4 Things to Spoil Your Game in the Nearest Future
Contradiction between gamers' desire to have free of charge fun and developers' ongoing pursuit for more money is a catch-22 for game industry nowadays. When there is a balance on the both sides, it pushes all things forward. But when this delicate balance is ruined, somebody — either gamers or developers — gets pissed. Here is top 4 things which will probably ruin the balance and piss you off in the year to come!
If the theory of parallel universes is true then there must be a perfect reality where developers create games only out of inspiration and with absolutely no desire to earn any material reward from gamers. And the rivers there are overfilled with foamy beer and nobody needs money because trees sprout evergreen bucks instead of leaves... Sorry, it looks like I'm letting my imagination drive us into some kind of Homer Simpson's dream. But going back to the theory of parallel universes, even if this wondrous realm exists, there is no possible way for us to reach there. So let us steel our souls to deal with harsh reality. Enlisted below you may find a hit parade of the most annoying irritants to threaten your joyful gaming experience in the upcoming year.
1. Skippable in-game video ads
What do you think of Youtube video commercials you can skip only after a few seconds of watching? Yes, these god damn commercials which prevent you from instantly getting to your intended video. Annoying as hell, isn't it? Well, now keep calm and face the new Google's initiative to allow online games developers putting skippable Youtube-style ads to their games. The Internet giant's DoubleClick Ad Exchange platform already grants developers and advertisers an opportunity to ingrate so called TrueView video commercials into games. The question is when this option becomes essential for developers. Of course, it may not. But what if it does? You should already start practicing your skipping techniques then.
While free-to-play model is getting more and more popular among developers, gaming community is still quite controversial about it. Mostly it's so due to the fact that only a few developers teams managed to bring out really seamless, user-friendly and yet effective monetization scheme. The most evil form free-to-play can possibly embody is called "pay-to-win" and avoiding it becomes a new frontier for developers. One of the recent discoveries on this field is "play-to-pay" model. It suggests that you pay for the time you spend within a game. You can pay either by micro-transactions or with special virtual currency. In the least case there is actually a significant danger that you will have to grind like a beast just to earn more money to secure another few weeks of playing. Sounds pretty bad but what would it look like exactly? We will find out with the release of NCsoft's Wildstar.
3. Public persecutions
Games have already managed to attract a considerable attention from public persons looking for an easy way to increase their political weight. Virtual violence is the main point these hypocrites take aim to. Have you ever heard the name Greg Smith? This prosecutor is undoubtedly the most popular government official among Australian gamers. Well actually his popularity has quite a negative hue. For several years already he keeps attacking games. The upcoming GTA 5 is his new-found victim — Greg Smith almost took an oath of making the game banned by any means it takes. Game-hating officials can be found in Russia, United States, Great Britain and other countries. And they are going to get louder because as a result of its growth game industry becomes more valuable prey.
Popular science gave birth to a whole new genre of infotainment you may call "ridiculous research".Just take a look at the headlines like "British scientists prepare to cook first in-vitro hamburger" to get what I mean. Games provide rich soil for this kind of scientist to carry out their unverifiable speculative researches of human behavior and specifically aggression. And soon you find out that Anders Breivik and Sandy Hook actually came to what they had done because Call of Duty and World of Warcraft made them like this, killers and psychopaths. Idiocy, you may say. But this idiocy is capable of shaping public opinion against games. This way all the aforementioned politicians gain an additional argument in favor of their populist cause.
Recognizing a problem is the first step towards solution. Let our short list be a contribution to this first step. Who knows, perhaps the following steps will lead us to a world a bit closer to the one described at the beginning of this article. The world where games are made with pure inspiration and developers know how to monetize without getting their hands in gamers' pockets. Where gamers understand that there is nothing wrong about paying for the fun they enjoy. And maybe there is still some chance of seeing bucks sprouting trees in bloom...
-- Thank our columnist Pavel Elchenko, Public Relations Manager of NIKITA ONLINE