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Game Developers Missing Their Target? 184

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the varying-levels-of-addiction dept.
wh0pper writes "Digital Trends is reporting that a recent survey finds that there aren't just 2 gamer markets, but instead a whopping 6. What does this mean? It means that game developers and publishers are ignoring a large portion of the gaming market by focusing on the traditional two segments: casual gamers and hardcore gamers. The 4 other game markets they identified are Social Gamers, Leisure Gamers, Dormant Gamers, Incidental Gamers. If you are wondering what those categories mean, the article gives descriptions of what each segment is. A surprising result from the survey is the importance of social gaming; video games are often considered a solitary activity, but Parks Associates' findings indicate a significant portion of the market views gaming as a social activity."
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Game Developers Missing Their Target?

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  • Splitting hairs (Score:2, Insightful)

    by stupidfoo (836212)
    WTF difference is their between a "Casual Gamer" and a "Leisure Gamer"?
    • by stupidfoo (836212)
      Ughh... my grammar sucks.

      Anyways, about 4 or 5 of these "new" categories fall under the "casual" banner.
      • Re:Splitting hairs (Score:5, Insightful)

        by complexmath (449417) * on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @06:11PM (#16011720)
        WTF difference is their between a "Casual Gamer" and a "Leisure Gamer"?

        I assume you meant "Leisure gamer" and "Dormant gamer." It's difficult to be sure, but my guess is that it has to do with the number of hours per month each spends playing games. Leisure gamers seem to spend a lot more time gaming than Dormant gamers, mostly because they have more free time. This distinction is arguably a bit silly, but it may apply to game design with respect to the length of an average gaming session. For example, a Leisure gamer might have the time for a raid in WoW while a Dormant gamer would not, even though both are interested in the same type of game.

        I do think the addition of a few more categories is a step forward however. For example, a lot of gamers would be considered power gamers in terms of how they approach gaming, but casual gamers in terms of available time (represented by "Leisure gamer" and "Dormant gamer" in the list). Blizzard seems to have been catering to power gamers with little end game content for casual gamers, beleiving that casual gamers will rarely make it that far. But this obviously ignores a rather large subset of players in the Dormant and Leisure categories. Social gamers are another category for which MMORPGs tend to have a lot of appeal, but they typically approach content with a more "casual" play style. Often, these players experience very little content for the time they spend online because they're more interested in roleplay or simply chatting.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by JKConsult (598845)
          I think you're pretty on with the distinction there. I probably fall into a combination of the categories (as I'm pretty sure many do): If I'm at a place where MarioKart is being played amongst many people, I will without a doubt sit down and whip ass, I don't play games a lot due to a lack of time (though I do own an XBox with ~10 games), and when I do, I rarely devote more than an hour to it.

          Like someone upthread, I was raised on Sierra games (Christmas in the (mid?) late 80s, I got a Tandy and King
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      WTF difference is their between a "Casual Gamer" and a "Leisure Gamer"?

      Not sure, but I started out as a Leisure Suit Gamer. I still get misty-eyed when I see Lefty's.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      There is no difference, looks like the editor mistakenly used 'leisure' instead of 'occasional'. In any case, the analysis is somewhat misleading. How do you market specifically to social gamers? By definition they're mostly looking for interaction with other players, not the game environment per se. They'll go play what everyone else plays. Dormant gamers will likely want to play the same things as powergamers, they'll just have less time to do so. In any case, the design and marketing budget will con
    • by (H)elix1 (231155) <slashdot.helix@nOSPaM.gmail.com> on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @06:04PM (#16011674) Homepage Journal
      WTF difference is their between a "Casual Gamer" and a "Leisure Gamer"?

      Lots of polyester in the closet?
  • Usually drunk with a bunch of 25-30 year guys playing whatever the latest good multiplayer console game is (or good singleplayer game that works well in 'turns' - Burnout Revenge, for example).

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @05:51PM (#16011586)
    I tend to see this more and more nowadays. Yes, there's networked games like MMORPGs and FPS'ers but I think it goes beyond that. We're talking gaming as a spectator sport where a group of friends gather 'round some guy playing GTA solo.

