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2011 Games Industry to Top $74B

GamesIndustry.biz (registration required) has details on a Gartner forecast on the games industry in 2011. Word is $74 billion will be spent on gaming this year, up from $67 billion last year, and a third of that sum will be for software. They project this will rise to $112 billion by 2015, and much of the growth will be in mobile sector: "As the popularity of smartphones and tablets continues to expand, gaming will remain a key component in the use of these devices," said principal research analyst Tuong Nguyen. "Mobile games are the most downloaded application category across most application stores. For this reason, mobile gaming will continue to thrive as more consumers expand their use of new and innovative portable connected devices."

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35. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 7, 2011, 12:01 Zadig
 
If a game doesn't sell enough to be profitable then the developers made mistakes. The wrong budget, market saturation, wrong target audience, etc, but bad marketing still isn't the consumers fault. The major WoWclones were marketed relentlessly and were still disasters. People didn't want to play them, but the developers were too aroused by the thought of $100 million a month in subscriptions to care.

Profit obviously doesn't mean good or bad - No One Lives Forever is highly regarded and probably my favorite FPS, but it wasn't very successful financially. Call of Duty is awful, but it certainly is lucrative. I don't think NOLF would've become a huge franchise if marketed differently either. It was just a niche game that they spent a lot on. Lucky for me, unlucky for Monolith.
 
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34. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 7, 2011, 00:15 Charlie_Six
 
According to Game Developer magazine's annual salary surveys, most video game employees are making $60-100k a year. Profits or no, things seem to be working out pretty well for them.  
Adventures of a video game mercenary
http://virtualmerc.blogspot.com
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33. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 19:42 Dev
 
Zadig wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 17:39:
Losses aren't caused by consumers. It's the result of producers making things that consumers don't want. For computer games, think WoWclones. I read that Bioware has allegedly spent $300 million on theirs. If it fails like all the others have, then it will be entirely their own fault.
Not always, sometimes its a failure of marketing.
For instance, Psychonauts was a great fun game, and scored high on metacritic, but wasn't marketed well so it was actually a financial failure upon release.

Or with CoD games, marketing often convinces people to buy sequels that have less features than previous games.

So your view of the market is a bit simplistic However, there are cases where game companies put out crap that just doesn't have a big enough place in the market.

WoWclones, its everyone looking at the 10+ million subscribers of WoW and saying hey, if we build it we will magically pull in millions of people and get gazillions of bucks. Whereas in reality, nothing is close to dethroning them (wouldn't surprise me if what finally dethrones WoW is blizzards next MMORPG). The companies that HAVE succeeded in the MMORPG marketplace have done so because they can and have been designed to survive on hundreds of thousands of subscribers, not millions.
 
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32. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 19:42 JAGUART
 

Hollywood Accounting

[url=]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hollywood_accounting[/url]
 
"I like to play female characters in MMORPGs to trick men into homosexual chat." - space captain, June 18th, 2009.
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31. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 17:39 Zadig
 
Losses aren't caused by consumers. It's the result of producers making things that consumers don't want. For computer games, think WoWclones. I read that Bioware has allegedly spent $300 million on theirs. If it fails like all the others have, then it will be entirely their own fault.  
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30. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 16:22 Creston
 
nin wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 16:11:
I've bought several games on the recommendations of Blues readers this way.

Oh yeah. Word of mouth from here, good or bad, has influenced my buying decisions on Steam. And it's allowed me to play some great games I might otherwise have missed.

What? That's impossible! According to the "I don't have anything useful to say so let me just whine about the same fucking thing for the 40 millionth fucking time" brigade, we don't like ANY games around here.

Creston
 
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29. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 16:11 nin
 
I've bought several games on the recommendations of Blues readers this way.

Oh yeah. Word of mouth from here, good or bad, has influenced my buying decisions on Steam. And it's allowed me to play some great games I might otherwise have missed.
 
http://www.nin.com/pub/tension/
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28. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 16:03 Slashman
 
Cutter wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 13:45:
And there's a reason why peopl like to try before they buy. It's the same reason they don't buy cars without a test drive, or clothes without trying them on, etc. Everyone here can't even keep count of the games they may have purchased but did not because of the lack of a demo. And whilst a demo may dissuade someone from buying said game, a lack of of one definitely will with any new game they have the least reservation about. All the advertising in the world won't change that.

To take that a step further, I've bought games because people who's opinions I trust have played the demos and recommended them to me. I've bought several games on the recommendations of Blues readers this way.
 
