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September brings the games back…but should it ever stop?
Summer is at an end, marked by the return to school, college and the noise the first two bring to your neighborhood every fall. It’s also the point where we can start getting excited about video games again, because the good ones are getting ready for their release date, starting with the new Madden in late August.
Game publishers famously save all of their best IPs for the Holiday season, as the enormous spending facilitates a big market for their developers’ hard work, and it’s time to start looking at Summer for a new release season. Here’s the Top Five Reasons to Release Games in the Summer!
5.) Prebuilt Market
Of all the seasons, Summer provides the most free time for gamers. Anyone who attends school or college tends to have off for its entirety. If these folks 12-20 something have a summer job, statistics say it’s only part-time, and for all the nights with nothing to do the next day, a company would be smart to give us something new than to let us bother with a backlog or even play something we already have again.
4.) Less competition
We wouldn’t have this article up unless there was some serious consideration given by publishers to the Summer season of games. Imagine Mass Effect, Assassin’s Creed or Uncharted came out in June. Would you really pass it up for a Game of the Year edition of a game and DLC you already have, or God forbid, ANOTHER Dynasty Warriors game?
We didn’t think so.
3.) Testing Ground
Let’s say you’re nervous about trying out a new season to sell your Bestselling series. Understandable, companies like predictable numbers, not risk, as the ratio of sequels to new IPs show us. Why not turn it into the season of new IPs? A big budget, exciting new idea would have no equal for competition in Summer, until it catches on, leading to…
2.) Economic Growth of Gaming
Development costs for games have gone through the roof since the advent of high-definition graphics, yet independent developers have managed to release games like Braid, Minecraft, State of Decay, Fez, Limbo and countless others, that have made an actual impact on gaming with lower budgets and smaller teams. If some of these teams were to band together and continue to produce new concepts and actual innovation, they could be the next big house. If they released those games in the summer, the lack of so-called “AAA” titles could translate to better funding for these developers, adding to the industry and hopefully changing the quality we get with our games.
1.) Anticipation Hurts!
Far Cry 4. Little Big Planet 3. Dragon Age Inquisition. Borderlands the Pre-Sequel. These are but a few of the releases we’ve spent since early June drooling over in anticipation. And is there any relief in the Summer? Unless you have the aforementioned backlog or games you want to play over, the answer is a resounding, pain-inducing no. Yeah, that kind of wait will make gamers desperate to buy any game out there, but wouldn’t game companies prefer the games we buy to be theirs?
It would be a move appreciated by the gamers. Not only would game publishers like EA (constantly in the running for Consumerist’s Worst Company in America) benefit from a better public image, we are the ones that keep this industry going. The customer should always be the one feeling loved.
Do you think a Summer release schedule would benefit the Video Gaming world, or is a Holiday season world the right one? Drop a comment below to join the conversation!