We must act NOW to fix digital chart crisis

Michael French
We must act NOW to fix digital chart crisis

The games industry needs to get its act together and be more open about digital sales. This is not a warning from senior trade figures, but a warning from MCV itself. 

For too long, we have reported on the dawning of a new digital chart. UKIE is working tirelessly to create the first chart that the industry desperately needs. The first one is close.

But a chart alone is not enough. The games industry must embrace an openness about sales numbers for the sake of its reputation AND its health.

The latest reports from chart trackers show that the games market is in decline. The headlines these spark deter investors, making it difficult for studios to find profitable areas of business and putting off students from starting a career in games.

But the ‘official’ stats don’t reflect the market’s health. Booming browser, mobile and downloadable sectors are still unacknowledged.

In music and movies, download numbers are part of the mix. Those markets have got over their arrogance and are sharing data. Games firms must follow suit. Doing otherwise is a deep-rooted issue that needs to be squashed out.

UKIE has called on digital firms to join its group and contribute – and you MUST listen to them. If you haven’t yet, then why not? Do you want games to be constantly tarnished by the unpredictable fortunes of boxed products? Microsoft, Nintendo, Sony, Steam – you are not excluded from this. Silence is no good anymore. It is not 21st Century thinking. 

Maybe these companies have something to hide, maybe they fear what sharing this data will do. But if that’s the case, they have no place in video games’ future. Only the digital pioneers will be remembered for driving this industry’s future. The question is: Are you one of them?

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Tags: video games , Digital , Charts

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1 comment

Any student put off by 'declining games market' was never going to make it. It's not like it's going to disappear, and they should be doing it because they love games. Markets wouldn't make any difference to that.
Music and movies would included downloads as it benefits them, I imagine CD and DVD sales have dropped right off. Downloads will continue regardless of 'boxed fortunes'. You're not a pioneer unless you share your data? Really.

To like something it has to be at the top of a chart does it. Perhaps including download data would give a better picture for others but it's not really going to make a big difference. What kind of investors don't look at the long term. What ever happened to creating something just to create it.

James Knight

James Knight ELITE GAMER
Jan 13th 2012 at 5:40PM

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