    Incidentally, I see a similar trend in web-surfing. Some guy surfing through interesting/funny/lame sites while a group spectate him or her.

    I don't understand it completely. When I game, it's me against the computer...or someone on the other side of the network. No audience. Even in LAN parties, people have a chance to PLAY together, not just to watch someone else play.

    When I surf slashdot, there isn't a crowd behind me going "oooh man, you're really gonna say that?"

    What's going on here? Is it an after-effect of the prevalence of TV?
    • by amuro98 (461673) on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @06:01PM (#16011657)
      I know a few people (mainly women, oddly) who don't like playing games, but will sit and watch others play. I think this is partially due to the stories in the game, or just wanting to cheer their S.O. on.

      I also know others who were in long distance relationships and would schedule to watch something on TV while on the phone (or IM) as a sort of virtual date. If it worked for TV, why not web-surfing, or even gaming? You could go "shopping" with your IM-buddy, for instance, or meet up in WoW or something.

      And back in the days when I MUD'ed, I knew a lot of players who were just there for the social aspect. They weren't there to do quests or kill monsters, and would just hang out in the pubs to chat with other characters as they passed through.

      I doubt that's what the article was refering to as a "social gamer" though.
      • by Aero (98829)

        I know a few people (mainly women, oddly) who don't like playing games, but will sit and watch others play. I think this is partially due to the stories in the game, or just wanting to cheer their S.O. on.

        My girlfriend is a gamer of sorts, but the only game we play together (as in we're both controlling aspects of the game) is Puzzle Pirates, and the occasional turn-based strategy. When I'm on the PS2, she'll be my "wingmate" -- pointing out things that I may have missed, suggesting ways to deal with ene

    • I tend to see this more and more nowadays. Yes, there's networked games like MMORPGs and FPS'ers but I think it goes beyond that. We're talking gaming as a spectator sport where a group of friends gather 'round some guy playing GTA solo.

      This isn't new, I mean since arcades have been around people have gathered around the guy pulling off crazy shit, and back in the early 90's me and my friends used to sit around for a couple hours every once in a while playing a one-player CRPG.

      One reason is that some gam
    • by Angron (127881)
      Incidentally, I see a similar trend in web-surfing. Some guy surfing through interesting/funny/lame sites while a group spectate him or her.

      Because it's so much more interesting web-surfing on your own! If people want to see the same lame/funny sites, then doing it in a group seems perfectly logical.

      I've also known people who prefer watching others play games, probably because they prefer passive entertainment to active. For some games it even makes sense, when it's the kind of game where you just want to
      • by tverbeek (457094)

        I've also known people who prefer watching others play games...

        Such as the entire viewing audience of ESPN, 99% of whom haven't touched a ball of any kind since they were in school. Personally, I don't see the appeal (spectator sports bore me to tears), but evidently there are a lot of people who will happily settle for vicarious play rather than participate in an actual activity or game. It shouldn't be too surprising if that holds true for virtual activities as well.

    • Ooooh man! I can't believe you said that!

      Had to be said. ;)

      That said, I am a "hard core" gamer AND a social gamer. There are lots of games that play well as gropu games -- like playing "board" games or other traditional games. :)
    • Back in my childhood we had to call friends on a phone (no email, no cell phone) then they would have to walk miles in the snow just to play a few games. Often, we would go without food to keep playing.

      We didnt start out on video games, we just had exciting board or card games when attention spans had to last more than 2.5 seconds.

      To find how to pass a level or cheat, you would have to talk to other kids to find codes. Our cheat codes did not require some add on device(that came later): up up down down left
    • by grappler (14976)
      A friend of mine commented on this. He declared that the computer is the new 'hearth', or gathering place, for conversations and trips down memory lane. Friends crowd around its warm glow, looking at photos, looking up obscure topics that come up in conversation, and watching youtube videos. Or, in this case, games.
  • Money (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @05:52PM (#16011587)
    Dormant gamers make be 26% of the population, but they probably don't make up anywhere near 26% of the money spent on games, which is what really counts.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by amuro98 (461673)
      I don't think money is the only important aspect.

