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Industry veteran Raph Koster has stated that immersion in games simply isn't relevant in today's market.

In a personal blog Koster wrote:

"Immersion does not make a lot of sense in a mobile, interruptable world. It comes from spending hours at something. [And] the fact is that as games go mainstream, they are played in small bites far more often than they are played in long solo sessions. The market adapts — this reaches more people, so the budgets divert, the publishers' attention diverts, the developers' creative attention diverts."

He goes on to explain that the time of immersion as a style of design has passed because games now cater to all types of players, including those who don't look for immersion.

"Immersion isn't a mass market activity in that sense, because most people are comfortable being who they are and where they are. It's us crazy dreamers who are unmoored, and who always seek out secondary worlds."

He adds: "I mourn the gradual loss of deep immersion and the trappings of geekery that I love. I see the ways in which the worlds I once dove into headlong have become incredibly expansive endeavours, movies-with-button-presses far more invested in telling me their story, rather than letting me tell my own."

Raph Koster has previously worked on Ultima Online and Star Wars Galaxies.

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Woffls's Avatar


People speak of some drastic alteration in the market that means long games are no longer justified, but really the market has just expanded, and people are getting older.

There's a whole new generation of gamers who are spending hundreds of hours on games because they have the time to do so, much like we used to. Just because we, as enthusiasts or industry folk, and our friends are playing differently does not mean that another demographic hasn't taken our place.

A market will always exist for the more involved games, but there's a lot of people who are getting carried away with how the industry changes, that they forget the ways in which it has stayed the same.
Posted 13:24 on 16 January 2012

Game Stats

Release Date: 01/01/2007
Developer: EA Mythic
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Genre: Fantasy RPG
No. Players: 1 + Online
Rating: TBC
Site Rank: 14,305 17
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