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Solo: A Single-Player Success Story (The Jimquisition)

Jim Sterling:

God of War recently made $131 million in digital revenue. Octopath Traveler is struggling to meet physical demand. These are just two in a long line of successful story-driven games. But please, game industry, tell me again how nobody wants 'em.

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DigitalRaptor47d ago

This is one of Jim's best.

A couple of my favorite truthbomb lines:
- "single player games were never dead, it's just a lot of publishers murdered them!".
- "they chose to starve the market of games [people] were hungry for".

To this day I can't believe Phil Spencer made that horrible, false and misleading claim that single-player games are not as impactful as they once were. Well no, we know that they absolutely are as impactful as they used to be, you just have to: (a) make them (b) make them good. So enough with the lies from these slimy corporate folks.

Build it, and they will come. https://media.giphy.com/med...

coolbeans47d ago

To this day I can believe DigitalRaptor acts appalled over whatever an Xbox Executive stated, regardless of context.

"The audience for those big story-driven games... I won’t say it isn’t as large, but they’re not as consistent," he said. "You’ll have things like Zelda or Horizon Zero Dawn that’ll come out, and they’ll do really well, but they don’t have the same impact that they used to have, because the big service-based games are capturing such a large amount of the audience. Sony’s first-party studios do a lot of these games, and they’re good at them, but outside of that, it’s difficult – they’re become more rare; it’s a difficult business decision for those teams, you’re fighting into more headwind."

To personify this quote as "horrible, false and misleading" is being melodramatic. Since we're discussing SP games: https://www.reddit.com/r/Ji...

Apocalypse Shadow47d ago (Edited 46d ago )

Cool, Phil said it to change the narrative to what works for them and make more profits. It's clear what he meant. Jim is right on this one. Companies are trying to change the industry for self gain. Business yes. Doesn't mean we have to buy into it.

What makes Sony money? Single player experiences. Since my early days of gaming, I lived on pitfall, Mario, sonic, mega man, castlevania, ninja gaiden, phantasy star, land stalker, metroid, etc in between contra, streets of rage,turtles multiplayer.

But companies like MS,EA,etc are trying to introduce the mobile model of reoccurring sales off of the same product. And connected digitally. And that's fine as long as it doesn't interfere with the style of games I like.

MS's investment in single player, or exclusives in general, is lacking with all that money they have. Their single player games failed and reviewed low because they didn't put in the work. What makes them money? Reoccurring transactions and xbl subscriptions. Just like they said bluray was not needed and digital was the future because they raked in that money from micro transactions and dlc sales because it didn't all fit on one disc. And tried to stop companies like epic and valve from giving free content. But you could put all that extra content on a bluray. Same with halo. Killed couch multiplayer for multiple copy sales and xbl subs. And their 2013 debacle of pushing for always online which would have sold subs and advertising through kinect.

He implied it's hard and a headwind. When it really is "trying to put in less work for more profits." Less expenses on production for "lazy artifically extended design."

When gamers still rather have the tasty burger on the left
https://i.imgur.com/Dzmg7Xk...

Thatguy-31046d ago

it's not like all service-based games are successful tho. Obviously in the long run service based games will make more money because of the engagement but it's not easy to reach that level of success with those games. A lot of good quality SP games will bring more profit than mediocre serviced based games. In the end, all this just boils down to laziness and greed.

-Foxtrot46d ago

Lets be honest what Phil said is a really well put together way of saying

"They aren't as impactful as they once were and service based games are hot shit capturing a large audience...so why the hell would we do single player when it won't bring in much money compared to big service based games"

showtimefolks46d ago

Cool

Than why did they buy 5 gaming studios? Bring behind by 45-50 million is enough of statement of which company is doing the right things

Games like sea of thieves with barely any content at launch sold because Xbox fanbase is hungry for games now just imagine if they get some seller fully finished games

coolbeans45d ago (Edited 45d ago )

So...it's pretty clear some of these responses aren't really made in good faith or are twisting my point. So I'll try to handle as many of these comments together.

@Apocalypse

-Erm...kinda? It's weird how you conjure up that the notion that he's "changing the narrative" when that quote is coming from a question fielded to him. The context for his response seems pretty appropriate. Companies trying to change the industry for self-gain doesn't really make sense either. Companies are following profit margins, potential markets, and risk on a regular basis before putting their money towards x product. What are you talking about? It's pretty clear an incredible portion of the market is buying into live-services.

