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Worries about the current state of the industry

Content of the article: "Worries about the current state of the industry"

/u/virtualpig posted an interesting thread at which made me think "what exactly is worrying about the industry today?"

Before reading my novel, my question is this: what are some curiosities and worries that you have about what the future looks like? I welcome responses to the following, but I'm really curious as to what everyone else thinks.

One thing, for instance, is the advancement of technology and its correlation to cost. Graphics have gotten absolutely amazing. That's cool, but…how much does it cost to utilize that? There is a reason that indie games generally look like their 8 or 16 bit ancestors. As graphics get most advanced, you need more and more advanced skills for creating hyper detailed models and environments. This drives up the cost of production. When you drive up the cost of production, publishers start getting more and more thirsty, which causes them to start interfering in development and sorta ripping out experimentation and inserting predatory practices. On the other hand, there was the indie boom a few years ago, which has sort of fizzled out. Add that to overexposure to small games from steam and mobile services and open mindedness towards more minimalistic styling has become far reduced. I know my eyes roll whenever I see yet another 16-bit styled roguelike or metroidvania title, which makes me feel bad since so much goddamn work goes into developing them. This increases the risk of bigger studios scaling back. It wouldn't be as big a deal if "Among Us" or "Fall Guys" weren't surprises, but they very much were. Sure they're popular, but bigger studios would probably try to compete from a fidelity standpoint rather than a gameplay standpoint, if they did in fact choose to do so.

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Then there are the big services being stood up. For reference, I'm in Alabama (the southern state of the US that everyone likes to make fun of). I have the fastest residential internet service in the county and it's fine for stuff like Netflix, but stuff like web based gaming is a bit of a strain. This is a neat correlation, not a political statement, but I imagine this is the case for the majority of red states. There are of course spots where it's not a concern, like around Austin, TX or Atlanta, GA, but both TX and GA have vast stretches where service-based gaming is a huge no-go. Hell, my parents live about an hour away and have 1500ms average ping. As service based gaming gets bigger, service oriented games will start becoming more of a thing. I'm not talking about stuff like games as a service; I'm talking about AAA games being made specifically for these services, which will lock out populations over vast geographical areas. I can't speak on other countries, but I've heard some horror stories from some people I play with from South America. I imagine that there'll be a reactionary movement, but I don't have a clue what that'd look like, but it certainly won't look like what we have now.

Now, these aren't things that keep me up at night. Most of the games I like to play now are around 5 to 20 years old and my wife and I are planning on having a kid soon, so the future isn't going to affect me much. I still find the curiosity really thought provoking, though.

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What do y'all think?


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