Game Marketing Tips, Analysis, and News

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Multiplayer Is Not Multipayer

It looks like August sales figures for the videogame industry are once again going to be down... perhaps 7% or 8% over last year. The reason, according to Michael Pachter, is that there are too many multiplayer online games that have gotten too good at keeping players engaged. So it's eating into their gaming time, and why buy a new game if you're already playing games as much as your time allows?

Yet another reason for publishers to change their business models to a subscription pricing, as if they needed any more encouragement. But it will be a bumpy transition, as gamers don't like change very much. I think you'll have to introduce new games with the new business model; shifting existing games over to a subscription mode will be very hard.

The hidden problem here is that this will change the fundamental design of the games, the development process, and the marketing. Marketing will have to be much more integrated with product development. The traditional antagonism between the two castes will need to be overcome. Which will also be a struggle at many companies... they may have to start hiring marketing people who are gamers, not just P&G marketing experts. Oh, the horror.

The illo above isn't from Halo? Hmm, well, it should be...

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