I'm a Human Inbox

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Doug Lowenstein comparing the movie industry with the gaming industry

Doug Lowenstein gave an amazing speech at E3, talking about how the videogame industry is a long ways behind the movie industry, market growth, game funding and mainstream appeal. There are far too many good observations and statements to go over here, but there's one thing I want to mention. I do not think gaming needs to become like movies. Cinematics and emotional impact are important yes, but games are a different kind of medium, and as such should focus on what it does best. Provide interactive entertainment.

In any case, I recommend reading this article.

How many of you have written at any time that the video game industry is bigger than Hollywood, or have heard someone in the industry make such a claim?

Let’s set the record straight once and for all: it is simply not true -- yet.

It has never been true. Yes, when you add video game hardware sales and software sales together, you come up with a figure which exceeds the total box office take of the film industry. But including hardware sales in the figure skews the comparison. Why not include the sales of DVD players? And even if you think it is valid to include console, handheld and related hardware sales in the calculation, it fails to account for the streams of additional revenue produced by Hollywood, from DVD and VCR rental and sales to syndication of films for broadcast and cable TV. In truth, the worldwide film industry stands at about $45 billion and the worldwide video game industry checks in at around $28 billion.