far as I'm concerned value is the ONLY consideration for most of these. Especially with gaming where I don't see a subscription as being any more convenient than buying the game digitally. And I include Google Stadia in that point.

This is even true with Netflix and Spotify. I pay for Netflix because $14AU a month makes sense compared to $15-50AU for a BluRay, $50-100AU/mo for Pay TV, or ~$5AU for a rental. But with music streaming I don't see the same value. For me ~$12/mo isn't really worth it given I already have a library of ~5000 tracks I like already. If I see something new I like it's usually only ~$15AU to purchase outright, frequently less. I've brought 9 albums in the last year for ~$100AU, between that and Youtube/Spotify Free I don't see how a subscription would be a "better value" so I don't pay for one.

As far as "the future of gaming" goes? I don't think streaming games is going to be the way forward and I've said this many times. I do see more subscription services like Humble Monthly popping up given that distributing digital content has almost zero cost relative to the physical model. I don't feel this is a bad thing, infact I see it as the same as the used game bin model except that we're actually paying the developers for their work.

In terms of "safe" high budget releases? This is nothing that the movie industry hasn't already gone through. Same with the misleading and flashy trailers. Hell, it' something the movie industry still sees. But focusing on this ignores the fact that 15 years ago ALL we had was high budget releases. I remember when the original New SMB launched and a fair amount of the hype was that it was a 2D platformer that was not a cheap kids movie tie-in. Now we're getting Link's Awakening remastered in HD which sits alongside Shovel Knight, Hollow Knight, CupHead and Crypt of the NecroDancer. Pretty much all because of digital distribution.

Also it's very, very easy to look at the way things are now and complain about game companies extracting money via subscriptions & season passes. Things which weren't possible back in the day. But I would also point to this game catalogue from 1993:
Untitled
Those prices are expensive even without an inflation calculator. But for the sake of accuracy
$29AU in 1993 -> $53AU (for the clearance NES games)
$79AU -> $125AU (the clearance NES also the Game Gear titles)
$109AU -> $195AU (Moral Kombat, Jurasic Park, Mario Paint)
$350AU -> $625AU (The current gen console + Game bundles)

For comparison today most games are $60-80AU new. The Switch is currently selling for $400AU while you can get an XBOne S for $300AU, $350AU for the PS4 and ~$500AU for the X and Pro models. This with free to play games existing and yes some of these titles being a "buy once, pay a bit more later for some DLC" games as a service deal. But even though all of that is significantly cheaper than it used to be people make thread after thread about how much they didn't want to pay $30AU a year for Switch online. A service which has given me a discount on a couple of new releases, Tetris 99 and a small library of NES titles.

Just face the facts, we have it pretty good in 2019

Edited on by skywake

Some good Aussie musics: King Gizzard, Pond, TFS
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

Grumblevolcano

Pretty much Xbox Scarlett's concept but in hybrid form. The idea that the entirety of current gen's games and as many games from further back gens as possible are playable on the next gen system at no extra cost but with the extra bonus of being able to play anywhere.

Grumblevolcano

Switch Friend Code: SW-2595-6790-2897 | 3DS Friend Code: 3926-6300-7087 | Nintendo Network ID: GrumbleVolcano

Cotillion

The games are what matter to me.
I really don't care if they are physical, digital or streaming as long as they work properly and I can play.
I used to collect, but I've come to wonder what the point is. My old Zelda, Contra, Final Fantasy carts and discs are just collecting dust.
I buy 100% digital on PC, mostly all digital on Switch and will probably give Stadia a whirl at some point (my internet is many times better than the 4K requirement, so it's not an issue). I'm curious about it and want to try it myself before passing judgment. Subscriptions aren't forever. People get HBO just to watch one show while it airs, then cancel. I can do the same thing with game sub services. I can subscribe to Ubisoft, play what I want, then cancel.
That works for me, but options will always be available. Music has been digital for a very long time and you can still buy CDs and vinyl. Video streaming is huge and you can still buy DVD and Blu-ray. They survived the introduction of new delivery mediums and so too will games.
Heck, gaming already has companies popping up seemingly dedicated to bringing physical versions of games that were previously only digital. As long as people are buying, someone will be selling.
If I use digital and streaming and you don't, but we both have the option, then who cares?

