Isn't it odd, how games released in today's modern industry are often singled out for not including microtransactions and aggressive monetisation models? It was once the case that triple-A stalwarts like Call of Duty introducing loot boxes would have generated backlash on a cosmic scale, but now? It's a (reluctantly) accepted part of the triple-A market that has wormed its way into normality through desensitisation.
That outstanding games like Breath of the Wild, God of War and Spider-Man, to name but a few, are congratulated for shunning such shady practices shouldn't be an extraordinary occasion, but the norm.
Instead, it's mega-publishers like Activision and EA that have standardised the rules and in doing so, inflated their profit margins with unsustainable growth. The bubble is going to burst eventually, and when that day comes, it'll be the increasingly corporate-minded entities mentioned above that, quite rightly, attract most of the blame for the industry going to hell in a handbasket.
Then again, if BioWare and Bethesda's current trajectory is any indication, they'll both have plenty to contribute to the games industry's headstone. If there's one growing trend that popular opinion hates enough to rival loot boxes, it's being treated as unpaid beta testers for so-called 'triple-A' experiences.
Will Anthem and Fallout 76 achieve their final forms before or after the crash, I wonder?
Joe is a freelance games journalist who, while not spending every waking minute selling himself to websites around the world, spends his free time writing. Most of it makes no sense, but when it does, he treats each article as if it were his Magnum Opus - with varying results.