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Why Core Gamers Hate Social Gamers: Is it all About the Money?

Date: Mar 28 2011 06:00:50 Source: games.com Views:
KeyWord: GamesBrief, Social Gamers, Core Gamers,FarmVille

Isn't it always about the Benji's? GamesBrief seems to think so in its short and sweet estimation of why exactly core gamers--i.e. those who wouldn't dare put the controller down for FarmVille--hate social gamers. First of all, the post draws a line between what a core and a casual audience is, while doing the same for core and casual gamers.

Why Core Gamers Hate Social Gamers: Is it all About the Money?

According to GamesBrief, 90 percent of "core gamers" don't even finish the games they buy, which cost $40 on average, while the dedicated 10 percent reaps the benefits. How, do you say? "In the core games market, the casual or non-dedicated player subsidizes the gaming enjoyment of the core gamer," GamesBrief says. In other words, traditional games would be nothing without the majority that wastes money on games they'll never finish, thus funding future releases for dedicated fans to play.

However, because social games are free to play, 90 percent of players will never pay to play though virtual goods purchases. This is because they don't have to--the remaining 10 percent that is willing to pay is what keeps companies like Zynga afloat. In short, it's the paying minority that allows social games to support casual audiences who will never pay a dime. So, what does this leave us with?

"So what we are seeing in the social games market is that the players who love the game are actually paying for the amount of enjoyment they are getting; in the core market, the people who getting lots of enjoyment are doing so at the expense of others," GamesBrief says. So, the bitterness that core gamers feel for social gamers stems from fear that more casual gamers will give up on spending $40 or more for games they'll never finish in favor of free, Facebook games. Whether this is subconscious or exactly what publishers like EA or Activision discuss in board room meetings (or entirely false) is unknown. Regardless, the song still remains: Haters gon' hate.

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