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We are at an exciting point in time, with games set to get bigger and better

Michael Smith, Blogger

September 7, 2017

4 Min Read

Games are getting bigger and better. New technologies are being discovered, new ground is being broken and now is the perfect time to be a gamer. A few old-school gamers out there will disagree with me and I know that because I am one of those.

I can’t tell you how many times I have complained about the gaming industry in the last year or two. I waited years for the new Mortal Kombat and it angered me that the game cost $50 and wasn’t even finished. You couldn’t unlock characters by beating the game like you could in the old days, you had to buy them. This wasn’t the only game that did that either and when you add the state of mobile gaming to the mix, it just looked like games were getting worse.

Assassins Creed, Call of Duty and many other games just seemed to be part of the problem. In 2015, 2016 and 2017 they were releasing games in series like this at a rate of 1 per year, charging $50+ for games that were not complete, requiring serious patching and offering extras that could only be bought, not won. And don't even get me started on “multiplayer” games where the “multiplayer” only counts if you have a $30 subscription to Xbox Live or PSN, and are prepared to buy extras to keep up with fellow players.

It was bad and it has annoyed me no end. But I have seen a light at the end of this murky tunnel. As a developer myself, I can see when we are in the midst of a big change and over the last few months that’s what I’ve experienced. In 2018, we could be set for a big turnaround and this is why.

The Change is Now

One of the things that made me realize that we are at the precipice of change is that my partner, who is not really a big gamer, and my daughters, who are definitely not, have started to play PS4 and Xbox Games. In the past, they were all for mobile games and Facebook games. As someone who makes these games for a living I am not going to diss them. But because I make them I know that they are geared toward casual users and not gamers. They are created to play on reward centers, to be easy to get into and play and, ultimately, to lead to in-game purchases.

I got my girls into games by showing them Uncharted 4. They fall in love with it, after which we started looking for similar games. The most amazing thing about this is is that my partner will play while they watch and they treat it as a film. For them, it’s a communal thing, much like watching a movie, only they’re actually enjoying it more.

Storylines in games used to be terrible. They couldn’t match movies. But these days movies are recycled nonsense. Big blockbusters that have no integrity and that just don’t hook you in. They have taken a step back while games have taken a step forward. And I know my family is not alone in this. My friends have experienced similar things, initially getting their kids/partners interested purely so they could have an excuse to play their games, only for those families to get heavily into it.

The gaming companies seem to have realized this as well. The Call of Duty franchise and the Battlefield franchise are taking huge leaps forward with story-based games and have finally stopped regurgitating old rubbish. Assassins Creed has finally taken a a break from similar games in order to produce Origins, which is set to bring an epic twist to the old story.

And then you have games like Heavy Rain 2, The Last of Us 2, Life is Strange 2, Red Dead Redemption 2 and countless more. All of these follow on from fantastic games that took a lot of time and effort. Games like this wouldn’t have been made in the last couple years before developers didn’t think they didn’t to create big money games to earn. 

Going Forward

The gamers have spoken on this one and after looking like we could have gone the way of amped-up mobile games, where you could only play through Facebook and needed a subscription to do so, we’re finally going back to big, meaty console games.

This is an exciting time to be alive. And when you look at the work that Until Dawn creators Supermassive Games are doing to make games more accessible to all of the family, we’re just a few steps short of bringing home automation tech into games and essentially linking our lives with the worlds we see on screen.

These games are brilliant, this tech is awesome, and it’s super exciting. It’s worth checking out if you haven’t seen this before. Games like this make developers like me very excited for the future.

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