The future of the gaming industry isn't nearly as distressing as the gaming population being far more concerned over delivery mediums than the actual games themselves.

skywake wrote:

Especially with gaming where I don't see a subscription as being any more convenient than buying the game digitally. And I include Google Stadia in that point.

I think the point of convenience from Stadia is the lack of needing a specific piece of hardware. No hundreds of dollars up front for a console or PC. If what you have will already run Chrome, you're good to go to play current gen games on crappy outdated hardware and it still looks and plays nearly as good.
Personally, I'd love to see a Stadia app on Switch. All my Nintendo games plus PC games that it either can't run or just aren't coming all on my favourite system would be amazing.

Cotillion

skywake

Cotillion wrote:

skywake wrote:

Especially with gaming where I don't see a subscription as being any more convenient than buying the game digitally. And I include Google Stadia in that point.

I think the point of convenience from Stadia is the lack of needing a specific piece of hardware. No hundreds of dollars up front for a console or PC. If what you have will already run Chrome, you're good to go to play current gen games on crappy outdated hardware and it still looks and plays nearly as good

I said it when OnLive launched and I think it's even more true today than it was then. Streaming games is a solution in search of a problem. Sure you've identified the one advantage it has in that there's a lower barrier for entry because you can get away with much lower spec hardware. But console hardware has been getting progressively cheaper over time and there's a constant diminishing returns for higher specs. The more possible game streaming becomes over time is the less appealing it becomes as hardware improves and drops in price.

I subscribe to Netflix not because the movies look better or because there's a lower barrier for entry. I subscribe to Netflix because it's convenient when I don't necessarily know what to watch. Especially when I'm likely to only watch something once. With games it's not really much of a hassle to wait for a game to download in the background. Being able to "play it instantly" is definitely more convenient but not that much.

In any case it's all academic, I highly doubt they'll launch a Stadia server close enough to Perth Australia for the latency to ever be reasonable. Certainly not anytime soon.

Some good Aussie musics: King Gizzard, Pond, TFS
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

Octane

Anti-Matter wrote:

No Free digital games

I'm not even going to attempt to question this...

Octane

bitleman

Octane wrote:

Anti-Matter wrote:

No Free digital games

I'm not even going to attempt to question this...

You know what they say: when it's free it means the product is you.

bitleman

GrailUK

@Octane Well, while he pays a subscription he gets his wish. There is no such thing as a free game if you are paying a subscription.

I never drive faster than I can see. Besides, it's all in the reflexes.

Switch FC: SW-0287-5760-4611

Cotillion

@skywake I think streaming is going to carve out it's own niche as Switch has.
There is a market of people out there for whom the hardware is a barrier. I know people who see my games on my PC and are interested in the games themselves, but have no interest on building or dropping that kind money on one themselves. Being able to do it on a device they already have opens up their access to it.
Plus there's the mobile market. Mobile games are trash. Sure there's some gems, but generally speaking a vast majority of them are awful. People can play decent games on their phones and tablets.
I don't believe at all that streaming will become the dominant medium for gaming. But streaming does provide a viable option for many people and someone will provide to that market. Which is why I don't get why people are against it before it even really launches and it's not something they have to use. It's just an option for those whom it works for. It's pretty subjective to different needs and more options to get more people gaming is not a bad thing.
I have my doubts Stadia will be the one to do that long term, though. Google is known for forgetting about and dropping anything that isn't a super massive success, so a niche market is probably not the place for them. Microsoft is more likely, I think, providing a streaming option alongside the rest of their ecosystem.

