Friday, June 10, 2005

PC Games at EB

We went to the mall tonight and I got a chance to see first-hand why PC games need to move to digital distribution as quickly as possible. I stopped in at the Electronics Boutique and tried to find the PC games.

It took a while.

When I finally found them, in the far back corner of the store, I could not believe how small the section was. I decided to walk off some measurements and calculate how much of the shelf space was devoted to PC games.

In this particular EB, there is roughly 702 square feet of shelf space (two 27' x 9' sections and two 12' x 9' sections). Of that, PC games take up '9 x'9. That's 11.5%, and it's the worst 11.5% of the store.

Some stores give more space to PC gaming, but to the best of my knowledge, absolutely no one in the U.S. gives more space to PC gaming now than they did three years ago. For many stores, PC games are either gone or take up 1/4 the space that they used to.

I'm going to take a trip to Wal-Mart this weekend and check out how much space they give to PC games for a mass-market retailer comparison. Maybe Eli 3.10 would like to "assist" that study.

I also had a chance tonight to see just how deeply Fate has burned into my brain. I've written about this before, but great games leave a kind of afterimage on your brain, so that when you see objects in the real world you're reminded of the game world. Gloria had on a silver pendant tonight, and while we were waiting for dinner I looked at it and immediately thought of the pendants you can wear in Fate to improve your attributes. Many of them have funny names, like "Nailjuggler's Cheetah's Jeweled Pendant of Silver," and so I wondered what kind of dexterity and attack bonus boost she was getting.

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