Sunday, 21 April 2013

Games no longer excite me

Over the last few months a weird thing has happened to me. I no longer get excited about new games. Don't get me wrong I still love playing games and it is my overriding passion, however I no longer wait with bated breath for the big new releases. Take the new Bioshock for instance, I didn't pre-order it, and didn't really intend to pick it up when it came out. The only reason I caved was because literally everyone on twitter was talking about it.

And I enjoyed it very much, playing it pretty much constantly until I finished it. It was very good, but not that exciting. The game plays quite similarly to previous Bioshock games and the plot does some very clever (if perhaps nonsensical) things. But that is what I expected. I expected the game to be reliably excellent, and it was. Maybe I am becoming a jaded old man but reliably  excellent is not that excited any more. So why buy games brand new when I can wait and get good games cheap within months (sometimes weeks) of release. Perhaps this is why I rent a lot of games rather than buy them, because I can play a good but unexciting game, like Crysis 3 which I currently going through. And I reward those games that I rent and do excite me by buying them, like Yakuza and Binary Domain. 

I am sure that there are those that would argue that as the current console generation is on it's last legs, a lack of enthusiasm is to be expected. I think that is not the case, I think that people are lacking excitement because of the lack of new ideas. Recently new Gears of War and God of War games were released and both sold pretty poorly. I genuinely believe this was not because they are bad games, just  because they are very familiar ones. Hell I think had Bioshock Infinite had not had the big marketing push, people would have actually been put off by yet another Bioshock sequel, despite the fact that aside from the name, infinite has very little in common with 1 and 2. 

I think that is why the indie market is going from strength to strength, as people latch onto innovation. When the new consoles come out, I think that the same problem with continue. Big games, particularly sequels, will cost a fortune to make and will fail to ignite any massive passion in the game buying public. I think there will still be a market for big sequels, things like Skyrim and Bioshock show that, but I  think there will not be the margin for anything less than excellent (I really hope that COD starts to suffer). 

So will I buy a new console? Yeah probably a PS4, and I will keep renting games and only occasionally buying games that turn out to be exciting.

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