Almost everyone who has gone online with the computer or a game console has probably downloaded something at one time or another, whether it's been a song, a photo, a game, or a set of horse armor for their equine friend. But are digital downloads the wave of the future for full-on distribution? Developers are hoping so, because it will cut down tremendously on competing for shelf space at the local Mega-Lo-Mart, not to mention all those costs for printing games, manuals, boxes, shipping, and the like.
The panel consisted of Craig Allen, CEO of Spark Unlimted one of the big "shelf" retailers, especially with their newly announced mega-game Turning Point: Fall of Liberty due this coming November. From the other end of things was Dan Conners, CEO of Telltale productions who is in the middle of releasing Sam & Max as an episodic game, before packaging everything up into a retail edition. In the middle (and sadly, without much to offer) was David Burks, the marketing manager for Seagate Technology. You gotta store the downloads somewhere, right? In all fairness, Seagate was one of the SXSW sponsors, and he probably felt a bit shoehorned into this panel.