Posted on September 11, 2007,

GameStop to Work Casual Games into Holiday Sales

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Suddenly, it seems, the video game industry is starting to realize that there is money to be made in creating video games which fanb0yz won’t enjoy, but everyone else will.

GameStop announced today that they are going to be creating an entire section of their stores this season devoted to children’s and family friendly titles. And this just might be a good thing.

“This is for the gift-giver who is not coming into our stores on a regular basis,” Bob McKenzie, GameStop’s Senior Vice President for Merchandising, said in a New York Times article today. “This section is anything from Mario Kart to Zoo Tycoon to Nintendogs. The Cars game has been a big seller, Lego Star Wars, Hannah Montana and so on.”

Is it just me, or has the Wii brought about a larger change in getting more people to play video games? Maybe it’s a number of factors, but the industry is starting to pay close attention to the habits of casual gamers.

“There is a real breadth of properties now appealing to a much broader audience than we’ve seen before,” Daniel A. DeMatteo, Chief Operating Officer of Gamestop, said in the article. “Honestly, we are having to retool the way we think of things in our stores in terms of merchandising, layout and also customer service because it is no longer only the hardcore gamer walking in who knows exactly what he wants.”

We’ve also seen other evidence of an industry move toward casual gaming today, with Chris covering Take-Two forming its own casual gaming company. I’m sure we’ll see some other interesting changes as the holiday season approaches.

via New York Times

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3 Comments on GameStop to Work Casual Games into Holiday Sales

Joelteon7

On September 11, 2007 at 5:35 pm

Considering there are vastly more “non-hardcore gamers” (I don’t know what the term hardcore means anymore, its changed so much. Would someone be willing to explain it to me please?) then “hardcore gamers”, from a business point of view, it’d just make a lot more sense to encourage development for more point-blank-fun over acomplishment fun (a la completing Sonic 1 in under X amount of time).

I just hope developers don’t go into creating a load of mini-games or such like that mean those of us who like to enjoy games with more than 1 hour sit-down value (as in, those games that aren’t the kind of time wasters you play with family).

I can see the effects on the Wii now, to be honest. Likewise many others. Plenty of games…just, they’re all party/mini-games. Everytime I hear a new one in development for the console, it’s another party pack. Fortunately, there are more games on the horizon that should offer a bit more depth, but I’m beginning to think developers and publishers as a whole are beginning to turn away from more depthy games to quick-solutions.

LaChandra

On September 11, 2007 at 8:17 pm

I can only speak in terms of this country(US), but I think more and more people don’t have enough time for the lengthy games. When I was a lot younger and less responsibility I would stay up and play for hours at a time. Now if I try to do that my whole day is offset. Even now staying up to 12 AM when I have to get up at a quarter to six is not good. I would love to play Halo, Unreal Tournament, or Enemy Territory but I just don’t have the time. Not to mention the young gamer in training who shouldn’t be playing these games. I can’t really tell her go away or not now. If she want’s to play and I have the time then we play something. I think more of us working parents need or can only get the quick stimulation unless you’re one of those parents who lets their 4 yr old play Halo. I personally refuse to let my daughter play the games that are not age or material appropriate.

Seems I kinda got of topic but I really like this idea. There really isn’t much out there for my daughter to play. She’s into game like Kingdom Hearts and Nintendogs and stuff like that are not her thing so that limits what I will let her play. This will make it easier to find exactly what she can play.

William

On September 11, 2007 at 9:44 pm

LaChandra, I agree with the point that people don’t have enough time for lengthy games. This is why I really play a strange mix of games. What I play on any given day is usually based on the amount of free time I have.

This is why I download a lot of titles from XBLA and VC. When I don’t have time to get involved in hard games, I go the casual route for a good 30 minutes or hour of fun.