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Friday, August 18, 2000
Dying Game Genres?
10:30 AM | Tom Bridge | Comment on this story

In a special article posted on CNet's Gamecenter.com, their editors consign to the watery deep five game genres that are fading out more quickly than Voodoo2 cards or cargo pants. The game genres they consider in peril are Adventure games, Combat Flight Sims, Real-Time Strategy games, Sci-Fi combat sims and war simulations.

While we can think of counter-examples to many of their proclamations, it is an interesting look into the short history of games and where they might be headed. Here's an excerpt on why the adventure game is dead, which is actually a mini-rant against Myst, for some reason:

Why it's vanishing: We blame Myst for all of this. In the olden days, back when the concept of a gigabyte was nothing more than a wishful glimmer in some engineer's eye, we tended to our beautiful adventure games, like the Quest series (King's Quest, Space Quest, and so on), and enjoyed our puzzles and our exploration. Those Sierra classics were gems of true puzzle mastery. Before them were the golden days of Infocom, back when Zork ruled in mere text adventures telling stories that were just the beginnings of interactive gaming. It was a wondrous time.
The authors, the editors of Gamecenter, do believe that some of these genres, specifically real-time strategy games, are dead in the creative sense -- titles are still being churned out, but with no innovation. However, we might be spared some of the carnage. Glenn Rubinstein is relatively optimistic about the genre of war games when he says:
Enter the Internet, which could very well be war gaming's salvation. Since the Internet allows niche communities to grow and flourish, we're seeing war gaming switch to an Internet-only model of publishing and distribution. Firaxis and TalonSoft, for instance, have both dabbled with selling war games online. Then there's Shrapnel Games and Matrix Games, two relatively new war gaming publishers who sell primarily online.
The future is not all dim, but some stars that were once in ascendancy may be fading fast from the gaming market. Or more likely, the lines between the staid genres that used to define the market are fading, and we will see more games that combine multiple genres, such as Heavy Metal F.A.K.K.2 (action and adventure) and Deus Ex (shooter and RPG). Give the Gamecenter article a read, and then come back and share your thoughts on our Forums.

Dying Game Genres at Gamecenter

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