Are cheap mobile games a risk to the industry?

Are cheap mobile games a risk to the industry?

According to Nintendo’s president, low priced mobile phone games are one of the biggest risks for the games industry as they are giving the impression that all games should be cheap. Last night I had a fantastic gaming session with my son, not on a Wii, PS3 or xbox but on my iPhone and it cost me 59 pence. The success of the Wii is something that Sony also encouraged with eye toy, casual gaming that is fun and accessible for all kinds of people not just hardcore gamers. It strikes me as a little naive to think that the app generation is the biggest threat to the games industry. Though, the cost of a ds game is huge and takes a child ages to save up their pocket money

The iPhone has opened the Market to small developers, provided a fantastic opportunity for people to break into games and because it is so easy to use, has opened up the world of videogames to a whole cross section of society. My children and I get just as much fun from an iPhone game as well as a ds for a fraction of the price. Epic has produced an amazing looking game for only a few pounds and created a version of their awesome engine specifically to embrace this exciting platform. The biggest threat to the games industry is the CEOs not listening to gamers - they should be encouraging development every where creating internships and fostering talent.

The makers of angry birds have opened an academy, not bad for a little throw away game.  Come on Nintendo Sony and Microsoft, get your act together! Speaking of internships one of our games students Chris Chorley is doing a six month internship at veemee. You also only have to look at the success of Portal to see that Valves approach to internships pays huge rewards.

We have a new Games Course starting in April and there are a few places left, so drop us a line if you're interested in attending.

1 Comments Simon Fenton

Posted by
Simon Fenton
Wed 9 Feb 2011: 10:29am

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  • Chris Chorley:

    I agree, however i don't think its the price as much that is the bigger worry according to Mr Yamauchi. Anyone interested in computer games will buy a game if its good regardless of the price. Games as big as Call of Duty or well known sports titles will always sell when executed well. I do fear for the DS and PSP though. The main risk for me is how easy it is to get something to market now. You haven't got to have loads of money behind you or be a well established business to do it. In-fact not too long ago a 14 year old boy from the states topped the free app charts with Bubble Ball. Like you mentioned i think its a fantastic opportunity for people to break into games. It gives some of the power and freedom back to the artists, i think its really exciting, but i would say that :)
    The industry can also use it to its advantage though, the second hand games market is still huge, and what a great way to recycle some classic games titles and re-sell them again on the iphone or ipad. For example i was pleased to see the original Worms game from Team17 appear on the ipad. It looks fantastic! I too would like to see some of the bigger companies take a bit more of a lead on this instead of being stuck in old ways. Im sure it wont be long before you see smaller teams within these larger companies making the most of all platforms.

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