Are we a dying breed of original gamers? This question is always brought to my mind more often when I walk into a game retailer packed full with youngsters eyeing video games tucked away in hand-smudged, glass cases.
One of my most unsettling confrontations with this new generation happened just recently. As I stood in line to place a preorder on Guitar Hero World Tour, I overheard a young man (age 13-16) behind me brag excitedly about his first playthrough of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed for the Xbox 360. His exaggerated comments and know-it-all explanations was all it took to push me into a brief debate with the young ladâ€¦
Jake: â€œHavenâ€™t you noticed the clunky, broken gameplay mechanics? Multiple reviews are just barely above average due to unresolved glitches, bugs, and poor level layout. My experience with the demo gave the impression of a poor beatâ€™em up, platformer with no direction. Doesnâ€™t the gameplay feel unfinished?
Young man: â€œWho cares about the gameplayâ€¦the graphics are awesome!â€
I simply sighed and walked out the door.
Is this whatâ€™s destroying not only Nintendoâ€™s core market, but the overall video game industryâ€™s â€œoriginal gamerâ€? We are always quick to blame the growing casual market for poor AAA title sales, yet the virus might simply be originating from our own kids.