There seems to be a recent outcry about the fact that gaming companies (such as Nintendo) have been reaching out to the so-called “Alpha Mom” when it comes to gaming. Especially with the Wii. Oh? And your point would be what?
I have to be honest when I say I am so over the “we are hard core gamers and they should focus on making games for us” attitude. Over. It. I have heard and read accounts of gamers who get seriously pissed off about the fact there are games created that are not “hardcore” but are being marketed to the maternal set. Cry me a river, boys. Your whining pisses me off!
Do I have a Wii? Yes. Do I have a DS? Yes. Do I have every game console (except PS3)? Yes. More importantly, do I play them? YES. Do I play MMORPGs? Yes. And I am *gasp* a Mom. Can you handle that truth?
But let’s get back to the real reason I am fired up. If I hear one more complaint or whine about companies that are looking to lure in/market to/reach out to the “alpha moms”, I just may have to open up a huge can of whoop ass on someone.
It is a simple concept. They show us the fun games. The games that will appeal to an entire family. They know (because they are smart and not caught up in whining about “hardcore” vs “casual” gaming) that if they can get Mom in on the gaming, they have won a huge battle. So what if you, Mr. Hardcore Serious Gamer Dude, is not a fan of games such as Wii Boogie. Easy solution. Don’t play it. I happen to have it, love it and play it with my entire family.
So why should game developers and companies look to demographics such as the alpha-mom set? (Besides the fact that we are the ones who make the majority of the household purchases?) Well, since I enjoy it, I share that fun with friends. They in turn buy the console and the game and the cycle continues.
Honey, that’s not ignoring the gamers that came before us. That is creating an entire new generation of gamers. Plus, if they sell these games to us “casual gamers” don’t you think that will equal profit, which leads to the ability to create more games which will get you, Mr. Hardcore Serious Gamer Dude, more of the types of games you want. And yes, I know that the first person shooter games are popular. You think I can’t whip someone on those, too? I may be able to kick up my heals with games like Wii Sports and Wii Boogie, but I can kick ass with the best of them on Halo.
What so many pissed off “gamers” seem to forget is that when they sell games to get the “Alpha Mom” and she gets her family involved (even if these are the “more casual” games), they are selling them to the generation that is probably going to kick your ass in your “hardcore game” within a few years. You have to learn to walk before you run. Soon, there will be an entire set of gamers that will be running…right over you in your game.
So let’s talk MMORPGs.
A while back on my gaming blog I had someone link to me and say that “I was ruining the integrity of true gaming by calling myself a gamer and playing World of Warcraft.”
(Yes, I laughed, too.)
I am very thankful to Blizzard for taking a chance on me and hooking me up with WoW. I was at a point that not only did I not get the appeal, but I was ready to get it out of the house. They got it. They realized that if you get the mom, you get the family. I really do enjoy WoW. I have fun playing. And, yes, I can probably whip the crap out of a lot of the whiners on the game because I don’t worry about whether or not I am a “real” gamer or not. I just play.
Guess what, Mr. Serious Gamer Dude? Remember when you were crying a river over the delayed release of Blizzard’s Burning Crusade? Remember that? I was alpha testing it. Then beta testing it. Now, I am raiding with the best of them on it. Why? Because gaming is not limited to a certain minuscule demographic. Women play games. Including the “hardcore” games that you seem to feel you have cornered the market on. Even Moms play them. Yes, really!
The Newsweek blog Level Up wrote a re-cap of E3 and mentioned this very issue of not meeting the needs of the core gamer.
Elephant in the room:
The unfulfilled needs of the core Nintendo gamer, who’s becoming as invisible as Snuffleupagus while the company pursues Alpha Moms and active seniors.
The “needs of the core Nintendo gamer”? Like to have your every gaming need met? To have them ensure your gaming whims are taken care of with every release? To have your hand held? To ensure that a huge company like Nintendo meets only your needs and not those of a huge audience? To that I say, put your big girl panties on and get over it. Casual gamers are here. To stay. And we are making the company that you are whining about a huge profit.
Just as every book is not a thriller and every movie is not and action/adventure movie, not every game is going to fall into the “hardcore” gaming category. That is just common sense and good business.
Feeling neglected? Feeling like game developers need to listen to what you want and what you need?
Go cry to your guild and move over. We want to play.