Edited on by Cotillion

Cotillion

skywake

@Cotillion
I'd argue Google Stadia is more about marketing and R&D than an actual viable product. Especially in the medium to long term. The tech trends aren't in their favour nor are the simple physics equations in terms of latency and bandwidth.

Of course it's easy in theory to say "the cost of console hardware is a barrier" and it is. But if you actually want to play games it's not that big of a barrier. When you talk about "the cost barrier" of consoles remember that a console is $300-500AU. There's currently an XBOne S bundle for $299AU with 4 games. When a new TV costs $1000AU+, new phones cost $500AU+ and new games cost $50AU+ each? $300AU is not a huge barrier

The ability to play simpler games with just your phone or TV? Even this is going to wear thin pretty quickly as TVs and phones continue to have better hardware inside. For example the new TV I got earlier this year had a racing game controlled by the directional buttons on the remote with early 360 era visuals pre-installed. Complete garbage but interesting as a throw-away tech demo. Nintendo themselves are releasing mobile games that are, visually, well above the 3DS. And when products like the Switch exist it's not hard to imagine Sony or Samsung releasing a line of TVs with a "console" built in.

We live in a world where you can play games on everything already. A world where the power of those things that can play games is constantly increasing. I don't see the value in the future of a service sold on rendering games at a distance when the "low power" thing in my hands is both capable and has a direct, full bandwidth link to the display & speakers......

Edited on by skywake

Some good Aussie musics: King Gizzard, Pond, TFS
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

Luna_110

Considering there's no TBD date for launching Stadia in Latin America, and that a lot of people here still have cooper connections, streaming is not the future of gaming for this region.

I have a chronic lack of time, for everything.

Now playing: Okami HD, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe.

Switch Friend Code: SW-8536-9884-6679 | 3DS Friend Code: 0877-2091-1186 | Nintendo Network ID: Luna_cs

skywake

@Luna_110
Assuming the best infrastructure possible every ~100km is an additional 1ms of latency. As someone who lives in a city of 2mill people 2500km from the next nearest city (which itself is only ~1.3mill people) I'm not holding my breath. Especially when the max internet speed I can get is 23Mbps.

It's an idea that's potentially kinda viable in the short term for some places. But because of that simple equation it's not going to even have the theoretical potential to be dominant in the medium term outside of Japan and particular parts of the US. But the real kicker, as I said in the previous post, is that it gets less and less attractive as mobile hardware improves.

By the time it's super easy to do nobody will care.

Edited on by skywake

Some good Aussie musics: King Gizzard, Pond, TFS
"Don't stir the pot" is a nice way of saying "they're too dumb to reason with"

Silly_G

As long as games are riddled with DRM, I will never embrace downloads, especially on consoles. All of the data on Switch is encrypted, so I cannot, say, back up patch data so that I will always have a complete version of a partial-cartridge game. I have only bought two such games so far, being DOOM and L.A. Noire, the latter being out of print in Australia (as far as I am aware), and although I had paid more than what I was willing to spend on such a scummy release, I did cave in (at AU$28, sealed) though I would have paid AU$80 on day one if the entire game were on the cartridge. And Wolfenstein II aside (which I am more inclined to grab on PC now that I have a gaming PC), I doubt that I'll buy another partial-cartridge game again.

In most situations, I would overwhelmingly preference a Switch version over a PC version. Having played DOOM on both PC and Switch, I do not consider the compromises to impede on my enjoyment of the game (partial-cartridge crap aside). But publishers ought to release their games on larger cartridges as many of the compromises that are made tend to be systematic of miserliness as opposed to providing the best possible experience on the platform (for example, Just Dance 2017 shipped on a 16GB cartridge, and subsequent installments have shipped on 8GB cartridges, and the visual disparity in the heavily compressed videos is immediately apparent). I am not optimistic that they will, but I say this to illustrate that many of the compromises are not purely technical in nature.

