But recently my eye caught this article at pcworld.com , published on the release day of GTA IV it asked the question Grand Theft: What's Left in its Tank?
The article muses on the expected sales success that GTA IV will garner. Will be sustainable long term? "I think all the preorder programs now in place for these top titles really end up taking the long-term sales out of many games," said Michael Goodman, director of digital entertainment at Yankee Group. "So I don't think 'Grand Theft Auto IV' is going to have those kind of legs."
In the article Halo 3 is also put up as an example of the burn-bright and die young current market: Exhausting 67% of its total U.S. sales-to-date in its first month, and though NPD games analyst Anita Frazier said the game still is selling 100,000 copies a month, it no longer is in the tracking firm's top 10 monthly charts.
A lot of readers will be sagely nodding their heads knowing that this is the way of the world, our need for the next biggest thing in the world of gadgets and entertainment is insatiable with the gap between the new becoming shorter each year.
How do people in the industry feel about this? Radioactive IT did a quick straw poll.
Developers; those head-down-bum-up folks that put together the zero's and ones, producing increasingly sophisticated titles for the hungry masses. Surely if anybody is going to shake their head with disappointment about the fate of their art, it is these tireless folks.
“Actually it never occurs to us when creating a game that its shelf life is finite.” says Mark Morrison, Game Designer at Aussie studio Blue Tongue. “We're just too busy making it as good as we can to consider what will happen once it's out there in the world! If you get the gameplay right, it will hold the player's interest. Our current project (De Blob, for Wii) is themed around color and music, and we hope the good feeling and funky music that it generates is something people will keep coming back to, even when newer games have arrived.”
Lack of skilled resources in the industry is contributing to the focus on work in Developer land.
At a recent discussion around the future of gaming, CEO of Infinite Interactive, creators of the excellent PuzzleQuest, Steve Fawkner lamented the lack of suitably skilled staff; “If I could hire them, I would be able to put them immediately to work on a number of projects, and boost the companies income by 50 percent”
Publishers; the ones with the second hardest job; marketing the finished product and making judgement calls on everything from price to bundling of games, lumping expansion sets into 'gold' editions, or pushing a title into the cheaper 'classics' range.
Find out the Publisher response starting page Two.
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Having failed to grow up Bantick continues to pursue his childish passions for creative writing, interactive entertainment and showing-off through adulthood. In 1994 Bantick began doing radio at Melbourne’s 102.7 3RRRFM, in 1997 transferring to become a core member of the technology show Byte Into It. In 2003 he wrote briefly for the The Age newspaper’s Green Guide, providing video game reviews. In 2004 Bantick wrote the news section of PC GameZone magazine. Since 2006 Bantick has provided gaming and tech lifestyle stories for iTWire.com, including interviews and opinion in the RadioactivIT section.