Happy New Year's everybody! A late entry here, I just wanted to squeeze some last-minute 2010 mobile gaming predictions in here before the clock hits midnight.
(Copied from our thread over on the TouchArcade forums)-Activision and EA step up their stakes in the mobile arena, in a BIG way.
-a MASSIVE oversaturated market that makes 2009 look like it was a deserted wasteland by comparison. With Flash being ported to the iPhone, expect to see 10X as many releases of middle-ground indie product.
-a clear winner in the "social gamespace" war (plus+, OF, Agon, etc). My expectation is going with OF, but it is honestly pretty early to tell. Someone has to spend some serious money and they could dominate it. I wouldn't be surprised to see one of the Big Guys wait to see who is the clear leader, and then outright buy them (-ahem- Activision or EA)
-MMO on iPhone - it's been tried before, I think someone will step this up to the next level. It still won't hit big, but it will sow some pretty impressive seeds.
-Farmville-style game on the iPhone - this social PC game is the most popular in the world right now. You can bet we will see a serious effort on the iPhone as well, I'd imagine by no later than middle of summer.
-Sony Ericcson, M$ Zune will still be scrapping for leftovers. Sorry guys. You snoozed!
-E3 will actually care about the iPhone this time, in a BIG way. It was not even represented at all last year - 2010 will be extremely different.
-Apple is working on some kind of console. They must be! I'm not expecting that it will definitely ever show up, but I know they must be into some serious R&D in their dark cobwebby corners.
-Google, Droid, etc - won't get their shit together fast enough in 2010. They are still trying to position themselves as "trendy alternative" to Apple Haters, but their network is still nowhere near as pervasive. Just outright copy iTunes and make it super-accessible and people will slowly come - in the meantime, it's just going to be a big mess. they don't care, they are still making money - but they aren't going to unseat Apple.
-Microsoft is juggling so much right now but you can bet they are extremely butthurt by missing out on this party in a big way. Unlike Sony, they are very capably forward-looking - I expect them to announce something big that will put them back on the map (it ain't gonna catch with Zune HD, as stated earlier). Can you say "MicroPhone?"
-Nintendo will continue "operating rogue" doing things their own way and only that way. The DS will start to get pretty stale this year, as their competitor's games will be getting more and more quality. Their lack of any decent online experience will start looking amateur. DS and Wii will still have a good year, but unless they make some really bold moves.. they are going to mothball once again. Too much milking of old tech - all the casual gamers they "created" are going to be woo'd by all the competition. Note, I am not trying to diss Nintendo, I am a fan..
-A successor to iPhone will be talked about in hushed tones. But it's gonna rest on it's laurels this year.
-Headcase Games' new iPhone puzzler "180" will top many people's "Top Ten Games of 2010" - just you wait! The buzz should start in mid-to-late February. Just remember you knew us way back when...
Also, time for some shout-outs to our friends! We made lots of great connections in real-life and online in 2009, the first year that we've been doing this. Big thanks to lots of Twitter buddies - java_king, Grizdakillr, magisterrex, edbertin, RustySabre, mr_elmore, JeppeKM, shimmer418, RetroGames, dotarray, UberDorkGirlie, TheSocialGamer, UnionMade, iPhone_Queen, weclock, joshdcoyne, iphonedevnews, DeltaDreamer, SaintBastard, AnjelusX, TanukiSuit, JasonArnopp, Nobuooo (let's get back to the Sushi Joint!), frederictessier, 2DX, rappsodystudios, GavinBowman, AshMcConnell, chrismwaite, gogukaizer, dibely, jbr05ki, my buddy Asau at Neversoft, aileenv at Tecmo, Bryagh at Obsidian, GeoffHathaway, OTGGamer, 8bitJay, NerdBalloon, pierrepradal, joshgeeksix, Knusper2000, the multi-talented and generous tjslater, kitkatbrown, mattarevalo, Joylia, shoob, Guilhes, UrbanTogs, GBGames, kittychix, PeterSkerritt, rpninteractive, mikejstein, johnemersons, and all the other twitter buddies and re-tweeters who have helped us out these past months - thanks for spreading the word!
Shout-outs also to StarSlay3r for helping with promo + dev stuff, MrWalrus from Race2theMoon, Larry and the guys at GoPlay Games, Jeff, Skillz, and Todd at Last Legion, the awesomely-talented Pauline Laciste for helping out with our soundtrack, Ben for putting up with me, Cat at N4G, all of our dedicated beta-test staff and loyal blogreaders (that's YOU!) my folks of course, our very patient girlfriends, and.. uh.. that's it. Have a great 2010!
(apologies to those I missed.. it's late and I need to pick up a pizza!)