Game developer’s misconception of casual gamers

MWEB GameZone writes: "Casual gamers have a ton of untapped potential skill and competitive drive just waiting to be unleashed. Unfortunately, game developers do not see the potential in the casual player base and are therefore making their games easier in order to attract more players."

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HanCilliers1485d ago

Interesting read. Personally I don't like the division between casual and so called "hardcore" gamers. What distinguishes the two? Game difficulty? The games played?

Be that as it may, what I do agree with is that devs shouldn't make games easier just because they think it'll draw the social gamer to the AAA games. Changing a game like Quake Live just to make it easier is a bad call IMHO. It dilutes the experience.

Sillicur1485d ago

Thank you. Yeh it is very hard to 100% define what is casual and what is hardcore as well. There are different definitions from person to person and even between different communities.

Quake Live, I will miss you the way you were!

Ares84HU1485d ago (Edited 1485d ago )

I'm here to help you understand the differences between casual and hardcore gamers.

I'll just give you examples so it will be easy to understand.

Casual gamers: Someone who plays games rearly, mostly mobile games or facebook games but not limited to these. Their average game time is less than 5 hours a week. They are not up to date with the gaming world and don't even care that much.

Hardcore gamers: Someone who plays games like Battlefield, CoD, GTA5, WoW or the latest games that are released. Almost never plays mobile or facebook games. Play time is 20+ hours/ week. Usually playes on consoles or PC. Very up to date with the gaming world and cares a lot.

HanCilliers1485d ago

I know people who play social games and at times also the likes of a BF4. Where do they fall? Then I know hardcore gamers who care less about what's going on media wise and they don't always play 20+ hours, yet the frequent say competitive servers etc etc.

Ares84HU1485d ago

Don't take what I said by the letter. It was just something to give you an idea of how different the two are. That is why I used words such as not limited to. Yes, casuals play BF sometimes and yes hardcore gamers play mobile games sometimes. If you don't play around 20 hours a week than you are not considered a hardcore gamer in my eyes. Simple as that.

It's in the name guys, casuals play casually, sometimes, rarely, on occasion. Hardcore players play a lot, that is why they are hardcore.

Why is it so hard to understand the difference?

Just because you play 2-5 games of BF4 every week, it doesn't make you a hardcore gamer but a casual gamer.

Please don't take everything you read by the letter and use your brains to try and understand an example and you will be able to tell who is a casual and who is a hardcore gamer.

brish1485d ago

The definition of "hardcore" for both games, and gamers I see most is related to difficulty not the hours spent, and/or the type of game played.

user56695101484d ago

So now that I been working like a slave this summer and barely have time to play games I am now considered a casual gamer.

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DefenderOfDoom21485d ago (Edited 1485d ago )

to HanCilliers, as someone who has played over a 100 FPS campaigns , i agree with you ! The FPS campaigns from the 90's and the early 2000's the default difficulty was always challenging . FPS campaigns from the 7th gen , the default difficulty , seemed like the easy difficulty. To me that ruins the challenge . And yes i know i can move up the difficulty (which i did ) . But i believe video games, should be built around the default mode being challenging . And if is too hard for some players , then they could drop the difficulty. As far the phrase HARDCORE GAMERS go . I do not not like putting people in different groups . Their is lot of grey area , when it comes to different types gamers.

HanCilliers1482d ago

Yeah, the lines between casusal/hardcore have become blurry. The gaming landscape has changed a lot and is changing still. I like saying we are all just players :).

Spotie1485d ago

I somewhat agree with Ares.

To me, you can be a hardcore casual gamer, or a hardcore core gamer; the difference is between core and casual.

Simply put, casual gamers don't have as vested an interest in the industry as a core gamer. They can be hardcore and play Farmville 200 hours a week, but they care nothing about what happens in the industry. It would mean nothing to them if Nintendo went bankrupt or Sony pulled the plug on the PS4.

Core gamers care. They're the people who frequent this site. They may not play a whole lot of hours in a week, but they ARE interested in what goes on within the industry. They may prefer one genre over another, or just one, or everything. Regardless, the health of the industry means something to them.

