Costs and Boxes

Raph Koster at it again. After reading most of the discussions and his awesome blog posts. Two things:

– Our capitalist society destroys the middle inexorably. Mid tier developers, middle class, same. It’s by design: capitalism focuses on maximizing profits which exacerbates both ends of the spectrum. The bottom and top rise while the middle deflates. It’s almost pure physics at this point. I don’t like it, I like the middle, the middle is balanced. We barely mention game developers but we are the ones suffering the most from that strong tension between small teams/budgets or huge teams/budgets. Both bring crunch and unemployment, stress and means to brute force as much as possible (loot boxes are some kind of brute force financing). Capitalism needs to chill. We need to chill.

– Generations, as always: a lot of gamers are over 35 and hate those loot boxes and pay for win systems. Younger generations? They love that stuff. They don’t mind subscribing, they care about showing off their new avatar’s outfits. It’s a generational gap. They have less than ever offline and want everything online, that makes sense. Millennials and internet natives are a much bigger, juicer crowd than gen X. As the industry focuses mainly on youth well, they mostly try to tell 35+ to fuck off. But not too much because they still bring a lot of money too. They can’t afford to lose that crowd either.

That’s where I think something will happen in the next five to ten years: population is aging, living for a much longer time. Most of the wealth is going to move to older brackets. Publishers will have to go and reach out for this money and they might have to rethink their business models and subscriptions to include 40 and 50+ people.

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