      For instance, Yahoo and other sites offer free games (online & otherwise) which are often sponsored by ads. While no money is being spent by the gamer in this case, you can be sure that the longer he plays on such sites, the more money he's generating for the website in question.

      Realistically, I think you would have to consider a graph where "money spent" makes up one axis, and "time spent" is the other. This means you could have a heavy spender, who do
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Ruff_ilb (769396)
        What you're thinking of (the time v money idea) can be evolved to provide a total image of profit for the parent company in question, especially for MMOs.

        Consider the ideal MMO player for Blizzard: You're probably thinking of the hardcore dungeon crawler eager to get their hands on the latest loot and run the latest instances. In all reality, this is the absolute WORST player for blizzard. They're forced to constantly release new content for this player, listen to them whine, and fix bugs that don't affect
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Tuebit (999000)
      Probably quite true that they don't spend 26% of the money on games. But that's EXACTLY the point. As a group, they've probably got the same (potentially more) disposable income than, say, the power gamer group. Perhaps it's a stereotype, but I suspect the power gamer group is somewhat underemployed. The point of the 'Dormant' segment is that they don't spend on games. It raises the question (a question of interest to game developers) ... what does it take to get this group (and their money) back into th
    • Re:Money (Score:4, Insightful)

      by johnstein (602156) on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @08:59PM (#16012590) Journal
      Dormant gamers can be viewed as recovering alcoholics. They don't spend money on booze anymore, but the urge is still there (from what I've heard anyways). For dormant gamers, like me, who have tasted the addiction of video games, but for some reason or another have gotten out of the habit, the money is often there, but there hasn't been a good reason to get us back into gaming.

      The Wii has very effectively captured my attention, and I really think there are a lot of people out there like me, young professionals with some disposable income and a renewed interest in gaming.

      So you are true. We don't contribute nearly as much money, percentagewise, NOW. But the market is there ready to be tapped... Just give us a quality and original product instead of a lot of the same old stuff.
  • ...We'll have World of WarCraft Liesure Edition, World of WarCraft Hardcore Gold Farmer Edition, and World of WarCraft "Dormant Gamer" Edition.What in the sweet hell is "Dormant Gamer?" Is that like coming out of the closet?
  • by cmonkey_1973 (844398) on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @05:53PM (#16011599)
    First of all, the article truncated to save your precious time:
    • Power gamers represent 11 percent of the gamer market but account for 30 cents of every dollar spent on retail and online games.
    • Social gamers enjoy gaming as a way to interact with friends.
    • Leisure gamers spend 58 hours per month playing games but mainly on casual titles. Nevertheless they prefer challenging titles and show high interest in new gaming services.
    • Dormant gamers love gaming but spend little time because of family, work, or school. They like to play with friends and family and prefer complex and challenging games.
    • Incidental gamers lack motivation and play games mainly out of boredom. However, they spend more than 20 hours a month playing online games.
    • Occasional gamers play puzzle, word, and board games almost exclusively.
    I was going to start hacking this to pieces, but it's so obvious I just can't be bothered any more.


    Bring us another transparent attempt for an outsider to seem authorative about the games industry, this one's broken.

    • by antic (29198)
      I'm definitely a dormant gamer. I would really like to have the time on top of work, partner and socialising to play more of the PC games I used to (the demos of BF2 and UT2006) and Xbox. Right now, my gaming is restricted to the occasional Halo2 or FIFA night with friends, but that's it.

      Sometimes I actually feel like I'm letting game developers down by not making the time to try out their offerings. That said, I've never really bought many games, so I doubt they're all that bothered.
    • Yes, those definitions do suck. Some innovative guy has gone "Maybe we're missing an opportunity here by assuming gamers fall into two categories" - fair enough - and then some firm has done a load of statistical dog-work to corroborate his theory.

      Only it's just that - a theory, as embryonic and flawed as any initial bright idea that has yet to be properly researched. No doubt if he'd come up with 20 categories, the statistics could fit those just as well. This is hardly proof, is it?