These two crowds should be treated differently by gaming companies, because their weight and importance is intrinsically different. Because they don't care, casuals come and go; it's the core gamers who sustain gaming.

There's nothing wrong with acknowledging and catering to both. But gaming companies- especially those with long histories- should never focus on the casual to the detriment of the core.

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Choc_Salties1485d ago

I'm a big fan of "casual" games, but don't dumb down games that don't really need to be dumbed down. Soem of the mods that have come out for Skyrim, come to mind - they actually make the inventory and UI system more in line with a PC games capability, rather than the stock config which makes it ideal for console gamers.

Dammit, keep the games in context for the audience and also their usability capability based on platform!

Sillicur1485d ago

Ah great example of the Skyrim mods, thank you!

Roccetarius1485d ago (Edited 1485d ago )

I've yet to see the untapped potential, because generally speaking, casual players just follows the leader, then complains if the journey is too taxing.

A perfect example would be making them play DMC 3 or 4 compared to DmC, one game is not like the other games. It's unfortunate that the industry thrives on making games less challenging, but it's the reality because of the majority.

Please, don't chase the casual carrot, because they'll dump you faster than you can say carrot.

Sillicur1485d ago

Another great example is the casualization of WoW, yet I still believe a portion of the casual player base has great potential and do enjoy difficult games, where time restrain is the main cause for concern.

Roccetarius1485d ago (Edited 1485d ago )

I personally played WoW for 6 years from Vanilla, and i do weep for the changes that Blizzard has made. I was thinking about going back, so i could fill a void until other games currently.

Just a small amount of research told me, that i wouldn't enjoy the game anymore. The Enhancement Shaman was a favourite of mine, but now i'm not even sure the developer plays the class themselves.

It's such a sad state of things.

DesVader1485d ago

Its certainly a tough carrot to chase, for sure. If you get the casual game right, it spreads like wildfire, but for every one that gets that ripple effect, there are 10 000 that get none, it seems.

Genova841485d ago

The game itself doesn't make the player "hardcore" or "casual". Shit, I casually play starcraft 2 which has a massive hardcore base. However I'm hardcore when I play any fighting game.

Take New Super Mario Bros for example. A casual gamer may play through it and not get all the coins to unlock level 9, but a hardcore fan might.

Kevlar0091485d ago (Edited 1485d ago )

Several points I want to bring up to counter the author, and in general as well.

For one, Miyamoto said "advanced games", not "difficult games". The key distinction is advanced games are more likely to be difficult to master or have a higher skill floor, but a difficult game is not necessarily more advanced. Flappy bird may be a difficult game but it is not advanced, you have one action to perform and to advance you only need to master one main concept. In a game like Dues Ex HR, sure you can blast your way to victory, but to take time to go for stealthy, non-kill strats is more advanced and requires more patience and involvement with the player to execute. And not only that, but to invest in the lore on an intelligent level is more proactive than the casual mindset.

Second Miyamoto isn't necessarily saying casual gamers are intrinsically pathetic or stupid, but rather the attitude they have is pathetic, that if you don't shove color and sounds and simple pleasures into their face they won't buy into it.

I believe Miyamoto has defined "casual gamers" in the best sense as of now. His view is that casual gamers are drawn to these simple games and concepts over and over and are afraid of or just don't care about more advanced or deep games (they may care a little, but not really). Also I don't think of casual as someone who has only played games for a short awhile. You can play games for a long time but still be regarded as casual, in that you don't go deep into the finer mechanics and tactics of the game (or games in general).

If you compare the total library of games played and the depth you go into each game between casual and hardcore/general gamer I'm sure you will find a huge difference. Miyamoto is trying to get the point across that casual gamers don't care too much about the finer points of a game or the depth it may have, they care about getting their visual, audio, and fun fix without much investment.

Again he isn't saying casuals are cancer or a negative thing in the industry, just their view is limited and kind of sad from the viewpoint of a legendary game designer who has a track record of deep, engaging games. I don't believe his comments are meant to bash, only to illustrate what he sees.

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