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Video Game» Forums » Video Game Related » General Video Gaming

Subject: Video Game Genre Percentages per Year rss

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Nick Reed
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I trawled our database today, seeing how many games associated with each of our genres were released each year. Grinding that down into percentages of games released per year, I thought it might show some interesting trends of how genres have appeared and died over the years. So, here's a chart:



(the blank section to fill up to 100% are the other genres, not individually shown here - I was only focusing on the top 30)

Of course, this is all subject to the games that have been entered into our database so far, and the interest areas of the VGGers who have entered them, but with close to 24,000 games in the system I would think we're not too far from reality here.
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This is a pretty neat graph. Really pretty!

This is also dependent on the accuracy and thoroughness of who is doing the data entry.

-And many games have multiple themes.
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Nick Reed
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frumpish wrote:
-And many games have multiple themes.

And genres
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Luke Stirling
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I'd hazard a guess that that big bulge in the Puzzle genre at the late end of the graph is likely due to the boom in mobile and perhaps also browser gaming.
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Nick Reed
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paralipsis wrote:
I'd hazard a guess that that big bulge in the Puzzle genre at the late end of the graph is likely due to the boom in mobile and perhaps also browser gaming.

Pretty much, yeah.
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This confirms my feeling that there are to few flight sims!
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...now onto themes!
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Hey, where are all the arcade games going?
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Barad_the_dwarf wrote:
Hey, where are all the arcade games going?
They're not less, the rest is more!
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_Kael_ wrote:
Barad_the_dwarf wrote:
Hey, where are all the arcade games going?
They're not less, the rest is more!

Exactly this. We have numerically more 2011 Arcade games in the system than we do 1982 Arcade games. It's just the percentages.
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Bah, "Arcade" is a platform, not a genre. And "Action" is a broad classification, not a genre. And "Scrolling" is definitely not a genre.
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Luke Stirling
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Given that genres are artificial constructs rather than objectively measurable values, it hardly matters. A graph like this is meant to represent broad brush strokes. None of it is scientific, and I don't think anybody involved in making genre inclusion decisions had any illusions that it was. It's entirely possible to dispute that something does or does not feel like a genre to you, but it's not really in the spirit of the collaborative effort that this site is to suggest something cannot be a genre because of that personal judgement.
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It's interesting now that we have all the technology to make stunning action games (or similar very well known genres), there's a rise for simpler, puzzle games (most of them, at least, are a lot simpler).

Perhaps we've outgrown our need for fancy visuals? I know I have, for the most part...
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Nick Reed
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bacusgod wrote:
It's interesting now that we have all the technology to make stunning action games (or similar very well known genres), there's a rise for simpler, puzzle games (most of them, at least, are a lot simpler).

Perhaps we've outgrown our need for fancy visuals? I know I have, for the most part...

Or years ago hardware capable of games only made into the hands of the technologically and games-focused portion of the populace. With everyone having a gaming device in their pocket nowadays though, mass market appeal games are intentionally less hardcore and easier to consume and understand.
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Nick Reed
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_Kael_ wrote:
...now onto themes!

Video Game Theme Percentages per Year
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The graph confuses me. Shouldn't genres like Flight Sims or Wargames start out high on the left and then drop sharply to the right side of this graph??

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wytefang wrote:
The graph confuses me. Shouldn't genres like Flight Sims or Wargames start out high on the left and then drop sharply to the right side of this graph??


Well, there wouldn't have been a huge percentage of the market as either at the far left hand side as early computers didn't have the power to render even simple flightsims pre-80's or run real-time wargames similarly in the era of turn-based gaming.

It looks like flightsim's prevalent days was in the 90's, from the graph, and RTS/strategy games (which wargames would be a subset of) have been relatively constant proportionally since 1980.
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bacusgod wrote:
It's interesting now that we have all the technology to make stunning action games (or similar very well known genres), there's a rise for simpler, puzzle games (most of them, at least, are a lot simpler).

Perhaps we've outgrown our need for fancy visuals? I know I have, for the most part...
No. It is just waaaaaaaay easier nowadays to create (and publish) simple little jewels.
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Love love love this chart! Thanks for putting it together Nick!
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Ncik wrote:
wytefang wrote:
The graph confuses me. Shouldn't genres like Flight Sims or Wargames start out high on the left and then drop sharply to the right side of this graph??


Well, there wouldn't have been a huge percentage of the market as either at the far left hand side as early computers didn't have the power to render even simple flightsims pre-80's or run real-time wargames similarly in the era of turn-based gaming.

It looks like flightsim's prevalent days was in the 90's, from the graph, and RTS/strategy games (which wargames would be a subset of) have been relatively constant proportionally since 1980.


Yet 'simulation' seems to have remained fairly constant from when it first appears in the 80s.

We don't have many flight or space simulators today. We don't have a lot of things like tank simulators (not like the heyday of games like M1 Tank Platoon, Wargasm).

We have a small number of train games, and of course a decent amount of driving games (though surely not significantly greater in proportion than in the 80s or 90s).

So where are all the simulators coming from?
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bryces wrote:
Ncik wrote:
wytefang wrote:
The graph confuses me. Shouldn't genres like Flight Sims or Wargames start out high on the left and then drop sharply to the right side of this graph??


Well, there wouldn't have been a huge percentage of the market as either at the far left hand side as early computers didn't have the power to render even simple flightsims pre-80's or run real-time wargames similarly in the era of turn-based gaming.

It looks like flightsim's prevalent days was in the 90's, from the graph, and RTS/strategy games (which wargames would be a subset of) have been relatively constant proportionally since 1980.


Yet 'simulation' seems to have remained fairly constant from when it first appears in the 80s.

We don't have many flight or space simulators today. We don't have a lot of things like tank simulators (not like the heyday of games like M1 Tank Platoon, Wargasm).

We have a small number of train games, and of course a decent amount of driving games (though surely not significantly greater in proportion than in the 80s or 90s).

So where are all the simulators coming from?


There are a number of sports management games that get tagged with "simulation" as a genre. That could be part of it.
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Nick Reed
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Gnomish Mustard wrote:
Love love love this chart! Thanks for putting it together Nick!

One more: Video Game Platform Percentages per Year
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Ziilch wrote:
bryces wrote:
Ncik wrote:
wytefang wrote:
The graph confuses me. Shouldn't genres like Flight Sims or Wargames start out high on the left and then drop sharply to the right side of this graph??


Well, there wouldn't have been a huge percentage of the market as either at the far left hand side as early computers didn't have the power to render even simple flightsims pre-80's or run real-time wargames similarly in the era of turn-based gaming.

It looks like flightsim's prevalent days was in the 90's, from the graph, and RTS/strategy games (which wargames would be a subset of) have been relatively constant proportionally since 1980.


Yet 'simulation' seems to have remained fairly constant from when it first appears in the 80s.

We don't have many flight or space simulators today. We don't have a lot of things like tank simulators (not like the heyday of games like M1 Tank Platoon, Wargasm).

We have a small number of train games, and of course a decent amount of driving games (though surely not significantly greater in proportion than in the 80s or 90s).

So where are all the simulators coming from?


There are a number of sports management games that get tagged with "simulation" as a genre. That could be part of it.
Games like Blazing Angels II: Secret Missions of WWII are also labeled 'flight sim', though I can't phantom why.
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Nick Reed
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_Kael_ wrote:
Games like Blazing Angels II: Secret Missions of WWII are also labeled 'flight sim', though I can't phantom why.

Is there a reason it shouldn't be?
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Most likely because it is more an arcade/action game than a real simulation.
Same reason why Battlefield 3 is no simulation (but ARMA 2 is).
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