Sarcastic Gamer, Many of the IGN staffers, they are all jumping on the bandwagon. It’s Wii bashing time. All you hear is that they are ruining the market for hardcore gamers. And shovel-ware abounds.
Shovel-ware always abounds on the hottest selling platform. Atari, NES, PS2. All systems that had tons of bad games released. This isn’t new.
And there are things about last generation games that have been helped by the “casual market”. Parents and grandparents playing games exposes them to the variety of games in the market. Hence, they will be more informed about the shaped of the market the next time they hear some jackass like Bill O’Reilly ranting on a game like GTA IV. Also, a lot of games are shorter. If you have the substance, I can enjoy a 40+ game (rpgs, etc). But do I need a hack-n-slash game to add 20 more levels of filler? Heavenly sword was a bad buy for it’s length, but it was a great rental.
Finally, you can enjoy both. I have a Wii, and like that my wife will play Big Brain, Wii Sports, or Mario Kart with me. I don’t care that Wii Sports has trimmed down options and one course. I used to spend hours playing combat and warlords on the Atari growing up, how much variety did those games have? And I play some more “hardcore” games myself on the Wii (Mario Galaxy, Zelda, Battalion Wars, Fire Emblem). Even some of the Wii Ware are worth mentioning, I’ve been getting a kick out of the Crystal Chronicles mini-game.
I have other platforms, and I can play more traditional games there. I’ve been through Mass Effect, Portal, Heavenly Sword, FF3 DS, Halo 3, and more in the last year. I’d say that takes me out of the “casual” realm. But that doesn’t stop me from playing Wii Sports.
If you still aren’t convinced, answer this question. My in-laws have a Wii, and play games on it even when they don’t have visitors under the age of 30. If you put a PS3 or 360 on their TV and took away the Wii, would that continue? No way. What’s going to keep them going, Viva Pinata? Calling all Cars? Pixeljunk Monsters? As “casual” as those games are, the traditional controller still pushes away a lot of older users.
Mass Effect, Halo 3, Mario Galaxy, Bioshock, Metal Gear Solid 4, GTA IV, and CoD 4 were all released in the last calendar year. I’d say the hardcore gaming market is doing just fine.