I’ve had a chance to talk to a variety of developers lately from different corners of the world, and on each cast, we got on the subject of the mobile industry. As we’ve talked about in previous posts, we’re seeing more and more posts and videos from people declaring that mobile is the future for video games.
Speaking with them, it was interesting to hear their thoughts on the matter and confirmed to me one thing: Mobile Game Development in its current form will never be the future of the Video Game Industry for several reasons.
A recent post on Gamasutra has certainly gotten a lot of attention; attempting to show the positive angle of the Free to Play market and design when it comes to mobile games . The post brought out a lot of interesting comments from both sides of the field and is one of those very sticky topics. I’ve had discussions with supporters and critics and it’s one of those topics that is really going to affect the scope of the market for the remainder of the decade.
It seems like only yesterday that Zynga was dominating the casual games market. The absolute success of Farmville transformed Facebook into a casual game Mecca and it felt like every day we were hearing of a developer making a social/casual game.
Today the company is hemorrhaging money, massive layoffs and the new king in town (no pun intended) is King with Candy Crush Saga. But even with companies like King being the new casual game darling, something tells me the cycle is going to repeat again and it has to do with an unsustainable market.
Back in November of last year, Game-Wisdom had its first guest post from veteran game designer and city-builder genre expert: Chris Beatrice. Before and after that post we talked about design via email and there was one topic I found interesting: How he saw shades of the city builder genre in social games like Farmville.
At first I disagreed with him, but as I thought about it and saw the development of other social games, I could see a pattern of translating complex design into social games.