Last week’s high profile launch of Halo: Reach, and the stories of gamers camping outside retailers' doors, tell me that game launches have become just like movie premieres and create just as much excitement as the launch of new Apple gadgets.
Did any of you catch a glimpse of the stats published by Bungie Software? Looks like gamers haven’t been disappointed with their new purchases. Over 1,300 man-years have been spent playing it already – hopefully it hasn’t created the same number of relationship break-downs! I wonder how many of them are unemployed...
Reading all of these stories has got me thinking about boxed games. Is the boxed game genre running out of steam? I came across an interesting bit of research published by NPD Group. It basically says that downloads – particularly for PCs – are catching up with boxed games: 43% of PC games were sold online in the first six months of this year.
Me thinks this trend is going to continue and the shift from boxed products to online games will accelerate. Which means that we will see a lot more of these high profile launches – and I hope this means that we'll also see lots more creativity from game developers! The students who started our new games course on Monday will build their careers in this environment. I am going to enjoy talking to them about this and their views on what it will mean for their work.
How do you think downloads will impact the work of the games artist? Drop me a line and let me know what you think.