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#1 Wumpus

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Posted 04 March 2012 - 01:25 PM

Hello everyone!

The MacGameCast crew are looking for mac gamers to interview. All are welcome, new or experienced, young and old. We want to ask you questions like:

- How often do you follow game news?

- Are reviews important? Do you read them?

- What is the mac game community to you, do you participate?

- Do you want more coverage of mac gaming?

- How would you like to see mac gaming and the community improve and move forward?

Anyone interested in coming on and talking to us about this would be great. Basically looking to get a portrait of what you would call "A typical mac gamer" and their views on the community, press and more as well as a little bit about themselves. This probably couldn't happen for a few weeks from now, but wanted to put this out. If interested or willing, leave a comment! If more than one person wants to jump on the show, that can be accommodated.

Shameless plug: Episode 16 out now
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#2 Matt Diamond

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Posted 08 March 2012 - 09:51 PM

This is a neat idea. If it doesn't pan out, at least throw a few polls up, see if you can get a discussion going on this topic in the forums. Maybe at that point you'll have some ideas to talk about, maybe even some names of people who have stuff to say on it.

Just brain-storming here...

I definitely don't know the answers to the questions on the podcast that prompted this topic. While the audience of gamers and the types of Mac games have both changed, my own gaming circumstances and tastes have also changed. Its very hard to separate it all and objectively put a finger on why Mac gaming and game coverage seems to be moribund, despite the record numbers of Macs being sold and the Intel transition.

I think part of it may be that people just don't get their game news the way they used to. IMG's earliest incarnation was a monthly floppy disk mailed to people's houses. Then it was a highly successful website & forum. But maybe people don't need a central site or community as much now? And we don't have many demos, PC gaming is also declining, and iOS games are taking off... hard to separate cause and effect.

Might want to talk to the IMG webmasters; maybe they have some year-by-year traffic statistics that would be interesting to you. And to get back to your questions about what specifically people are interested in, ask them which IMG pages get the traffic, how many forum accounts are active, etc.

If you could interview a Mac game journalist like Peter Cohen, Tuncer, Corey Tamas, or Omaha on this subject I'd bet you'd get an earful. Or for that matter Mac game publishers. There might not be consensus, but people who are trying to make a living in this field are likely to have more of a clue than us amateurs. :-)
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#3 Eric5h5

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Posted 08 March 2012 - 10:31 PM

View PostMatt Diamond, on 08 March 2012 - 09:51 PM, said:

PC gaming is also declining
If by "declining" you mean "growing", then yes.

--Eric

#4 The Liberator

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Posted 09 March 2012 - 07:15 PM

Hey Wumpus, I have finally jumped on the MGC bandwagon* and have just finished listening to your shameless plug of a podcast episode. I am willing to talk on the show.

Lib.

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#5 the Battle Cat

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Posted 09 March 2012 - 07:32 PM

Grill the Liberator on his legos vids!
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#6 The Liberator

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Posted 09 March 2012 - 09:48 PM

View Postthe Battle Cat, on 09 March 2012 - 07:32 PM, said:

Grill the Liberator on his legos vids!
:lol: I completely forgot about that.

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#7 Matt Diamond

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Posted 09 March 2012 - 10:08 PM

View PostEric5h5, on 08 March 2012 - 10:31 PM, said:


Thanks for the correction. I'd been hearing the "dying" mantra for so long I'd started to parrot it. (Though they are talking about profit here, and that doesn't necessarily = healthy from the hardcore gamers POV. WOW and casual games have gotten good at monetizing, for example. Or is it like the iOS store: more titles, less profit per title? I'm quite curious.)

And certainly things are pretty exciting on the Indie side. (But are they making much of the money?)

And could one say the same thing about Mac gaming? Are total dollars up, even though the press coverage and # of AAA Mac titles is down? (Or am I wrong about those "facts" as well?)
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#8 Eric5h5

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 05:24 AM

View PostMatt Diamond, on 09 March 2012 - 10:08 PM, said:

And could one say the same thing about Mac gaming? Are total dollars up, even though the press coverage and # of AAA Mac titles is down? (Or am I wrong about those "facts" as well?)
The number of AAA titles is actually higher now than it has been in some years, thanks largely to Feral stepping up (also Valve, and Ubisoft).  As for sales, I don't really know, though I recall that Feral said the Mac App Store doubled their sales, so it seems likely dollars are up.