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27. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 15:52 Kajetan
 
Beamer wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 11:11:
There's a reason people feel hurt by piracy even when making money.
Then show us the reason. Show us the proof. Please.
 
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26. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 15:26 Alamar
 
Kawlisse wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 13:15:
Beamer wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 12:46:
This isn't an attempt to be greedy, it's simple economics. Pre-release demos would add months to development time.

Now with big budget games, don't tell me they cant create a shareware version its just because they don't want to, and this is the problem I have with them. Anyways were a little off subjet

Neat how they're saying the same thing...

-Alamar
 
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25. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 15:24 Alamar
 
kanniballl wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 13:08:
Only slightly off-topic

I'd love to see more 2D games: side scrollers and such, with some modern graphics/resolution.

I know there's the occasional one, but I have to think that there's still a casual gamer demand for these things.

Heck I was thinking about picking up the Nintendo DS "Green Lantern" game because the commercial made it look like an interesting 2D game.

Nice timing on this... I just (finally) picked up Trine (having never actually looked at it, even with all the hype)... And it's a great example of a 2D game with 'updated visuals'...

I want a Castlevania style game like this myself... And if I had some artists... oooooh that would be some good stuff...

-Alamar
 
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24. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 15:12 Creston
 
Parallax Abstraction wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 14:12:
I'd like to believe it's just funny accounting and those most of these publishers are actually doing fine but look at the stock prices for EA, THQ, Ubisoft and others in recent years. Down, down, down. Funny accounting means that they made money and just make it look like they didn't, which investors know. When stock prices and market valuations are dropping, that usually means they're actually not making any real money. The board of directors and the CEO get most of their wealth from the shares they own and in recent years, all those shares have been worth less.

It IS just funny accounting. If your business genuinely had, say, a billion dollars of revenue and you made NO profit, you wouldn't be able to keep existing, because a single bad month would crush your entire ability to make payments.

They make plenty of profit, but if they showed it as profit, they'd have to pay taxes on it. So they use some fancy (IRS-sanctioned) accounting tricks, and suddenly, TADA! The company lost 30 million dollars and owes nothing. And can even write that 30 million (fake) loss off next year, allowing them to dodge even MORE taxes.

Their stock prices are dropping because they're not doing AS WELL as the investors want them to do, and that's partially because the economy's just been bad. And despite several tardbillies proclaiming that the game industry is recession proof, it is anything but, as amply evidenced by games not yet two months old already dropping 25-50% in price.

The game and movie industry are nowhere near as bad as professional sports teams yet, but they're getting there.

Creston
 
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23. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 15:07 Creston
 
nin wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 11:58:
Also, $74B in revenue, and yet none of them make a profit.


That's because 73B of that was from lost Crysis sales. Cevat Yerli told me so.


I forgot about that!

Creston
 
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22. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 14:45 bhcompy
 
Parallax Abstraction wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 14:12:
Fion wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 12:36:
Creston wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 11:51:

Also, $74B in revenue, and yet none of them make a profit.

Creston

It's the same kind of wackjob accounting that let Newline claim they lost money on the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

I'd like to believe it's just funny accounting and those most of these publishers are actually doing fine but look at the stock prices for EA, THQ, Ubisoft and others in recent years. Down, down, down. Funny accounting means that they made money and just make it look like they didn't, which investors know. When stock prices and market valuations are dropping, that usually means they're actually not making any real money. The board of directors and the CEO get most of their wealth from the shares they own and in recent years, all those shares have been worth less.

This was true in the past, but in today's market, stock prices and market valuations that are dropping can be simply from not growing enough. Games are somewhat seasonal and have long dev cycles, and the market media/investors push quarterly earnings growth as the big ticket investing measurement. Coupled with that, investors are increasingly making short term investments. Gaming companies can lose money all year and make it up at Christmas, but investors don't like to see that. They like to see big growth every quarter, so they can make cash on the bump seen at earnings release and quarterly press conferences(look at what Netflix did this week for an indication of that).
 
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21. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 14:12 Parallax Abstraction
 
Fion wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 12:36:
Creston wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 11:51:

Also, $74B in revenue, and yet none of them make a profit.

Creston

It's the same kind of wackjob accounting that let Newline claim they lost money on the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

I'd like to believe it's just funny accounting and those most of these publishers are actually doing fine but look at the stock prices for EA, THQ, Ubisoft and others in recent years. Down, down, down. Funny accounting means that they made money and just make it look like they didn't, which investors know. When stock prices and market valuations are dropping, that usually means they're actually not making any real money. The board of directors and the CEO get most of their wealth from the shares they own and in recent years, all those shares have been worth less.
 
