American McGee: There Soon ‘Won’t Be Much Need’ For Physical Game Stores

American McGee, creator of the boring really boring American McGee’s Alice series (see my review of Madness Returns) has been based in Shanghai for most of the last decade. When he isn’t running Spicy Horse, he’s out and about soaking in what he insists is the ‘here already’ future, namely the way Chinese consumer habits differ from the west. In a revealing interview with Industry Gamers, he suggests that brick and mortar game shops will soon go the way of cassette tape and Americans with high paying jobs:

In the (not so?) distant future there wouldn’t be much need for a bricks-and-mortar retailer. Why waste resources on a physical location and unreliable employees when the entire experience can be made sharper, cleaner and more entertaining in the virtual representation? China provides a working model of the store-less retail model — millions of people purchase real-world items online ( each day – making Western electronic stores like Best Buy nothing more than places to fondle physical goods you’re going to buy online anyway (Best Buy went out of business in China in less than 2 years, by the way).

He’s probably right, up to a point. Physical music stores have mostly turned into anachronisms, and thanks to e-readers like Amazon’s Kindle, book shops are probably soon to follow. The only hitch I can see is that the music shops that do still make money – like California’s Amoeba Music chain – do so in large part because customers can also sell and purchase used records, an experience that so far hasn’t really been duplicated online. And it’s worth noting that GameStop’s entire business hinges on used game sales. I can’t speak for Chinese gamers, but I am fairly confident that American gamers aren’t likely to decide that paying less for used games is lame.

The full interview is worth a read, even if it doesn’t change the fact that American McGee makes crummy games.

Via Game Politics.

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7 Comments on American McGee: There Soon ‘Won’t Be Much Need’ For Physical Game Stores


On September 14, 2011 at 12:05 pm

American McGee makes great games imo.They are not for everyone,but i don’t think that makes them crummy.
What’s with the gamefront hate lately?

Ross Lincoln

On September 14, 2011 at 12:08 pm

I criticize because I care. And because Madness Returns was super boring.


On September 14, 2011 at 12:21 pm

I didn’t find it boring at all,which if nothing else proves that “Madness Returns was super boring.” is nothing more than your opinion and should be stated as such by a professional like yourself.
I also find the lamestop thing a little childish,but thats my opinion of course.

Ross Lincoln

On September 14, 2011 at 12:28 pm

Click the link above to this:

I said everything I have to say there.


On September 14, 2011 at 1:31 pm

Madness Returns is super boring. My opinion as well. But hey if you enjoyed it then great. I think Catherine is the most asinine disaster of a game but it got a lot of great reviews. There is a game for everyone’s taste. Even if you have really boring taste. (i know cheap shot but whatever)

I can see a day in the future where its all dlc. When min hard drives are 6 terabytes and dirt cheap. Its very convenient having all your gaming library available or even better on the cloud so they can be access from anywhere but that’s probably 10 years from now.


On September 14, 2011 at 3:37 pm

his games are great just because you didnt get bad day la or alice scared you


On September 16, 2011 at 8:46 pm

You know, when I write I usually don’t find it necessary to insert short irrelevant jabs at a man I writing an article about. Sure you might have criticized a work he was responsible for previously, but that has no correlation to the “now,” so doing it really has no point other than acting snide for s and giggles. It’s called professionalism; try using it.

Also everytime I hear the words “super boring” you make me think of my friend’s five year old kid sister.