--Eric

#9 Wumpus

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 04:07 PM

View PostMatt Diamond, on 08 March 2012 - 09:51 PM, said:

This is a neat idea. If it doesn't pan out, at least throw a few polls up, see if you can get a discussion going on this topic in the forums. Maybe at that point you'll have some ideas to talk about, maybe even some names of people who have stuff to say on it.
Polls are great fun, though they seemed to die off ages ago, and I don't have permissions to post them. Will see if I can make that happen. Otherwise so far we have at least one person willing to come on the show :)

View PostMatt Diamond, on 08 March 2012 - 09:51 PM, said:

Just brain-storming here...

I definitely don't know the answers to the questions on the podcast that prompted this topic. While the audience of gamers and the types of Mac games have both changed, my own gaming circumstances and tastes have also changed. Its very hard to separate it all and objectively put a finger on why Mac gaming and game coverage seems to be moribund, despite the record numbers of Macs being sold and the Intel transition.

I think part of it may be that people just don't get their game news the way they used to. IMG's earliest incarnation was a monthly floppy disk mailed to people's houses. Then it was a highly successful website & forum. But maybe people don't need a central site or community as much now? And we don't have many demos, PC gaming is also declining, and iOS games are taking off... hard to separate cause and effect.
The IMG forum has 10,000 + registered members. Seems like there's only maybe like 100 who are regularly active though. Even among the smaller portion of people who do frequent the forum and regularly post I would expect more discussion to go on, but it doesn't seem to. Maybe they don't need the site or community...but IMG is really the only one unless you count the few european mac game sites that are italian or german or french.

Eric already addressed the "PC gaming declining" thing above, so I won't say much on it, other than he's right. Its certainly not outpacing/growing the Console crowd, but its definitely seeing a fair resurgence of late. MMO's are still the one area PC beats Consoles easy. WoW obviously being the top of the list with 10 + million people playing, and things like TOR which is also proving very popular. I still see a large favoritism towards consoles even with multi-platform development/releases which is both annoying and disappointing. id's RAGE is a great example of this, as it only semi feels like a PC (now also Mac) game with large "consoley" overtones and limitations. At $60 pre-order (which I did) I felt very cheated to get a poorly ported console game instead of a great PC experience. The Mac version fares better, but its still there on some levels. There's very few games and devs (on the higher end) who can create a game that actually feels like a PC/Mac game instead of a ported or compromised title. Maybe gamers who own both a console and a computer don't mind, but I always do.

View PostMatt Diamond, on 08 March 2012 - 09:51 PM, said:

Might want to talk to the IMG webmasters; maybe they have some year-by-year traffic statistics that would be interesting to you. And to get back to your questions about what specifically people are interested in, ask them which IMG pages get the traffic, how many forum accounts are active, etc.

If you could interview a Mac game journalist like Peter Cohen, Tuncer, Corey Tamas, or Omaha on this subject I'd bet you'd get an earful. Or for that matter Mac game publishers. There might not be consensus, but people who are trying to make a living in this field are likely to have more of a clue than us amateurs. :-)
This is a great idea. I remember Peter Cohen posting a lot for MacWorld wasn't it? I'll have to look him up as he doesn't work there anymore. Tuncer is super hard to reach so that seems unlikely. (I'll try anyway.) I'm a fan of Corey Tamas (so sad macgamer.com died) so will definitely try for him. I know Omaha runs the iGame Radio but I'm honestly not a fan of the site or the podcast/show so wouldn't pursue that angle.

View PostThe Liberator, on 09 March 2012 - 07:15 PM, said:

Hey Wumpus, I have finally jumped on the MGC bandwagon* and have just finished listening to your shameless plug of a podcast episode. I am willing to talk on the show.

Lib.
:D Thanks for volunteering. I'll get in touch soon to talk more about that and when it can happen. Wouldn't be until the last week of this month either way.

View PostMatt Diamond, on 09 March 2012 - 10:08 PM, said:

Thanks for the correction. I'd been hearing the "dying" mantra for so long I'd started to parrot it. (Though they are talking about profit here, and that doesn't necessarily = healthy from the hardcore gamers POV. WOW and casual games have gotten good at monetizing, for example. Or is it like the iOS store: more titles, less profit per title? I'm quite curious.)

And certainly things are pretty exciting on the Indie side. (But are they making much of the money?)

And could one say the same thing about Mac gaming? Are total dollars up, even though the press coverage and # of AAA Mac titles is down? (Or am I wrong about those "facts" as well?)
Very interesting thoughts here. As a "hardcore" gamer I care little about casual and iOS games, and I'm even not into MMO's, but that's a different category. I still turn to Bootcamp for a lot of my gaming since there's a lot of games that simply don't make it to Mac that I like to play. There is certainly a developer side to this. I know Mac game porting houses/devs aren't rolling in the dough, since it costs a fair amount to create or port a title, and they have to sell a lot of units to break even or profit. Still they are in business so it must be working. Mostly its just an issue of userbase since there are only so many mac gamers out there compared to PC or console crowds which are huge.

