And now, with Thanksgiving
winding to its inevitable close, and the events of the longish weekend stretching out before us, it's worth taking a step back and looking at all the things out there that make us thankful. Of course, the gaming community is no exception, and by extension, neither am I. For the second time in what I hope to be a long tradition, I'm going to run down the things I'm thankful for in gaming.
The Growth of Open World Gaming
One development that didn't necessarily start this year, but gained ground with alarming rapidity was the growth of open world gaming. We'd had open world games for some time, but most of them were Bethesda titles or involved the word "Grand" in some way. But this year saw things step up a bit. Things like "State of Decay," "Far Cry 3," "Saints Row 4," "Dead Island: Riptide
," and other upcoming titles suggested a clear path to come. Indeed, the very earliest stages of the newest generation of consoles shows that open world game play is likely to carry on with the arrival of "Dead Rising 3." Reports even suggest a new "Star Wars" game is in the making using the open world mechanic, and there may be some very exciting times afoot indeed.
The Next Generation
We're in the very, very earliest days of the next generation of gaming--sufficiently early that it can still credibly be measured in days as opposed to weeks--and already things are looking impressive. There have been console failures on both end, but both companies have stepped up to fix things up. Microsoft has perhaps done more than Sony here, but still, it's been a great day for both sides of the spectrum. A good start often portends a good future, and the end result is likely to be one to look forward to. And, of course, plenty of reason to be thankful.
The Indie Gaming
Oh man...it's downright staggering just how much of the gaming market is independent these days. Again, I point out "State of Decay" here, but there's plenty beyond that. "How To Survive" made a huge impact on the field. Games like "QuizOn" found a place in the mobile gaming market, and these are just a handful of examples. There's plenty more to discuss here, but all we need are just a few examples, and the certain knowledge that there are more such examples out there. The independent gaming market is on the rise, and that's likely to give us some terrific opportunities for great new stories to be told, styles to be experienced, and fun to be had.
As for me personally, I have an extensive slate of reasons to be thankful. I have everything listed previously, of course--I'm no less thankful for the growth of the indie gaming market or the open world concept than anyone else is--but I have a bit more than that. I have this fine blog space from which to work and present my own thoughts on the gaming market. I have you, the readers; I still remember the splash that that article on Kabam made with a wistful smile and a small sigh. And I have the profound hope that this all will carry on. Perhaps, God willing, next year I will be able to look back and be thankful for certain events in the 2014 gaming market. I look forward to looking back on the biggest events of 2013 on New Year's Eve, and the best things to look forward to on New Year's Day. Stick around, folks...hopefully, we're all just getting started together.