How much hype does it take?

I was thinking again about the wave of hype from various games that washed over us last week.

As a gamer and a general fan, it doesn’t take all that much to persuade me to buy/ try a new game. An interesting IP, a game studio who have produced work I’ve liked in the past, a friend who played the game and liked it, an interesting mechanic/ twist that catches my attention – any of those would be enough.

It sounds so simple. I knew that I’d play SWTOR and try GW2 when they were announced, for example. And yet there are countless games in the genre that I’ve never tried. Maybe they just didn’t have enough hype.

So in comparison to the bright and shiny trailers, look at Tobold’s posts this week about his experiences in A Tale in the Desert. I subbed for a month, because he reminded me of the things I had liked about the game when I last played it (I played for a few months during telling 3).

Zubon commented this week that he enjoyed reading blogs about games he hadn’t played much himself. I’d agree with that, and say also that sometimes it is the word of mouth that is the most compelling hype of all.

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7 thoughts on “How much hype does it take?

  1. No hype at all I’d say. I deliberately try to stay clear of hype. Want me to play your game? Just release a ton of information on it and provide a free demo. If I liked the information I will try the demo, if I like the demo I will buy the game. Oh and things like video diaries are damn unnecessary. I don’t want some guy who is totally in love with his own game to distract me from the real information. Generally, the more interactive they try to make the information on the game the more I suspect that they are trying to mask some shortcoming.

  2. I was always more or less, but have become even more of a skeptic in the years I’ve been playing MMOs. I’m a “player” and devote a lot of time and effort into the game I play so I’m not the type to try everything new that hits the street. And I rarely take anything said about a game at face value. Right now the only game on the horizon I truly want to try is SWTOR although I do have some reservations about it. I’m in that “hoping things get worked out” phase and will wait and watch over the coming months.

    I may also check in on LotRO and DDO though I already know I won’t stay. If I do play them it will just be to get my feet wet and take a look around before I head out. I’m generally not a fan of the F2P model.

    • Unfortunately, and I have seen this personally as someone who is following the development of several games, there’s a large chunk of people who don’t read any information even though it’s readily available on wikis and faqs as well as on the developer’s sites. Perhaps these are people who are not genuinely curious about the game and would never play it anyway, but to not attempt to advertise the game at all would be a lot of lost sales because folks are generally not curious about new and different things. With so many MMOs having to close their doors due to lack of sales in the first place (and you hear a lot of “this is the first time I’m hearing of this” when they shut down, too), I can’t say I agree this is the direction developers should head in.

      Don’t get me wrong, I seek out that information because I love to, and have at least tried every MMO out there that would install and execute on my computer. But I don’t think there are that many people like me, and I don’t think I’m the majority in MMO populations.

  3. I like riding the hype train. I just hate when it crashes into a wall of broken promises. Hype is fun if you understand it is just for fun.

    I feel like I’ve missed out on some great games because the lack of hype they get. Some companies can’t spend millions on ads.

  4. The hype train goes – ooooh shiny!

    Seriously though, I think hype today plays a much bigger role for me to consider a title worth sinking my heard earned doubloons into. This is probably why I will play Guild Wars 2. I never played the first, but the “we’re changing the way MMOs work” hype has me by the throat!

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