Almost Lulz worthy when you consider how many people play WoW and such.
Let me put it this way. When the gaming industry went online a lot of producers realized that for a similar investment of money and time they could take your average Epic RPG with it's grind, cutscenes, character customization, etc... and put it online with multiplayer and then sell the $50 asking prices for the base software, plus membership fees (mitigated by the cost of running servers). Even a fly by night MMO with a decent amount of initial hype could make more money than a purely single-player game.
Thus, you saw most of the big single player game developers go over to MMOs. Joe Ybarra, Richard Garriot, and people like that are all involved with MMOs now and they were THE designers for single player games.
What's more with the time spent on MMOs, your typical gamer isn't going to have time to play many other games, which means they aren't going to buy them. I only play WoW fairly seriously and have time to shallowly play a lot of other games because I'm disabled. When I was working this was hardly the case.
Your MMO player is not likely to go back to single player games, rather when they get truely burned out on their MMO of choice they look for ANOTHER MMO.
Console gamers are admittedly a differant braket, and overlap a bit with MMOers because shallow shooters and such are something you can do in between raids. Heck, some hard core people I know keep Portable gaming systems, or even a full fledged console hooked up to another TV next to their PC for those occasional 45-minute+ raid preperation moments (which admittedly are less common now than they used to be).
It's not GPUs that "killed" PC game, it's MMOs that changed it. How many players does WoW have? Okay and then think about how many are on all of the second and third tier MMOs, and even playing those "Free" Korean MMOs (for which you can buy clothes-shop point cards now at Best Buy).
Will things ever go back? Perhaps. But right now the face of the industry changed. Not wanting to constantly upgrade computers to meet the new generation of games was one element, but do not underestimate what MMOs did which was a much, much more signifigant development to gaming in general I think.
The same thing could happen to consoles if someone actually finds a way to make a really good MMO truely function in that enviroment (many companies have talked about it, few have even tried it seems). Then you'll see most of the console gamers playing the MMOs instead of buying individual games, and then the console market will have a dillema.
This is so remarkably silly.
I... I don't even know where to begin picking at this.
Okay, so yes, WoW has a lot of subscribers. And we're talking a lot
, true enough. First of all though... okay, for starters you're confusing cause and effect here. The main reason that MMOs are actually able to enjoy such tremendous popularity on the PC is precisely because it circumvents Shamus's point - MMOS realise that the vast majority of PC gamers don't
have state of the art hardware. This is why there have been more copies of WoW sold than X360s - also why Crysis, for instance, sold so poorly in comparison.
WoW is succesful because it appeals precisely to those hundreds of millions of people that already own PCs even if they're not gamers.
The assumption that PC gamers aren't buying more games because they're all too busy playing WoW
is the silliest thing I've heard all month. I'm sorry, but it just doesn't work that way.
MMO players play MMOs. But - a. it doesn't prevent them from from playing single-player or competitive multiplayer games on the PC if they've got the hardware to
and b. You know, not all PC gamers play WoW >.>
I really don't have the numbers here, so I hope someone will back me up.
But this is essentially the same as arguing that the X360 is selling poorly because everyone's too damned busy playing the Wii
, which is ridiculous. The two have massively different audiences. Like the Wii, WoW gets such a large player-base because it's so damned good at ensnaring non-gamers and casual gamers. It's not a case of gamers who would, otherwise be interested in playing, say, Gears of War, or Oblivion or whatever, deciding that they don't need to look for a gaming fix past WoW - just as it's absurd to say people don't buy Halo more because they're content with waggling their Wiimotes in Wii Tennis.