All About TaterTotsYum
Casual gaming is uniting gamers and nongamers. It's giving older players a chance to relive their gaming past and relate to younger gamers. It's flooding the internet, mobile phones, home consoles and handheld systems.The Wii and DS are in the hands of people who never before considered themselves to be gamers or even liked video games.
Casual gaming has found its way into schools and nursing homes, hospitals and homes where gaming was never allowed before. It is uniting gamer husbands and previously nongamer wives/girlfriends. Gaming systems have found their way onto the Christmas wishlists of the most unsuspecting, even avid nongamers.
Casual gaming is bringing joy to the waiting rooms, DMVs and airplanes of the world. Just a few weeks ago, I noticed a fifty-something woman having the time of her life while waiting for our two-hour delayed flight as she poked around furiously on a GBA. My mom has been playing Wii Sports at a friend's house (on poker night, nonetheless), and my sister signed up for a (get this...) Premium Pogo account a few months ago. She doesn't even like Donkey Konga.
But wait just a darn minute. Casual gaming is doing all this? I'm not a fan of defining words to make a point, but I'm breaking my rule because I feel this is utterly necessary:
Casual - cas·u·al - adjective -
1. happening by chance; fortuitous: a casual meeting.
2. without definite or serious intention; careless or offhand; passing: a casual remark.
3. seeming or tending to be indifferent to what is happening; apathetic; unconcerned: casual, nonchalent
So then I ask you, how on earth can a type of gaming referred to as "without definite or serious intention, careless, indifferent..." be causing all these changes. Casual gaming is redefining the industry, and it seems also to be redefining the word "casual" altogether. Taking this all into consideration, the following statistics on casual games are jaw-dropping:
* US casual game portal site Pogo.com, which is owned by video game publishers Electronic Arts, is the "stickiest site on the Internet," with 18 million people playing every month, and 1.5 million paid subscribers.
* Casual Games are a big business. DFC Intelligence has estimated that worldwide revenue from online casual games in 2005 was around about $700 million, with 45% of that ($314 million) coming in North America alone. By 2008, the North American online casual market is estimated to reach $690 million with worldwide revenue of over $1.5 billion.
* Worldwide over 150 million people – more than the number of households that own video game console systems – play free casual games via the Internet.
* The casual skill gaming market is currently estimated at $500 million with more than 8 million regular players playing for cash. Market size is estimated to double to $1 billion by 2010.
* In-game advertising is expected to experience the highest growth of any advertising type including the internet, growing from $370 million in 2006 to $2 billion in 2012 (a compound annual growth rate of 33%). Advertising in casual games in the US grew by 20% to $150 million from 2005 to 2006**. Also in the past year
Maybe we need a new term for "casual gaming." Maybe gaming is gaining popularity in general, and casual games just happen to be the most widespread. Maybe there are a lot of people out there sticking their feet in their mouths for making fun of "gamers" in the past. But one thing's for sure: Big time developers must take notice.
The FPS and RPG games the fill the cover pages of Game Informer and EGM may excite the core gaming audience, but they're no longer the only way to play. I wonder if we'll ever see the Pro Casual Gamers Association - and I wonder how far the "pros" could go in a game of Word Whomp or Bejeweled. And most of all, I wonder if this all means that office worker productivity is down. I'd bet my Wii-mote on it, honest to blog.
out of this
on your own
Aren't avatars funny?
When I start playing any game where I create my own avatar, I will almost always spend more time customizing (at least on my first sit-down) than I do actually playing the game. I'm not the type of gal who changes outfits 3-4 times a day. Heck, my fiance has more dirty clothes in the hamper than I do. I wear the same makeup and hairdo almost everyday, and I'm not even a huge fan of "accessories". Well, I do enjoy shoes, but usually you can barely make out an avatar's shoes anyway.
So why on earth do I spend SO long customizing my person? I suppose one reason is that after the first go-round, I rarely change their look... unless it's a task or something that is. In a way, having to change outfits and whatnot is more like work, once you've gotten into the game and have more "important" matters to attend to. Nonetheless, I got into the Twinity beta yesterday... but I couldn't tell you much about it because I customized "katelollar" for 2 hours and then had to cook dinner! It does look pretty sweet so far. And I wouldn't have had to spend so long on "katelollar's" face if I had just uploaded some pics of myself!
Ah, time. But why do I even care what my virtual counterpart looks like? I don't have the slightest idea.
Any thoughts on this? I'm not sure where this is headed...
My Recent Reviews
TaterTotsYum does not have any recent activity. What a slacker! Maybe you should send TaterTotsYum a private message and ask, "Where are you hiding?"