I have a strong interest in the Indie scene, and intend to ramp up the coverage of them in the next few months. There's something going on there every day, and it totally misses the news, IMG included. I think that's a terrible shame since there's a lot of fun and creative games from Indies and they have lots to say too. I think most struggle to get by, but some do hit it big and do well. Also it seems anyone who was part of a Humble Indie Bundle ended up doing quite well for themselves.

Press coverage is definitely down...but as Eric says below the # of AAA titles is slowly growing. Aspyr does their fair share as well, so don't forget them. ;) Virtual Programming also releases games..but nothing really AAA. I think 2012 is going to be a pretty awesome year for mac gamers all around as Feral & Aspyr do have a lot of cool games up their sleeves (as it were) that should see release. With any luck we'll see AC: Revelations this year from Ubisoft, but a release date is unknown.
Transgaming is a mixed bag of casual/weird/cool game releases, but I'm very excited about the upcoming Darkness 2 which should be out this month, and is definitely considered a AAA title.

View PostEric5h5, on 10 March 2012 - 05:24 AM, said:

The number of AAA titles is actually higher now than it has been in some years, thanks largely to Feral stepping up (also Valve, and Ubisoft).  As for sales, I don't really know, though I recall that Feral said the Mac App Store doubled their sales, so it seems likely dollars are up.

--Eric
I think dollars/sales are up in some areas. We are dealing with a semi worldwide recession in some cases, or at least in the states, but people still buy entertainment. I don't have stats particularly either but as Eric said Feral has done well off the MAS, and I'm sure other folks like Aspyr have as well given the increased exposure/visibility it brings. I think the more games (and more quality games) that get released by the porting houses and companies (Valve, Ubisoft etc) then the better things do. Seems like simple enough logic anyway, and I know I'm much more inclined to buy a great game versus just an okay one. I still think part of the issue is press/marketing as there's only so much of it. As I talked about on the last MGC episode PC/Console gamers get access to previews and sneak peeks of games well in advance of release, and often get 2-3 looks at a game before its out. Reviews also usually happen day of release or within a few days after. I think all those things help promote the games and inform the gamers a lot better, versus it just coming out of nowhere, or only learning of it a week or few days before release. Some exceptions on Mac of course, but most releases still happen suddenly with a little advertising and maybe a preview. At best you'll get a pre-order page which is something, but not overtly useful.

All things I'd like to rectify somehow, so we'll see what this year brings all around. :)
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#10 The Liberator

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 04:59 PM

View PostWumpus, on 10 March 2012 - 04:07 PM, said:

:D Thanks for volunteering. I'll get in touch soon to talk more about that and when it can happen. Wouldn't be until the last week of this month either way.
Okay, sure.

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#11 edddeduck

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 08:01 AM

View PostWumpus, on 10 March 2012 - 04:07 PM, said:

This is a great idea. I remember Peter Cohen posting a lot for MacWorld wasn't it? I'll have to look him up as he doesn't work there anymore. Tuncer is super hard to reach so that seems unlikely. (I'll try anyway.) I'm a fan of Corey Tamas (so sad macgamer.com died) so will definitely try for him.

Peter is now working at The Loop you can also find him on twitter.

Cory Tamas can be found on twitter or his site.

Tuncer I think has some site called IMG I dunno.... :)

Hope that saves you some looking

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#12 tcrown

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Posted 13 March 2012 - 04:59 PM

It would be interesting if IMG would do some hard research on current Mac marketshare as it relates to games. With record Mac sales quarter after quarter for the last 5 years and Apple owning the $1000+ laptop market
the current market share numbers seem way wrong. With that information in hand It would be interesting to hear directly from developers and Publishers why there is still a reluctance to release Mac ports concurrently with
the PC or not at all? It would also be interesting to hear from Developers on sales numbers from the Mac App store vs retail vs other online stores?
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#13 Wumpus

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 06:46 PM

All very interesting thoughts. I'll see what I can do about it when I get some free time. Keep in mind that even though we are a game site and have access to some things, we certainly don't have access to everything. But I'm sure I can dig something up anyway.

Someone like Tuncer could do that a lot easier given he runs MGS, but its unlikely he'll tell us :P
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