The "there can't be a Netflix-like service in video games" takes are incredibly wrong/facile
Are video v gaming dynamics very different (monetization, distribution of consumption, role of exclusivity)? Yes. Super
That means the model will look different. Not that it won't exist
I've been sent this article dozens of times. It's not wrong, it's just so close minded + assumes nothing is changed or unlocked via subscription, or that over time, consumer wants aren't met one way or another. fastcompany.com/90518787/why-y…
Reminds me of saying "Yes, free to play games can reach more players, but how can you make up for 15MM people paying $50 every two years - that math doesn't work"
It's flawed, limited to old models, and misses the fact the value today is server-side where Metcalfe's law rules
"Can Theaters Survive" requires looking at why they were already struggling. There are a few challenges and I don't see ANY path to turning ANY of the trends meaningfully around.
1. Per capita attendance declining for 20 years, worst drop among the young and the most consumptive 2. Reduction in # of major films going to box office 3. Growth in at-home substitutes (TV + SVOD + Games) 4. Hollywood growing output for SVOD-only release too (esp. Disney + WB)
5. Too many film screens (esp in malls), which when closed, will mean fewer showtimes + greater travel distance 6. Experience advancements (VIP, alcohol, bigger seats, IMAX, reserved seating) have helped stem decline, not stopped it 7. AYCE subscription still don't stop drop
1/ The Travis Scott x Fortnite event is commonly understood in comparison to prior Fortnite events, but instead it needs to be viewed as part of Fortnite’s testing and experimentation process/journey. It is technically less impressive than prior events, but creatively much bigger
2/ At its core, TS is an interactive cut-scene. Players can’t “affect” what’s happening, but unlike playback video, the experience is in engine and thus you have some control over your character (think of what you can/can’t do on a rollercoaster). Games have had this for decades.
3/ What’s new is that the experience isn't game-like, lacks game-like goals. Instead, it's social, about art. Marshmello was, too. But it was basically a programmed character/area within Fortnite's map. There was a stage + lightshow, but it was like a ride in a mall or side quest
The impact here cascades:
• 2021 will have 2021's films, and most of 2020s best
• Audiences don't really go to the movies more when there are more good movies
• Plus audiences will still be reluctant about movies in 2021
This means far fewer tickets and far more competition
In turn, movies that were plausibly viable in the box office, will not be
In turn, more movies will skip box office
In turn, more box office will have fewer films and more at-home substitutes
Some companies, e.g. Disney, have many other side gigs. As a result, pure D2C can take away or harm other avenues, while aiding others more (e.g. Disney+ helps Disney cut out travel agencies, toy retailers, etc.)
1/ Esports will not overtake physical sports anytime soon.
2/ Worth noting the biggest crossovers are those that replicate "sports" - especially those that are visually indistinguishable - and are popular because are are no "sports"
3/ COVID will have a profound impact on the ability for "esports" to access funding, brand partnerships, distribution deals, new fans
4/ But NBA 2K + NASCAR are nearly indistinguishable, required no viewer learning (and are easy anyway), and *substitutes*
5/ CS:GO is fairly simple to get, but still requires education, clearly non-real, and isn't super easy to follow. League of Legends is very hard to understand, very fantastical, very hard to appreciate
This is very important RE: timing because future of esports isn't simulacra
[NEW] Three essays on how COVID-19 will affect the "Film/Theatrical" biz, "Video Games/Digital Life" and "Pay-TV/OTT Video"
In sum: COVID-19 will exacerbate and accelerate all underlying trends and grow the gaps between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ matthewball.vc/covid-impacts