With that said, if publishers continue to pull partial-cartridge crap on us, and if it so happens to be a game that I am interested in, then I will grab the PC version (if one is available) instead as I can at least back those up to a Blu-ray disc (or two) for prosperity and to save on download time in the future (GTAV took hours to install from disc and would have been a hell of a lot faster had it shipped on one or two Blu-ray discs instead).

I browsed through GOG yesterday and was quite impressed by the selection, but there weren't too many options as far as more recent games are concerned. In fact, I would be tempted to double-dip on some games, especially more recent ones, if a DRM-free or Windows 10 compatible version were made available. I was surprised to see the entirety of Spore and several SimCity games from EA/Maxis, but no sign of the original The Sims (which plays without a hitch on Windows 10) or the The Sims 2 games (and the spin-off The Sims Stories series). I for one would love a DRM-free downloadable version of The Sims 2 that I can back up to a Blu-ray over installing 26 discs. I have already made a 2-DVD set over a decade ago containing the complete The Sims 1 games (cutting down from 11 CDs, though I could have burned the set to a single dual-layer DVD), so I would love to be able to do the same for The Sims 2. I still play the original Sims games regularly. EA started killing the franchise halfway through the lifespan of The Sims 2, and they have lost a very loyal customer in me since.

As far as next-generation physical distribution is concerned, the twins can adopt Ultra HD Blu-ray discs (latter Xbox One models already have), which come in 66GB and 100GB varieties (there is also a 50GB Ultra HD disc, but I doubt that they would be used over a regular 50GB Blu-ray unless the Ultra HD disc allows for gaming directly from the disc without installation, which is highly unlikely considering the limitations of optical disc media).

And let's hope that The Witcher 3 sets a precedent so that publishers are not so reluctant to use them. But with the customer base being unwilling to spend more than US$60 for AAA release (aggravatingly hypocritical considering how many will pay $100+ for the addition of useless trinkets and doodads) I can't say I blame them completely, but those of us with a more conservative/preservationist mindset, we are often at a disadvantage.

Edited on by Silly_G

Silly_G

3DS Friend Code: 2578-3134-0847 | Nintendo Network ID: sillygostly

JihyoFanboy

Can we just not have lootboxes, crunchtimes and EA in general?

JihyoFanboy

Magician

We're quickly heading towards a time when gamers pick subscription services rather than platforms. It's the inevitable all-digital future. Gamers will still have options though. 1) Embrace it, pay for services for continued access to games, until the licenses run out and the games on that service are delisted. 2) Stick with retro, those physical games you bought that don't have a required download update will be good until they're damaged beyond repair. 3) Emulation, ethically a grey area. 4) Exit the hobby.

Edited on by Magician

Switch Physical Collection - 369 games (as of July 20th, 2019)
Currently playing: Dragon Quest Builders 2 (Switch) Mary Skelter (PS Vita) Borderlands The Pre-sequel (PS4)
Favorite Quote: "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." -Arthur C. Clarke

kkslider5552000

Nintendo will release a game where Mario jumps and also does a new ability too! It will look more technically impressive than the last one most likely and be critically acclaimed. Also, their new smell-o-vision gimmick will be utiilized for certain section to sniff out collectables shaped like planets. I'll avoid the obvious joke.

Meanwhile, EA's latest president will cut off the heads of small children, leading to a small decline in Madden sales for a year thanks to internet backlash. They'll promise not to cut off the heads of any more small children.

oh and VR will be mainstream for a few years before vanishing to niche again, and Microsoft's 3rd attempt at a streaming platform will promise to not have the same massive lag issues 90% of users experienced.

Edited on by kkslider5552000

Bioshock Infinite Let's Play, please watch and enjoy!:
LeT's PlAy BIOSHOCK < Link to LP

3DS code: 2878 - 9709 - 50...

tendonerd

@skywake toys r us was always and still continues to be notoriously expensive with most everything. They also do exclusives and buy one get one half off to make up for their silly high prices. I'm happy every other store with same prices put them under.

tendonerd

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