      Example? I'm definite

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Aladrin (926209)
      They forgot 1 type, though... The aging, frustrated gamer. At 29 years, I'm finding I like the beginning of the game... Casual, leisurely part where you mostly just have fun and get to know how things work. Once I get to the 'hard for the sake of hard' parts, I lose interest.

      Even FINDING a game worth playign is getting hard. I borrowed a friend's x360 (friends don't let friend play xbox... -sigh-) and he had Ninety Nine Nights. I -love- Dynasty/Samurai warriors. It's one of the few games I play more
  • Used to play ... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by anagama (611277) <obamaisaneocon@nothingchanged.org> on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @06:01PM (#16011650) Homepage
    I used to play and buy a lot of games. I'm from the Sierra Games generation though and maybe I just got older, but I find it hard to really get into games anymore. Once a year I'll pull out my Windows ME CD and install Civilization Call to Power -- play it for a week then go back to living. When I was in my teens and 20s, I played Deathtrack or Wing Commander till my joysticks wore out - every Leisure Suit Larry - tons of others I can't even remember. Now however, if I play a shooter on my PS2 for 30 minutes, my wrist and forearm aches for two days. I've tried adventure puzzle games but mostly, they are only modertately good -- something to do if there is nothing else to do and it barely costs anything. It's hard to find really compelling games that a fogey like me can play .... well, I'm only 37 but I can't take the repetitive game pad pounding anymore. And at $30-50 a pop, it's hard to justify the risk of buying something you can't return.

    Civilization is cool for me because it takes some thinking, is quite entertaining, but doesn't cause issues with hand overuse. It's a hard formula to match. Recently I tried Pirates of Carribean which seemed cool at first, but somehow just didn't capture my attention and hold it. Anyway, I imagine coming up with a game for people like me would be really hard to do successfully ... and then we'd just buy that one game and play it for many years as I've done with Civ-CTP which makes it hard for game companys to justify the development expense.
    • Ebay it (Score:3, Interesting)

      by rsilvergun (571051)
      There's no reason to buy games new if you're a casual player. I've got 60+ ps2 games off ebay. Some have sucked, some have been really good. But at less then $10 dollars a head (many less than $6), I can afford to take some risks.
    • by rackhamh (217889) on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @06:19PM (#16011766)
      I played Deathtrack or Wing Commander till my joysticks wore out - every Leisure Suit Larry

      Yeah, I played Leisure Suit Larry until my joystick wore out, too.
    • by Ruie (30480)

      Civilization is cool for me because it takes some thinking, is quite entertaining, but doesn't cause issues with hand overuse. It's a hard formula to match.

      Civilization is probably the only game with both graphics and moderately sophisticated AI and having random maps that actually matter.

      In most other graphical games either AI is non-existent, or trained on a small set of maps - often both.

      Why there is no fantasy-themed game with sophistication of Civ is beyond me..

      • by sqlrob (173498)
        What about Master of Magic?
        • by Dun Malg (230075)
          What about Master of Magic?
          If only they'd make an updated version. To this day it is still part of my Unholy Triumverate of Ancient DOS Games:

          Master of Magic, Master of Orion II, and X-Com: UFO
        • by Ruie (30480)
          What about Master of Magic?

          It was nice, but I did not find the AI challenging enough. Some silly moves were too easy to spot and exploit over and over again.

          In Civ, playing on a deity level is always chancy, requires attention, and I often cannot win if I am not on an island.

    • I found myself in the same spot. There is however a solution that has worked nicely for me. Gamefly is a netflix-esque service for games. I think a 1-at-a-time plan is like $15 month. Beats the heck out of constantly buying new games that will likely suck, or paying blockbuster $9 to rent one of their 15 games. My wife and I are rather particular about our games, and it's great to play them for a bit and be done with them.
  • by w33t (978574) * on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @06:07PM (#16011697) Homepage
    ...there aren't just 2 gamer markets, but instead a whopping 6.

    What is this, game-string theory?
  • by d'fim (132296) on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @06:07PM (#16011698)
    "Social Gamers, Leisure Gamers, Dormant Gamers, Incidental Gamers"

    In other words, people who don't spend money on games.

    So TFA is about how the publishers "just" need to figure out how to create games which are good enough to sell to non-buyers.

