Saturday, December 5, 2009

I Am Gamer pt III (The Casual Gamer)

So I don't know if you've read my previous two posts in my I Am Gamer synopsis, but here's a quick rundown in cause you were too lazy to click the links.  This series is about the different degrees between gamers.  In my last post of I Am Gamer, I looked at the wide world of hardcore gamers. This time around I'm talking about the casual gamer.
The casual gamer is pretty much in my opinion the general marketed public that most developers try to reach to spend millions of dollars for mostly crap games.  Sure there are some gems out there like Little Big Planet, New Super Mario Bros. Wii, and Wii Sports Resort, but mostly it's crap.  These gamers aren't nearly as intense in gaming as hardcore gamers and usually tend to stay towards popular franchises such as Madden or Street Fighter when the next big game of that franchise comes out.  Hey I don't blame them, they're the ones that account for practically just as much sales for games as hardcore gamers, it's just that what they show for in games are different.  While the hardcore gamer gets a game cause it's shit-hot or it's a collectible (I still have my original FFVII with case for the PSone as well as the Greatest Hits version and a bootleg copy of it for the PC), they buy games either for the cheap or rent them from Blockbuster or Gamefly.  Just cause someone has a crapload of games to show how much of a gamer they are, doesn't mean that the other guy had spent just as much, if not more on games in their time as well.  We just can't rely on sales to own anymore.  Also, just having a plethora of $60 titles won't keep the business afloat, we need those casual gamers to buy, rent, and also use and abuse the DLC and original titles that can be downloaded to their consoles for a few bucks at a time to keep up the flow of money.  And we as gamers don't want another 1983 again, don't we!?!
But back to the disection of a casual gamer.  Just like last time, there's different degrees of what a casual gamer is and they can be a different mixture of at least the following ::
  • The Glancers :: This kind of gamer that know of a popular title, might have even played a videogame or two, but just enough in the loop to know what other gamers are talking about.  They could hang with those that can post in forums about in-depth gameplay, but once they're asked for their opinion on something about a game, they're just about as lame as a turd in the middle of a manure field.
  • The Wii fanatic :: These are the people that are only into the fad of gaming.  And since Nintendo is indeed the godfather of modern console gaming, everyone knows that this little white box is the shit.  First to come out with motion controllers that are completely functional versus others that I've mentioned in a previous blog, and the novelty of owning the Wii with it being bundled with WiiSports making the game the best selling videogame title, it's not much of a hard sell.  People love the Wii.  Hell, I love my Wii and I'm not afraid to admit it.
  • Old People :: It's pretty strange to see that more and more older adults playing videogams now than before.  Definately the 40+ clique is wanting to break into games, but less than those that are more serious.  Also with old people playing more actively with such sport games for the Wii and various puzzle games for the DS and PSP they're finding a youthfulness in them that has seem to been dormant since the dawn of the first Pong cabinet.  I just find it weird that my 60-something year old father in law is actively playing his DS more than me.  PRETTY FRICKIN' WEIRD I TELLS YA...
  • Nostalgics :: Those are the ones that can't get rid of their consoles of yore.  They are the collectors and the supreme nerd of old school gaming.  They refuse to shop the Virtual Console for titles that they can just get with a little more effort in a cartridge that they have to blow the shit out of to make it work on their NES.
  • The in-the-knows :: Those guys are the ones that read up on everything, might even be able to hang with someone talking about the game, but when it comes to playing, they either epically suck or never touched a controller in their freakin' lives.  They might be labeled as posers and even evolve to some people that claim to be gamers but are not truly gamers as their fans suspect.
I personally like to call myself the middle ground between casual and hardcore gamer.  I rent a lot of the titles I play.  I'm also an old school gamer and try to play the old console titles themselves as much as I can until a suitable remake (not a rehash of the same damn concept of a great game) comes out.  Which is why I practically fell head over heals for Marvel vs. Capcom 2 on XBOX live arcade and the Playstation Network and MegaMan 9 for the Wii Virtual Console (ok, maybe that's a rehash, but it's the exception).  I play other games on occasion only in between breaks of an epic adventure.  This is also in between work, blogging, family time, and song writing.  So, yeah, it's a pretty full plate, but I make time for gaming and that's what sets me into the degree of gamer that I am.
BootLeG sampler.. signing out...

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