Will The Multiplayer Obsession Continue In The Next Generation?
Multiplayer only seems to get more popular with every passing year, and it seems clear that its popularity won't be waning any time soon.
But as time goes on, I see more and more gamers rebelling against this fresh revolution. Many of them grew up with the hobby as I did, with the only "multiplayer" occurring when a friend sat next to you. And for the most part, it was a solitary hobby; something we did by ourselves and very much for ourselves.
At the same time, I have not been one of the vocal group that has complained about shorter games this generation. Most people my age don't necessarily have the time to play and complete these long epic adventures any longer and for many of us, a 10-hour adventure is plenty long enough. We don't require the extra longevity of multiplayer, either. And on top of which, if you really look at the nature of the industry, there are still a lot of single-player lovers out there.
Sure, Call of Duty is the biggest name in the game world and it's primarily because of the multiplayer boom. But look at the other huge names: The Elder Scrolls, Assassin's Creed, Uncharted, Grand Theft Auto, etc. Most of them have multiplayer options but hardly anyone is buying those games specifically for that reason. And look at what's coming up for PS3 exclusives: The Last Of Us, Beyond: Two Souls, and God of War: Ascension. Not a one of those will rely on multiplayer for sales and maybe only one (Ascension) will even have multiplayer.
Just this past week, the excellent Dishonored showed up; another top-notch campaign-oriented title. And that leads me to my next point- Many of these games I'm mentioning not only sell extremely well, they're also some of the most critically acclaimed titles ever. Hence, both critics and gamers love them and I don't see that very large group diminishing any time soon. It's true that the industry is dominated now by casual gamers (and it never has been before), but that doesn't mean the core gamers, those who require their single-player goodness, have disappeared. We're still here, too.
Therefore, I'm actually not too worried about multiplayer eclipsing everything else in the next generation. Are you?
10/18/2012 9:55:24 PM Ben Dutka