    If only the publishers had thought of this themselves . . .
  • by ADRA (37398) on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @06:10PM (#16011707)
    Unlike anything else I saw, I bought a game cube after years and years of being a console hater. Why? Because I've a social gamer and nothing caters to my current gameing interests more than having a few friends coming over to play Mario party or Super Smash Bros, etc.

    When the survey says that these groups aren't being catered to, they're not exactly being truthful. There are games produced for social gamers and the other groups. The problem is they're recognized less when propped up against multi-million dollar time killers like Grand Theft Auto. Plus, just because there are gamers of six categories, it doesn't mean there's money to be made. Anyone who isn't in the 'hard-core' demographics are typically not heavy spenders in gaming. Maybe, the supply is already meeting demand. Is the article flamebait, or just oversimplifying the supply/demand balance?
    • by Hast (24833)
      I'd say the PS2 has more games geared towards social "non-gaming". Such as Guitar Hero, Singstar, Buzz and similar games are typically liked by gamers and "non-gamers" alike.

      GC games OTOH are often more like normal games. Only with multiple players in mind.
  • that the Wii will dominate this Christmas season.

    Casual Gamers, Hardcore Gamers, Social Gamers, Leisure Gamers, Dormant Gamers and Incidental Gamers.

    The Wii, with it's groundbreaking controllers, is going to *own* at least 2 of those markets. I consider myself a dormant gamer: Mashing buttons isn't fun for me anymore, I grew up with a Colecovision and never got past the SNES. But I'm excited for the Wii, and my three-year old will be getting one for Christmas. No, not me, it's for the kids, honey. Real

    • Wow! For being out of the console game for so long, your sure pick up the role of "your system sux!" trolling fanboi pretty well!

      Sorry, knee jerk reaction for when I see "I haven't played games in 20000 years since I was frozen by the glacier - back when I was young it was Hoop n' Stick or Ball-in-a-Cup - But I plan on buying a Wii --- therefore the Wii will be the #1 selling system on Earth, as I, ancient unfrozen caveman gamer and slashdot reader am the average consumer so I have a say in this. Also I
      • by Abcd1234 (188840)
        I'm not sure why people equate "nintendo" + "new input device"="casual gamers".

        Probably based on a) their success with the DS in attracting new "casual gamers", and b) their stated goal of appealing to same. Whether it'll work, I don't know, but we'll see.

        A casual game is a SIMPLE game that people KNOW - input doesn't really factor into it

        What?!? A casual game is simple in part *because* of the input scheme. The whole purpose of the Wiimote is to provide a more intuitive interface so people can just pick
    • The Wii, with it's groundbreaking controllers, is going to *own* at least 2 of those markets.

      But wait, there's more! If we broke it down by gender, ethnicity, nationality, eye color, and left- and right-handedness, the Wii would have cornered a whopping SIX BILLION TEN QUINTILLION FIVE HUNDRED THOUSAND AND FIFTY TWO POINT FIVE markets! Score.
  • You can't get any off target than... Duke Nukem Forever! (Shouted in a Duck Dodgers voice, which was a great N64 game.)
  • As long as we get the same games over and over it does not matter in how many niches we split the market. I can be the most hardcore ice hockey gamer, but when I bought the 2005 edition of an ice hockey game, I won't buy the same game again in 2006. When I'm a hardcore shooter fan, I still won't buy two games that run on the same engine and with the same physics. At best, I try to find mappacks for the game I already have.
  • I don't understand how anyone could think in terms something so limited as "two markets" or "six markets." There is an infinite variety of potential customers. This story implies that it is conventional wisdom that there are just two game "markets." I've never heard that before.

    Who are these people, and how do they get jobs commenting on such things, when their whole approach to analysis is flawed from the start? What is the benefit to such analysis? Thinking in terms of two markets or six markets can only

    • by pilkul (667659)
      That's all true, but when you do surveys and market analyses you need to divide people into simple categories for statistical purposes. With your vague approach there's no way to make estimates about how many sales you can expect for a given type of game.
      • by dangitman (862676)
        That's all true, but when you do surveys and market analyses you need to divide people into simple categories for statistical purposes.

