Thursday, December 27, 2018

But nothing beats the printing press

I spend a lot of time ruminating about the development of games and milestones in gaming. A lot of the time, that involves looking at specific games and game mechanics.

But sometimes, it’s also worth noting technological and social changes. I mean, how much of a debt does gaming owe to the printing press? And clearly Kickstarter has had a big effect, although, let’s face it. It’s no printing press :D

Two developments that I found myself thinking about over breakfast  were the internet and international shipping.

Okay. The global and cultural effect of the internet is way beyond any easy summary. It is the subject of countless books and thesis (the plural is theses but, man, that looks funny) It has changed the world.

How this applies to game development really struck me when I first read Gamut of Games by Sid Sackson. In addition to the actual games, he discusses collecting games and corresponding with other game designers (who designed some of the games in the book) In the post-internet world, developing a network of designers would have be mind boggling easier!

And while it seems to actually becoming more difficult than it used to be (I might be wrong but I swear shipping rates are going up faster than the price of games) but being able to actually get games from across the Atlantic that weren’t available in the U.S. was amazing back when I first started looking at games (and Fred Flintstone was part of my gaming group and brontosaurus ribs were a table snack)

Okay. The internet is the bigger deal. But, at least for me, the internet and international shipping made a powerful combination when I was first really discovering the broader world of gaming. I could have never found about so much without one and couldn’t have gotten ahold of so much without the other. 

Ten years earlier, I could not have had the same experience.

The world of gaming has changed and is changing and a big part of it is that the world has changed period.

And the printing press, that was a big deal.

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