Thursday, July 26, 2012

Beyond Escapism in Game-Playing

The surprisingly downcast report from online game service Zynga, which showed an unexpected loss and declining user involvement, is not just another indication of the declining hold of video games on the public. It shows that games in general are losing some of their novelty value.

When the purpose of games is pure escapism, the content of a game scarcely matters. Essentially anything will do, so long as it is understandable, consistent, and engaging. If people are starting to demand more than this from games, it shows that game-players are progressing beyond mere escapism. This is progress in a sense, but it is not good news for traditional game-makers like Zynga or most of the video game industry.