After looking at the list of the games coming with the Windows 8 preview, there seems to be a clear trajectory that ‘casual gaming’ will be taking with Windows 8 and Xbox Live combined together.
Casual Games To Take Over On Windows 8
Die-hard gamers might disagree but we are entering the age of the casual gamer. But first — what’s a casual game? Well, games like Angry Birds and Toy Soldier, which will be available during the Windows 8 preview, are casual games. These are easily playable and are meant to while away little pockets of time and not for engaging with a high amount of focus and dedication like the ‘serious games’ such as Halo, Heavy Rain, Uncharted, etc. And anyone playing these casual games is a casual gamer.
Casual games used to be scoffed at by the so-called ‘real gamers’. Now, with the advent of better distribution systems and better platforms such as the iOS (iPhone, iPod Touch and the iPad) and Android, casual games are more popular than ever. Right now, we can comfortably say that more people have played Angry Birds than all the people who have played the cult multi-player gaming title ‘CounterStrike’. That’s because it’s not only us, our mothers and even our grandmothers are playing Angry Birds. And that’s saying something for a game whose sole objective is to hurl bird heads at pig heads hidden inside loosely made structures that must be toppled through simple physics. Not strategy, no in depth storyline or complicated game mechanics; just simple and addictive fun. It’s been a winning formula since the ancient times actually.
Windows 8 is going to bring that opportunity once again to casual gamers. And since it is going to be larger in its user base than any other similar platform (including Android), it is likely to singlehandedly turn the tide towards casual gaming. As you know already, Xbox Live will be integrated with Windows 8. This will allow gamers to play games on any Windows 8 device and keep their scores and progress synced across all devices they own. The ease of it all might actually mean dwindling interest in buying the actual Xbox console. As a regular user, playing big-ticket games is not usually on the priority list. Instead, being able to consume Xbox Live entertainment content and casual games on the PC, phone and tablet should sufficiently replace the need for the actual console hardware.