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Single player gaming doomed, say execs [UPDATE 1]

Jennie Lees

At the Churchill Club in California yesterday, Peter Moore wasn't the only one gazing into his crystal ball. Raph Koster of Sony Online Entertainment and Lars Butler, formerly of EA, were cheerfully predicting the downfall of single-player gaming, with Koster going so far as to say that the last 21 years of gaming history are an aberration.

Drawing from the fundamental principle that "people play games together", Koster and Butler predict a huge shift in the games industry as the impact of online gaming starts to really hit home. Butler's claim that "linear entertainment in single-player is to media what masturbation is to sex" is eerily similar to David Jaffe's comparison between games and porn. Experiences are enriched by the presence of other people, and perhaps the depth of multiplayer gaming and the online social interaction embodied in these games can provide the emotional content that Jaffe finds so lacking.

[Via Raph's Weblog]

[Update: Raph has written a much more detailed explanation behind his statement.]

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