VR, NFTs, and the Metaverse Didn’t Take Over Video Games, Nor AI
Stop me if you’ve heard this before. A new technology has emerged, is garnering billions in funding, and looks set to disrupt the entire video game industry.
To make that case the latest technology is AI, which is the buzzword of 2023, originally contained in projects like ChatGPT and Midjourney, but now expanding… Virtually every company is saying they will in some capacity. Going to use AI is futile though.
And yet I’ve been down this road too many times for far too long to believe the hype. Sure, AI can do some cool things, but the exact language I’m hearing here is what we’ve heard about a wide variety of other technology, not necessarily all of which have been banned as promised. Has gone.
BURLINGAME, CALIFORNIA – MAY 04: Meta employee Dennis Hampton prepares to demonstrate a video game … [+] which is played using an Oculus Quest 2 virtual reality headset at the new Meta Store on May 04, 2022 in Burlingame, California. Meta is set to open its first physical retail store on May 9th. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Yes, the VR market currently exists. No, it’s not that big compared to the wider industry, and no, we’re not about to switch to VR as the main way to play games. When the Oculus Rift first came out in 2016, heralding the future of games, it was predicted that the VR market would be worth hundreds of billions of dollars and would be the primary way we’d play games within 5, 10 years. We’re nearing year 10 here, and now we’re debating whether Meta is going to live up to its VR ambitions and whether PSVR 2 is really going to outdo PSVR 1.
Sure, there are VR enthusiasts, and millions of VR headsets have been sold. I own two of them, and yet they’ve probably been sitting in my closet for years after a few dozen hours of gameplay, compared to the few thousand hours I’ve sunk into my PC and console. VR in itself hasn’t “failed,” but it hasn’t lived up to its extravagant hype, and won’t any time soon.
A group of crypto bros and VCs who once knew very little about video games came up with the idea that NFTs, unique digital items that can be sold within a game, would be the next great form of microtransaction and a huge revenue stream. will be the source. The gaming industry is on the move.
And then they kept talking, saying you would have the ability to transfer these items between games, something every developer said was extremely stupid. The industry went further still and Ubisoft dipped its toe into this concept with things like the Ghost Recon NFT and was promptly zapped. The president of Square Enix regularly joked that Dr. Dishonor is still the only major gaming person out there pitching NFT and blockchain games. Everyone else has given up on the concept.
Actual blockchain games exist, but they are Insult Horrible, absolutely horrible games that, sure, could have generated some money for players at the height of this craze, but that’s quickly gone (hi Axi Infinity) and all that’s left is relative garbage like the Bore Ape game. Which is rushing players to spend thousands of dollars for “sewer passes” and other nonsense. in all other Real The gaming industry has run away from blockchain.
I didn’t even really need to write this section, because Ed Zitron wrote it for me along with a great Business Insider article that you need to read. The collapse of the metaverse is deeply evident that no one wants Tell 2023 is the word that everyone in tech has been screaming about for the past few years.
The Metaverse really just had two ideas. The first was Mark Zuckerberg’s, which he declared as the future of humanity, where he renamed his entire company (which I think he regrets now). But his idea was married to VR which, as we’ve established, is far from mainstream adoption. they also decided to use worst The VR experience on the planet, Horizon World, as the flagship for the concept, a product so bad that even meta employees were forced to log into it by their bosses. Now, users are pouring in and guess what it’s turning to? Aye.
The second metaverse was surprisingly tied to another thing, Web3, NFTs and blockchain. This was the version where you read about Macy’s and Disney and whoever else was buying up virtual real estate in insanely empty meta-dysoptopias like Decenterland or The Sandbox, “games” that had fewer concurrency than the first 300 titles on Steam. He was a player. This was nothing. It was always nothing, and actual video games did it better, creating virtual worlds and communities with millions of players long before anyone in technology thought they’d invented the idea and given it a name. which he had stolen from Neal Stephenson.
So yeah, you’ll forgive me if I’m skeptical of the idea that AI is going to arrive and hit the gaming industry like a meteor. yes i morning In fact I was more impressed with the technology than the last three things on this list. And yet at the same time, these massive predictions, far from “intelligent” AI, are clearly being exaggerated. No, I don’t believe game concept artists will be replaced by midjourney. No, I don’t believe narrative teams will be replaced by ChatGPT. No, I don’t believe a company that bills itself as the “ChatGPT of AAA games” will let you design your own Fortnite in seconds.
Are there aspects of AI that can be used in game development? Sure, and it’s probably more useful than the other technique on this list. But the idea that AI is going to completely rewrite the rules of game development and how we interact with games just isn’t going to happen, and anyone believing the next GTA is going to believe predictive text or (Stolen) The art is about to come out of the generator. Deeply out of touch with the reality of the industry. But this, of course, is nothing new.
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