The Toy-Game Interface: It’s A Trend.

OK, it’s a trend.

Yes, after weeks of me ranting about what’s going on in gaming, what it means for your career, and why I’m still confused half the time, there is a trend I distinctly want to call out.

Merchandise-game integration.  Let’s call it MGI so we have a cool acronym.

Awhile ago at NerdCaliber I called out that we were on a cusp of a trend where games were integrated heavily with merchandise. and marketing.  My example was Disney Infinity, which was pretty much “Skylanders” with Jack Sparrow and a sandbox mode.*  I felt this was one to watch because I could see a lot of properties done MGI style, and transcending some of the previous attempts out there.

(Disney is so confident, they don’t mind a delay – that may mean selling more)

Ironically, of the many properties I discussed where heavy MGI possibilities lay, I missed one, and of course some smart guys and girls ended up creating the most obvious MGI I could have seen, only I didn’t see it.

Read more

Interesting – Crossover games in Japan?

If you like Samurai and Pokemon, or Pirates gone Samurai, then check this out.

Unusual game crossovers and fusions aren’t new – Fighting games are infamous for them – but the crossovers currently available in Japan (pokemon/Nobunaga’s Ambition, One Piece/Warriors) are interesting to watch as they represent some insanely interesting crossovers.  You tell me you wouldn’t play One Pokepiece or Sengoku Luffy.

Yeah, you probably would.

This makes me wonder what possible and viable crossovers are out there yet to be done.  Look at Kingdom Hearts, a drunken elevator conversation of a game, that turned out to be insanely popular.

Steven Savage

Why There’s No Rival To Pokemon

So, where's the rival to Pokemon as a game?

I found myself asking this one day for reasons I can't quite remember (though I suspect it was about competing ecosystems of technology).  It's a fascinating question to ask because let's face it – there isn't one.  Pokemon has no rivals in its conceptual space, at least no worthy ones.

Sure, there are imitators of Pokemon, or games that may use some similar mechanics.  Dragon Quest Monsters perhaps comes closest in quality, but it's not the same runaway hit as Pokemon (though I'd say it's definitely it's own thing in the DQ game line as opposed to a derivation).  So where's the rival?

Read more