Is the Games Industry about to Crash?

I read an article earlier in the month entitled ‘5 Reasons the Video Games Industry is about to crash’. The article provides 5 key reasons to support the subject. While I don’t necessarily agree with all the reasons provided, it is a good read and I do agree with some of the reasons provided.

One reason given that I totally agree with is the increased budget of games development. The top games often now have budgets in excess of movies. Like big budget movies, this is never a guarantee of success. Further, games in development can have ideas changed in the middle of development. This can add significant sums to a game’s original budget. Some of the big budget games have been spectacular failures and failed to achieve financial breakeven. Increasingly a few successes are subsidizing many failures.

There is also a suggestion that many in charge of games companies do not know the gaming industry. This is not necessarily a bad thing. At some point every sector needs to mature and become more businesslike in its approach. Having business and finance professionals in charge of games companies is not necessarily a reason for the poor performance of games. Having worked with developers, programmers and designers are just as likely to contribute to the increase in budgets because they want to include every nicety that has little or no major impact on the functionality of the game. What is I believe is the problem is a lack of understanding from the business and finance ‘suits’ on the technical nature of games development. This is also the case with the technical team of developers who do not understand enough on the importance of remaining within budget.

One further observation is the over reliance on a few good games to keep companies in the industry successful. Once a publisher finds a successful game, they milk that cow, then milk it some more until sometimes they damage the franchise. It can be argues this is what happened to Call of Duty. I have played all Call of Duty released and I can genuinely say the last one released was not of a similar standard to previous releases.
As I said in the opening paragraph, the article makes some very good points and ones that should give those in the industry food for thought.


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