Monday, September 22, 2008

Will the economic turmoil translate into game industry stress?

As I write this the government is engaged in negotiations over unprecedented measures t stave off a feared economic collapse.

Should they succeed, it seems likely that we're in for a significant downturn. This implies less disposable income, although it's possible that people will be redirecting their entertainment dollars from more expensive fun to boardgaming, which provides a very good value for the buck.

There's a good chance that the structural problems are too severe foe the government to fix at this late stage, however, and we could be in for a full-blown Depression with wide-spread business failures, personal suffering and even homelessness and joblessness on a large scale.

Under those kinds of conditions it's hard to imagine that the game industry will come through unscathed. People may stay home and play more, but they may not buy much. Retail forecasters are predicting a "weak" shopping season and that can't be good news for game makers.


  1. It certainly won't effect my game buying. I'm gearing up for a good sized purchase in a month or two here.

  2. Uh, I doubt this is going to a sequel to 1929.

  3. Maybe, although I have more on my other blog about the developing crisis.

    It wouldn't have to be GD ver. 2.0 to have a big impact on game makers, though.

  4. True, but I would argue that the cultural acceptance and prevalence of board gaming has far more impact than the economy on this industry. Board games just aren't that expensive, really, compared to things like RVs, televisions, or even golf.

    I'd be curious to see statistics on the boardgaming industry on a whole over the past couple decades to see if it really is on the rise as many claim.

  5. Because the boardgame inudstry is so small it's hard to get reliable statistics. I'm not awre of any impartial source for overall industry metrics.

    There are some data available for the toy industry as a whole, but I don't think that tells us much about how boardgaming is doing.