        Why?

        With your vague approach there's no way to make estimates about how many sales you can expect for a given type of game.

        How so? If you are doing a survey, ask customers "would you buy this game?" If they say yes, tick a box. Use this to make estimates on how many copies you will sell.

        It's a lot less vague than the approach demonstrated here, which involves breaking pe

    • Who are these people, and how do they get jobs commenting on such things, when their whole approach to analysis is flawed from the start? What is the benefit to such analysis?

      Because it makes communication easier to general audiences. Qualitative terms such as "casual gamer," are applied based on quantitative surveys. The actual marketting data and analysis is based on numbers, but most audiences don't want to hear specifics like "65% of gamers who play 0-5 hours, 45% of gamers who play 5-10 hours, 15%

  • I had a nicely drawn ASCII diagram drawn for this until I remembered the lameness of the /. lameness filter. I want my 37 minutes back, CowboyNeal!

    Anyway, those aren't gamer markets in any sense of the word market. They are gamer stereotypes or styles. Gamer markets are already well established: Sports, RTS, RPG, MMORPG, FPS, etc etc.

    One cannot wisely design a game completely around a style, such as "people who only play games incidentally are really going to like this game". Why spend countless hours
  • Game On (Score:4, Funny)

    by shoma-san (739914) on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @06:33PM (#16011855)
    There are only 10 types of gamers in the world: Those who understand pwning, and those who don't
    • There are only 10 types of gamers in the world: Those who understand pwning, and those who don't
      With the risk of ruining the analogy: There are 1337 types of gamers in the world: those who pwn and those who are pwnt.
  • Given that the "article" is pretty much a summary designed to convince people to pay for their full research, it's embarassing. Learn to use your graphing software. And perhaps more importantly: don't connect discrete data points with lines. What am I supposed to make of the line between "Social Gamer" and "Dormant Gamer"? That there are hybrids who constitute about 18% of the market? That there are not hybrid Power/Dormant gamers?
  • I'd count the number way higher than that. I'm surprised there still aren't any games more targeted towards particular cultural groups; so far we have tons for Chinese, Japanese, European, and American cultures, and a few with Russian elements and the one Godfather game (Italian...ish), but none for anyone else, and only ONE based out of the poverty faced by so many black families in the US. Where are the games with disctinctly Chicano roots? Or Hindi? Arabic? Central or South American? I'm particularly sur
    • by Cederic (9623)

      At risk of starting a flame war, doesn't the GTA franchise recognise different American social groups?

      I know those Chicos keep bloody shooting at me!

  • Almost everyone plays games to a certain extent. Not everyone plays a game that can make significant money. The market isn't ignoring them, they just don't make money.

    People like Blizzard are focused on the hardcore and casual gamers because they pay for new mega graphic video games at $50 a pop. That's a higher margin business.

    Segments they call the "occasional gamer" and "social gamer" are fulfilled by places like pogo.com, yahoo games, and other places. I also feel the occasional games is mislabelled
  • I'm a recovered gamer. Having spent hundreds of hours on Doubleback, Kings Quest, Game Boy, Doom, Quake, Carmageddon, and UT since I was 5, I haven't spent more than 20 hours on video games in the last 4 years.

    What kind of game do they make to lure me back?
  • by kinglink (195330) on Wednesday August 30, 2006 @07:46PM (#16012235)
    Either 2 or 3 million or what ever the population of earth is now. Any time you have groups you'll always have room for more. that's why for a while we had libertarian Democrats and Conservative democrats and such.

    The simple fact is there really is two. Casual gamers and "serious" gamers. The casual gamer is a gamer who spends 10 bucks on a game some one who doesn't actually game as a hobby, but more as a "oh that's fun" idea. Then there's the "serious gamer" They are the ones who will buy video game systems, and upgrade computers for games.

    Sure there's people who are both or neither but honestly all the subdivisions are dealt with in other areas.

    In reality there's 4 type of gamer also. The Explorer, the Socializer, the Competitor, and the achiever. There pretty obvious (explore the whole map, Chat while playing, Beat others, beat goals). But the fact is when you build a game you try to target them all. The base fact though is these 4 have nothing to do with the casual or serious. It's just another way to categorize people.

