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Old 01-22-2007, 09:53 PM   #23
After a brisk nap
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Originally Posted by eXo View Post
But just because someone can list a couple games that have been released (hotel dusk, ace attorney, runaway, whatever) doesn't mean there is some thriving adventure game market out there.
Can you not conceive of some middle ground between "dead" and "thriving"?

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In the 90's there were hundreds of these games released. Is someone here actually trying to convicne me that a genre which once consisted of 20-30 titles per year is still viable due to a measly 3 or 4 games?
The AG database lists reviews for 32 commercial releases in 2006, and at least half of those were relatively big releases (Ankh, Keepsake, Dreamfall, Sam & Max, etc.).

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It means that studios no longer find it viable to release adventure titles for profit.
Well, clearly a number of studios do, or there wouldn't have been any games for sale.

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Most games released these days are by fans - for fans. Just because some company cranks out nancy drew games doesnt mean the entire industry isn't dead - it just means that one company is taking advantage of the obvious void and making a couple bucks off of it.
Actually, one company continuing to make adventure games would mean that not the entire industry was dead. Of course, it's not just one company, but a whole handful. Dozens, or more.

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Yet a company who releases a crappy cell phone game based on star wars can make double that.
By the time they pay off the licensing fees to LEC, I wouldn't be so sure of that.

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Vivendi Universals recent handling of the sierra game compilations is a perfect example of just how significat adventure games are to the commerical video game market - ie: null. We got crappy boxes with pdf manuals, missing titles (ll7, original non-vga versions), buggy versions (kq7), and even stripped down versions (ll6 voices missing).

If the adventure game wasn't 'commercially dead' then we (the adventure game community) wouldnt have been treated to such a half-assed release.
I bought some of the Sierra compilations back in the mid nineties, and it was pretty much the same deal back thenn.

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Again - to repeat - just becasue a small developer puts a game together and sells it for $20 does NOT mean that adventure games are not commercially dead.
As you pointed out earlier, repetition does not make something true.

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To say otherwise is ignoring:
A: release figures
B: reviews of a majority of recent games (see last post on this for further details)
C: complete disregard of old titles by BOTH Lucasarts AND Sierra.
Why should we care about LEC and Vivendi? They got out of the adventure game business a long time ago. They are huge corporations, only interested in games with mainstream appeal that will sell millions. Just because adventure games aren't that doesn't make them failures.

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A crapload of myst clones, fmv games, with a few fan gems thrown in for good measure do not add up to a thriving industry.
FMV? I can hardly remember the last time I saw a FMV game. You're ten years late on this rant.

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People around here can debate on what a 'dead genre' means until the cows come home. I believe there is still a great level of artistry in the genre - but commercially (ie: economically) there is hardly any money to be made. New businesses are not entering, and all the old established companies have left. Now, if thats not economically dead, then what is? And seriously - selling any game for $5-15 bucks is a bloody joke, thats just covering the cost of pretzels and twinkies consumed during the proggraming, it's definately not paying anyone's rent.
It's demonstrably untrue that new developers aren't entering the market. The most obvious counterexample is Telltale, but if you look through the list of games recent, you'll see that quite a lot of them were made by new companies. And as for covering the rent, don't you think that depends on how much the game cost to develop, and how many copies it sells?

Yeah, the genre could certainly be in better shape, business-wise. We're not going to see many blockbuster releases (if any) for the foreseeable future. And that does limit the kind of adventure games that can be made, and the production values that can be achieved.

But not every music artist needs to be Gwen Stefani, and not every games company needs to be EA. Lots of companies thrive in niches, making a comfortable living doing something the big guys can't be bothered with. I don't see why the same can't be true for adventure games.
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