Don’t you think that lately we are not just living in a dystopia, but have plunged even deeper? Post-dystopia, dystopia 2.0? Last year, in 2020, we faced the coronavirus pandemic, which changed the lives of hundreds of millions of people, and there is talk among experts that such situations will occur much more often, including due to biological terrorism. Some conspiracy theories that superbillionaires liked to keep us home and new viruses are being developed in secret laboratories to put 80% of the population in permanent quarantine.
Parallel to this, a complete change in content consumption is taking place, and coffins are already being hammered into the theater industry. Yes, in the cinema the experience is more powerful and the sound is better, but at home it is more comfortable, no one eats popcorn with a shovel behind, and the development of technology will provide us with high-quality picture and sound as soon as there is a request for it. Apart from Apple, good headphones are already quite cheap, and soundbars and other acoustics are more profitable in the long run. Not to mention the fact that many are content with watching movies and shows on their smartphones without really complaining.
The gaming industry found itself in a strange position in late 2020 and early 2021. At first everything was cool – the launch of new consoles, along with a bunch of blockbusters. True, Watch Dogs quickly merged something, but that’s another story. In general, November and December were great months for game fans. And then Cyberpunk 2077 came, with a broken arm and a bandaged torso. He was pushed off the HYIP train on the move! Against the same background, a series of hyphenations. Ubisoft generally scattered its games in such a way that you feel like John Travolta in Pulp Fiction.
As a result, it’s March, you look at the release schedule for the first months and an image of an empty town somewhere in the Wild West forms in your head. Sunset, the wind blows and carries with it the rolling stones. Classical music and whistling.
Welcome – this is what the effects of the pandemic in the gaming industry look like. And also fears of falling under the righteous anger of gamers after Cyberpunk. CD Projekt RED was rescued by divine marketing and a long wait, sales turned out to be multimillion-dollar. But such a trick won’t work anytime soon, especially since Cyberpunk 2077 has yet to return to the PS Store. So the studio was also hacked in February, as a result of which a major patch will not be available until the end of March, which dropped the game’s rating on Steam to 68% of positive reviews.
However, all of this pales against the background of what has happened with regard to speculation. Armed with connections, bots and other tools, entire groups of resellers have been terrorizing gamers for months who want to buy a PS5 or RTX 3070. Here it is, the true face of post-dystopia – people have just adapted to new conditions, as now we have to look for methods of dealing with “locusts” devouring all the supplies in order to fill the cheeks and in a matter of days to expose the good with a mark-up of 50% of the original price. And these same speculators complain that they have a bad reputation, and after all they do “nothing bad”. Although now even analysts have come to the opinion that the shortage of consoles and hardware is artificially created by speculators who earn literally tens of millions of dollars on resale.
In the meantime, retailers are trying to take action, but they are simply not technically prepared for such a reality. And some are rumored to be in cahoots with speculators. About whom we are talking, most likely have already heard.
Perhaps this is the best episode of Black Mirror, because each of us is the hero of this show.
Ok, the situation is clear. But not yet lament. What to do?
Unfortunately, there is little that the average person can do in this environment. If you are good at programming, you can write your own parser and bot that will find and buy you a console or video card at an adequate price. Otherwise, you need to be patient and not be led by speculators. Over time, supplies will stabilize, and the problem will disappear on its own.
We are also unable to speed up the release of games. Moreover, the developers themselves understand their responsibility. But in terms of blockbusters, large fish will not drop in very often. Evil Genius 2 in March, Outriders and Humankind in April, Resident Evil Village and Deathloop in May. But how exciting they will be, we will still experience it on our own skin.
How do you live in such a strange reality? I can’t even believe that there was once a glorious year 2019.