Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Oh Please

Take this with a grain of salt, since it is a humour site, but Cracked.com has an article that Captain Osmotic pointed out to me which states video gaming is dead. Why is it dead oh wise Cracked? It's dead because of Project Natal, now Kinect.

Here's a gem of a quote from the piece:

"The problem is that video game players simply won't keep playing without a new gimmick every five years or so. Where people have been happy watching celluloid movies for like 80 straight years, for whatever reason gamers won't keep playing games unless given a completely new format every half decade."

There is so much fail in this one little snippet that surely the whole thing is a bunch of mocking hyperbole, right?

The movie industry has not been static. In fact movies went through many radical phases that have given us what we have today from the inclusion of sound, censorship in the 1930's, the development of economically feasible colorization, the death of the studio system (here I mean the basically indentured servitude status of many early stars), the rise and fall of early 3-D, the return of adult subject matter, the rating system, surround sound, CGI, digital, and the return of 3-D.

When television became widely commercially available in the 1950's many thought it would be the total death of the film industry. Yet, here we continue on today thanks to the MANY innovations in film-making. This is not even counting the home market of Beta, VHS, Laser Disc, DVD, Blu-Ray. Oh no! How terrible. Watching movies at home must be dying due to all these changes. Oh, and netflix. Kill it. Kill it with fire!

Now, what about the second half of that quote? "...for whatever reason gamers won't keep playing games unless given a completely new format every half decade."

Let's look at the facts. People have NEVER stopped playing the older generations of games and they NEVER will. Side-scrolling games have continued and you only need look to the popularity of games like Braid and Super Mario Wii to understand why game developers make the decision now to release side-scrollers like the upcoming Batman game. Meanwhile, innovations in gaming are welcome and gamers buy the titles that come out that look playable and fun.

It's not gamers that stop playing and demand new forms of entertainment. Video game companies, console companies, and the like develop new products to MAKE MONEY. It's a pretty simple fact of living in our society that I'm not sure how anyone could have missed. The competition to get our money means that we gamers win because the market kills off most bad ideas. (Hello, virtual boy. Good-bye Virtual Boy!)


  1. I like Cracked, but I agree...they kind of missed the mark on this. To say movies haven't evolved is to overlook things like the, oh I don't know the addition of sound perhaps? Color? Guns?

    Sure, controllers haven't changed, but the way we interact with tv has--DVR/hulu/etc.

    I think they were on target about one thing:

    "Awesome! Nothing can go wrong with that, as long as you remember to stay perfectly still and silent while your movie is playing. If you're not clear on why random conversation or ambient sound in the room would fuck up your playback, I'm guessing you've never used a voice operated device in your life."

    I'd like to see how that part plays out...

  2. There is a lot of truth in this post! We definitely keep our old games and systems around and keep up with the new when the games are something we really enjoy. And yes, the movie and tv industry also keep moving and changing and we keep joining in, trying to keep the good innovations alive and the and ones out (umm, 3D, again? really?).

    As for that Virtual Boy ... we may have one of those bought off ebay ...


  3. :) I really wanted Virtual Boy when it came out. I used to play it in Toys R'Us. It didn't really catch on.

    I agree with some of the Cracked article and have my skepticism about Kinect, but it's not the end of gaming.

    Thanks for the excellent comments!

  4. Your posts always kick ass, but this one especially kicked some MAJOR ASS. Kudos! =D And as I'm sure you know, I still think that NES and SNES are the best systems...not sure they'll ever be topped.

  5. Yeah, what Luke said! And now I'm inspired to break out my PS2 after work today. Probably won't happen, though, as the boy toy and I are in the middle of a Charmed marathon. But still. I'm INSPIRED to do so. That counts, right? :D

  6. Guess I'm with Spring and Luke. Still have my NES working as well as an Intelivision 2. No one can take my 'old' systems away, let alone get me to stop messing with them.