Submitted by Game-Modo 661d ago | opinion piece

State Of The Video Game Industry: The Distribution Dilemmas

Distribution of goods is something that every business constantly evaluates based on cost and effectiveness. In today’s connected world, a lot of traditional distribution has gone to the digital format, and video games are no exception. However one thing that separates games from other products is it’s consumer base. Gamer’s are some of the most passionate, and sometimes irrational group of customers on this planet, and understandably so. Unlike other forms of products, especially media, games create an investment of time, emotion, and interactivity that no other medium can touch. So the Gamer feels more connected to their product on a personal level than most non-gamers can understand. (Culture, Industry, Tech)

ATi_Elite  +   661d ago
Digital is the way to go for me!
The PC has shown the world that Digital Distribution works and I love it!

All my games are safely on my Hard drive and all my games belong TO ME!!

i can make hard copies if I want and if Valve is overrun by Combine forces I can still play my games!!

If my HDD is stolen or blows up I can re-download them all for Free!

I don't feel the need to have a bunch of plastic boxes sitting on a shelf collecting dust!

Large download sizes don't bother me cause i would never have a IP provider who has bandwidth caps (that's just stupid) and I download while i'm sleep or away from my house!
rainslacker  +   661d ago
Digital is fine for those who like it. But it does have some drawbacks that many DD supporters either overlook or simply ignore. I'll address your personal points and tell you why some of us are uneasy with a DD only future.

"my games belong TO ME"
Actually, no, they don't. Read the EULA of any of those games and you will see that you own nothing. They can at any time take away the "privilege" you paid for to play the game. Wasn't it just a few months ago people were upset that Valve required you to sign a new EULA or risk losing your games? While I trust Valve overall, do you really believe that all companies would be so nice about it and probably not screw you over?

You have a point about being able to re-download them if something bad happens. Game theft from individuals is rather rare. Damage to the physical media is much more likely, but same difference I guess. So there I will agree with you.

BUT. What if they take away the game from the server. Several games have been taken down from both PSN and Live. iTunes removes songs from time to time. So if I still wanted to play that game again and it was no longer available online, at least I could still hunt down a physical copy if I so desired. Again, it's a negative that needs to be addressed that is being ignored.

Plastic boxes.
That's a personal preference. I personally like having those plastic boxes. Being a collector it gives me a tangible product to collect. It's more satisfying than sitting a flash drive or HDD up on a shelf. In the end this comes down to preference, and some people just prefer to have a physical product.

"Large downloads"
OK, well games run 8-40GB's now. Imagine what happens when texture sizes go up. Sound moves to a standard 7.1 included. Games code becomes bigger. While you may be fine with an 8GB download, are you going to be fine with a 200GB download(One of the possible sizes of a blu-ray disc). Storage I don't think is an issue...but if I can go to the store and pick up a game and play it in less than 30 minutes, that sounds a lot better than a large download, even with a fast connection.

"bandwidth caps"
It may be stupid to you, but maybe your not aware that a good portion of the world actual has no choice in the matter. Competition may help this in the long run. However that's going to be a long ways off. Even a decade for super fast, uncapped bandwidth is a pipe dream for many, and by many I mean a hell of a lot.

So, while there is nothing wrong with liking DD, and for people who like it, more power to them, it does come down to the negatives need to be addressed before DD becomes the only option. More than likely what we'll see is it continue being an option (likely gaining more market for it), but physical will remain just like it has for the easily accessible DD music/book market.
nikrel  +   661d ago
Wasn't there something with STEAM not too long ago where if you did not accept some new EULA or something you were locked from your games?

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