    The 6 idea works but in the end people will realize there's only two main catagories and these are just subdivisions of them.
    • by cgenman (325138)
      There are far more / less than 2 categories, unless your categories are "likely to like this game" and "unlikely to like this game." There are people with lots of time. People with little time. People with a mature view of that particular genre. People who are just picking up that genre for the first time. People who would be offended by sexuality in games. People who would be attracted by it. People who want to race virtual cars. People who want to shoot virtual guns. People who crave new and orig
  • The Seventh Segment. That almost sounds like a good name for a game, doesn't it? Perhaps I'm thinking of The Seventh Guest. But I digress... This elusive seventh segment of the gaming market is people like me: Non-gamers. And believe it or not, it is the largest segment of this market. Please allow me to explain: People who have nothing better to do with their time than being a gamer are seriously a bunch of lusers. I can think of a zillion better things to do than waste my time screwing with the joystick o
    • by Cederic (9623)

      1 - non-gamers are no longer the largest segment of the market
      2 - social gamers ARE having a social life
      3 - how is getting drunk in a bar more fulfilling than engaging in interactive challenging entertainment?

  • It means that game developers and publishers are ignoring a large portion of the gaming market by focusing on the traditional two segments: casual gamers and hardcore gamers.

    Oh, and also there's female gamers, but there's apparently no money to be made there.

  • by khallow (566160)
    I suppose this is an improvement over what *kind* of game you'd like to play. After all, everyone likes the exact same thing, they just don't have the same time requirements for it. And let's face it, Grand Theft Auto, Mines, SimCity, or Barbie Fashion Show, it's all the same game, just with slightly different time requirements and socialization.
  • The social gaming aspect of Star Wars Galaxies was great. They had four master-able professions that actually specialized in it before they threw it all away. I still don't understand their reasonings of getting rid of the entertainer aspect of the game. What a waste of code that drew a large crowd which I think was the glue that held it all together.
  • Oddly my girlfriend falls into an interesting, but ignored market. She'll play (often intensely) and enjoy games, but she rarely seeks out or purchases them on her own. Sure she's bought a few (Dungeon Siege, Warcraft III, Diablo II, X-Men Legends, etc.) but mainly only after after I got her interested or showed her a demo or she played my copy or something. Many times she's be heavily interested in a game, but often they're games that I bought rather than that she bought or influenced the purchase of in an
  • Since it came out The Sims was probably the most unexpected game to become a huge success. Who would have thought that, a game for girls? Most new games seem adapted for boys. My wallet and my daughters vote go for more really good girl games.
  • Well, I'm a semi-dormant gamer. I make them for a living, but because of that and family pressure don't really have time to play them nearly as much as I used to.

    I've spent a lot more time in PC FPS's than most other genres, mostly because they're easy to get into and out of, you can save anywhere, and the kids find them much more interesting than, say, an RTS or text-heavy RPG.

    Lego Star Wars has been a fabulous game for this segment I think - good for the entire family, great co-op mode, not terribly de

  • Those 4 "new" categories are just subsets of "casual".
    Just like how "hardcore" includes "RPG gamer", "retro sidescroller high scoring gamer", etc.

    Also, they state an erroneous opinion regarding social gaming as consesus, and then say that the survey surprinsingly contradicted that "fact".
    Since I remember growing up going to my friends to play many generations of console and computer games, I never once believed that "fact" of theirs. There's no reason to keep it alive the way they do since they keep seeing
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Game developers are hitting their target pretty much every time; a game that the publisher will pay for.

    Game publishers are the ones who staying on the same old safe genres.
  • by rabbot (740825)
    I guess I'm a dormant gamer with hardcore gamer spending habits...I still buy all the games like I did when I had more time than I knew what to do with, but now half of them sit unfinished.
  • All the other variants of gamers they come up with are stuff I would still classify with the casual gamer. This leaves the hardcore gamer, the casual gamer, and the people who don't game. The ignored market is the people who don't game....and why would you target that market?

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