Sure. Sony's got a good system going with monetizing SP games. Even if one underperforms, they'll have others to shore up the potential loss.

-"But companies like MS,EA,etc are trying to introduce the mobile model of reoccurring sales off of the same product."

Gee...it's almost like we should pretend Sony isn't doing that as well with Uncharted 4 and GT: Sport microtransactions. Pretty much every company is looking for outlets about what you're specified.

-The rest of your comment is just goes into a rant that's only tangentially connected to the crux of my first comment. Not saying I vehemently disagree with it (a mix of yes and no), only that it's going off the tracks.

@Thatguy-310

-"it's not like all service-based games are successful tho."

Oh absolutely. A lot of MP-focused games have bitten the dust recently as well. There's obviously going to be some level of risk involved with any game investment made. BUT the key thing is said service-based game has more avenues of recurring revenue that buttress the initial cost to said developer.

-"A lot of good quality SP games will bring more profit than mediocre serviced based games."

When looking at the grander scheme of things, I'm really not convinced that is the case. Destiny 2's underwhelming performance among fans still charted better than Wolfenstein II, Dishonored II + Death of the Outsider expansion, Prey (2017), and more. It's easy to highlight how well God of War is doing, but we can't pretend all high-quality SP games have performed well in respect to sales.

coolbeans45d ago (Edited 45d ago )

[PART 2]

@-Foxtrot

Let's be honest: you're more interested in spurning your own twisted interpretation than making a level-headed, cogent articulation. Funnily enough, his following statement actually touched on this:

"We’ve got to understand that if we enjoy those games, the business opportunity has to be there for them. I love story-based games. I just finished [LucasArts-inspired RPG] Thimbleweed Park – I thought it was a fantastic game. Inside was probably my game of last year. As an industry, I want to make sure both narrative-driven single-player games and service-based games have the opportunity to succeed. I think that’s critical for us."

@showtimefolks

So...your response relies on staying outside the bounds of my comment's intent. Obviously MS's ACTIONS within the past couple of months are something to acknowledge; however, I'm trying to highlight DigitalRaptor's deceptive interpretation of Phil Spencer's WORDS here. That's it. I don't really care what you think of SoT here or whatever other oh so grievous sin MS did in the past. The point remains as such: Phil Spencer's comment regarding SP games isn't "false, horrible, and misleading" when considering the full context. Let's try to focus on this point as much as possible.

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 45d ago
rainslacker46d ago

These are the kinds of pieces that made him so good in the first place. I don't always agree with him, although I do here, but he does seem to research and make his point in a very strong way.

sypher47d ago

I remember getting banned on n4g for once posting a YT commentary vid like this, with mods saying only links to actual sites are allowed on n4g... so.... has that now changed? Or is it more of a 'who you know' situation.

coolbeans47d ago

1.) I currently see NO bans and/or restrictions of any type on this account here, only some submission warnings over 1000 days back. Unless said ban you're talking about was rescinded back in the day--which is possible, your language desperately tries to martyrize your past experience on here. Sorry to get judgmental but that's just how I see it. Anyways...

2.) So, the method in which this specific video has been sourced is incorrect. Should've been through TheJimquisition site. YT sourcing is only allowed by official dev/pub channels (as I understand it); everything else must have site source.

sypher47d ago (Edited 47d ago )

lol had a good laugh at that.

Yes I got banned a while back for posting a YT vid directly, and I'm not trying to be a martyr nor am I involved in terrorist activities. I merely learnt through a harsh lesson of posting a vid once, that you simply don't post YT vids on here under threat of ban.

Jim Sterling is not a dev nor a publisher, so again not sure how it falls under YT sourcing and should fall under site sourcing i.e. someone writing about this particular Jim Sterling vid/topic and using it as a source. In the case of Sterling, surely his 'official' site would be the source rather than YT directly, but even then I'd consider that sketchy (if we want to be technical rule followers that is, or maybe that's not a thing anymore, who knows).

Once again it becomes a game of who you know. There's a history of partially enforcing rules where mods see fit around here sadly.

