Tuesday, December 06, 2005

A Smart Boy and a Sexy Boy. Oooh!

There are certain voices in the video game community that just HAVE to be heard. Many of those voices belong to The Escapist Magazine, but there is another who writes on his own time and his gift is amazing. This man's ability to take a step back and take a critical look at the industry is inspiring. Who am I speaking of? Well, Danc of Lost Garden. While I personally enjoy reading the thoughts of all gamers, Danc truly puts in the time and effort to research what he is interested in. He finds patterns and trends and follows them. He has a true passion, love and respect for gaming, the community and the industry. And it shows in the essays he writes.

I've read several of Danc's past pieces and learned a lot and his newest essay is no different. With the industry reporting an over all drop in sales and the word "crash" on everyone's lipsk Danc takes a look at stats and gives his two cents on what's going to happen.

With a statement like this:

Profit equals return on investment. If profits are low for a product category, then investments in new products will also often be low. Low profitability threatens the entire industry and makes it far less likely for there to be support for artistic innovation.

The culprits for low profitability are slightly more nuanced than the “increasing technology costs” that everyone is so quick to blame. Rational companies only invest in technology when there is competition forcing their hand.

We have hundreds of teams pursuing a mere half dozen highly saturated product categories (aka game genres) in which there are only one or two market leaders possible. It doesn’t help that most current genres are mature and their population is fixed or contracting. Also that ‘rationality’ of game industry management is questionable. Poor management practices, a lack of mature product design processes and a fixation on technology for the sake of technology also contribute.

You KNOW he's someone to listen to.

Check out the entire entry HERE. Its A great read!

On another note, Game Politics is reporting that a political science professor at DePauw Univerisity, named Ted Reuter, has written a an article proclaiming that video game degrees have kidnapped American education. Yep.

He says that video game design degrees are:

yet another sign of the coming of the apocalypse. Schools of higher learning are simply cashing in on a fad that is destructive to society.

Yeah. Great how Reuter himself seems to be "crashing in on a fad" himself, with bashing something he OBVIOUSLY has no real knowledge of. Way to go!
Full story HERE--Check out Ted's pic. He's a sexy boy! MmmMmm!

UPDATE: Game Politics just posted THIS story that give a look at the other side of the coin. HOORAY!!


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