Parallax Abstraction
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20. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 13:45 Cutter
 
Beamer wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 12:46:
Shareware is still pretty much alive, you should search goggle a bit, you might learn a few things. But most game publishers don't use it now... No matter how "Simplistic" my 2 cents his, its right on spot.

You do realize games used to primarily be an engine that you plugged levels into, which was very easy to break apart, and that's no longer true, right? Not with complicated AAA levels.

You also realize that demos mostly disappeared because the time it takes to create them is no longer feasible pre-release, right?

This isn't an attempt to be greedy, it's simple economics. Pre-release demos would add months to development time.

And there's a reason why peopl like to try before they buy. It's the same reason they don't buy cars without a test drive, or clothes without trying them on, etc. Everyone here can't even keep count of the games they may have purchased but did not because of the lack of a demo. And whilst a demo may dissuade someone from buying said game, a lack of of one definitely will with any new game they have the least reservation about. All the advertising in the world won't change that.
 
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"The South will boogie again!" - Disco Stu
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19. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 13:17 Dev
 
Fion wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 12:36:
Creston wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 11:51:

Also, $74B in revenue, and yet none of them make a profit.

Creston

It's the same kind of wackjob accounting that let Newline claim they lost money on the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Yeah that was hilariously funny to me that Newline was claiming that so they didn't have to pay the actors, directors, employees, etc. I really wanted to see that to go to court, but of course they settled it. No jury would have accepted that.

kanniballl wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 13:08:
Only slightly off-topic

I'd love to see more 2D games: side scrollers and such, with some modern graphics/resolution.

I know there's the occasional one, but I have to think that there's still a casual gamer demand for these things.

Heck I was thinking about picking up the Nintendo DS "Green Lantern" game because the commercial made it look like an interesting 2D game.
You keep an eye on steam releases, especially the smaller indie type ones? There's often lots of 2D games there such as side scrollers. You are not the only one looking for them
 
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18. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 13:16 Verno
 
kanniballl wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 13:08:
Only slightly off-topic

I'd love to see more 2D games: side scrollers and such, with some modern graphics/resolution.

I know there's the occasional one, but I have to think that there's still a casual gamer demand for these things.

Heck I was thinking about picking up the Nintendo DS "Green Lantern" game because the commercial made it look like an interesting 2D game.

Terraria is a pretty great example of a solid 2D game with seemingly simple yet deep gameplay mechanics. I wish we had more games like it.
 
Avatar 51617
 
Playing: Divinity Original Sin, Infamous Second Son, Madden
Watching: Spartan, Possible Worlds, The Changeling
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17. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 13:15 Kawlisse
 
Beamer wrote on Jul 6, 2011, 12:46:
Shareware is still pretty much alive, you should search goggle a bit, you might learn a few things. But most game publishers don't use it now... No matter how "Simplistic" my 2 cents his, its right on spot.

You do realize games used to primarily be an engine that you plugged levels into, which was very easy to break apart, and that's no longer true, right? Not with complicated AAA levels.

You also realize that demos mostly disappeared because the time it takes to create them is no longer feasible pre-release, right?

This isn't an attempt to be greedy, it's simple economics. Pre-release demos would add months to development time.

Same crap, they make an engine and slap levels into the game. levels are stored in a pak file, or a different format depending on the engine. Why they don't make this anymore? because of pencil pushers, big corporate descisions, it aint more complicated doing a shareware at the same time as the game. A shareware is a portion of the full game. no need extra coding. Just need to build your game to allow an easy way to make the shareware portion of your game available.

Now with big budget games, don't tell me they cant create a shareware version its just because they don't want to, and this is the problem I have with them. Anyways were a little off subjet

My point his you want to make money, don't treat your customers like criminals. I for one don't want to shove 50$+ on a game without trying it first. like BF bad compagny2 I waited for it to be on a sale on steam paid only 7$ if they had provided me with a shareware version or a real DEMO I would of probably bought the game @50$
 
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16. Re: 2011 Games Industry to Top $74B Jul 6, 2011, 13:08 kanniballl
 
Only slightly off-topic

I'd love to see more 2D games: side scrollers and such, with some modern graphics/resolution.

I know there's the occasional one, but I have to think that there's still a casual gamer demand for these things.

Heck I was thinking about picking up the Nintendo DS "Green Lantern" game because the commercial made it look like an interesting 2D game.
 
"Space. It seems to go on and on forever. But then you get to the end and a gorilla starts throwing barrels at you."
-Fry, Futurama
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