Martyrdom here I come.

coolbeans47d ago (Edited 47d ago )

So, you're still presenting this odd word choice in respect to how the site works. Was this ban on some old account you just forgot the passcode or something? Or was this a ban that later got revoked by the mod team? Because, as I said, your record is totally clean as far as bans or temporary restrictions go. You have a pair of old warnings though. And I wouldn't call that getting a 'threat of a ban' either. It's just a temporary restriction if it's kept up and you ignore the reports that'll eventually come. Even then, said restrictions just limit ONE particular thing you can do on the site. You're still free to comment if you have a 'Approve Submission' restriction being enforced.

-"Jim Sterling is not a dev nor a publisher, so again not sure how it falls under YT sourcing and should fall under site sourcing i.e. someone writing about this particular Jim Sterling vid/topic and using it as a source. In the case of Sterling, surely his 'official' site would be the source rather than YT directly,"

You would be correct and that's why this has been put back in pending until the submitter rectifies this error. Personal sites such a Sterling's are allowed b/c of his storied involvement with games journalism beforehand. This is also why a site like Tom Chick's Quarter to Three is allowed on here.

-"Once again it becomes a game of who you know. There's a history of partially enforcing rules where mods see fit around here sadly."

Well, I'm sorry you feel that way. But whenever these accusations of bias come up they're oftentimes disregarding the potential context or nuance in our decision-making. Or there's potential that we simply didn't see what x person did here or there.

sypher47d ago (Edited 47d ago )

When I got banned I could no longer login (just gave me a message about the account being banned) I then had to use the contact page to get in touch with someone. I let them know I had no prior warnings, and had no idea why it happened and they lifted it. Wasn't until I got back on that I went through and saw through the notification thing that it was due to the YT thing. So yeah it happened :/

As long as there is consistency I have no issues, that way everyone is on the same page and it doesn't become an issue of 'such and such a person' gets away with posting duplicate content/YT vids because of stature.

I'm sure eventually though, n4g will have to adapt and accept all video content, as the industry shifts more and more towards that space rather than the written word.

46d ago
coolbeans46d ago

-"When I got banned I could no longer login (just gave me a message about the account being banned) I then had to use the contact page to get in touch with someone."

Ah, I know what you're talking about now and do apologize for how I personified your initial comment. I just jump on that sort of stuff b/c I've had a few instances of people portraying...let's say 'overinflated persecution' on here. But I think you're still a bit off on something. See: that 'unable to login' ban you're talking about was a site glitch even I've encountered and had to get sorted behind the scenes as well. But regardless, I painted you in an unfair light w/out considering that site issue that plagued us.

-"As long as there is consistency I have no issues, that way everyone is on the same page and it doesn't become an issue of 'such and such a person' gets away with posting duplicate content/YT vids because of stature."

Absolutely. We try our best to filter said content to the best of our ability. He's made the corrections here so this one has been kept in check (of which you deserve some credit as well).

-"I'm sure eventually though, n4g will have to adapt and accept all video content, as the industry shifts more and more towards that space rather than the written word."

I wouldn't say all, but I do believe we'll begin something to see something of a YouTuber subscriber threshold or something for hosting more video content in the future. I would like to posit some ideas on this in the future.

sypher45d ago (Edited 45d ago )

No worries!

When that discussion regarding video content happens there definitely needs to be some kind of threshold involved like you mentioned.

Another thing that may be beneficial, is having official platform posts i.e. PlayStation blog - automatically feed into n4g. That way users on here aren't all trying to one up each other being first and the source is the primary rather than a 3rd party reposting the same content.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 45d ago
Madmoose47d ago (Edited 47d ago )

Shut the hell up Jim. Nobody has really said that at all. You're just taking the words that some Fanboys twisted (mostly to fit an agenda & fairly made up narrative) and running with it to get clicks and pats on the back from a bunch of them it seems.

meka261146d ago

Agreed, no one ever said single player games are dead, just that GaaS are more profitable, which they are.

Platformgamer47d ago

even if he has a strange grudge against sony for just being at the top, he at least recognize the beauty of god of war.
also, he's right about SP games, who says the opposite (EA, microsoft, activision, etc.) is an idiot

coolbeans47d ago

Damn. With these recent plagiarism accusations I worried how this'll work with my 'Tired of this Schmidt' series.

Had a similar topic in mind.

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