Wednesday, November 16, 2005

The Problem

Imagine two different brands of washingpowder. Both are priced the same, but one has flashy packaging, where as the other doesn't. The one with the flashy packaging doesn't get any stains out, but the one without the flashy packaging does.

In this instance anybody buying the washingpowder with the flashy packaging would soon realise how crap it was and try a different brand. Probably the one without the flashy packaging and then become a regular customer to that brand.

This model of "The proof of the pudding is in the eating" does not apply to gaming. If a game wants to sell well it has to have flashy packaging. Regardless of wither the game is actually any good or not the publisher still makes a sale. Customers don't associate crap merchants with poor products. So even if a gamer hated the last five games they bought from Electronic Arts, then they will still buy another.

This is the problem with the games industry and there are several ways of fixing this. One is to start producing games as episodic content. Two is to offer additional paid content for that game through a micro payment (XboxLive Marketplace will do this) and there is the third method that I am exploring in my final year project.

I would like to talk more about what I am doing, but I am afraid someone might try it first, make a mess of it and destroy any possibility of success that it might have. Still I can say that it is going well at this moment and even my nonegamming supervisor has gotten the vision.