Friday, June 5, 2009

The State of the Gaming Industry

Slate has an article on this year's E3 conference and the state of the gaming industry.

"To the extent that games provide consumers with engaging interactive entertainment for $60—sometimes 100 hours' worth as in the post-apocalyptic Fallout 3—it's an industry that deserves to fly high in the recession. But the game industry has fired nearly 12 percent of its work force since last July (8,450 folks), according to Wanda Meloni, an analyst at M2. There may be more to come, too.

Beyond closing 13 game-development studios, video game publishers are tightening their belts while, at the same time, desperately trying to show how extravagant they can be by spending millions on parties with famous bands, fancy convention booths, and movie-award-like press conferences at E3, the lavish yearly games convention in Los Angeles that's more like a boisterous, barker-filled state fair midway than a business gathering."

That layoff percentage above implies that the gaming business recently employed over 70,000 people. Not all of those would be artists, but has the gaming industry surpassed features and TV series as the largest employer of animation artists?

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