Category: Gaming

Casual Hamburger

Last month I visited the 2009 edition of Casual Connect in Hamburg, Germany. With our casual games report almost finished, I flew to Hamburg to meet the movers and shakers in Europe. The industry’s state of affairs amidst an economic downturn persuaded a wide selection of companies to make an act-de-presence and network with existing and new clients. So here's what's up.

  — read on

Maximum Hulkness

Screenshot of "Maximum Hulkness"

The cure for the common GTA clone. Heck, the Hulk puts GTA to shame.  One enjoys roaming one's habitat and stir some excitement. But it's difficult to outrun those pesky Liberty City law enforcers. And in all the Spiderman games, the city is really boring. But not no more. — read on

Digital Distribution & GameStop [updated 12/19/08]

After iTunes killed Tower Records, I'm wondering what the effect of digital distribution for games will be on brick & mortar game retailers. In particular, I'm curious to see whether GameStop will end up with a fat lip, because I'm skeptical as to what extent the games industry is impervious to the current economic downturn. A few weeks ago a few telecom giants worried that given these circumstances, people are likely to cancel their landlines, for example. In other words, people will be looking to get rid off those expenses that are, well, unnecessary. And so in deciding between a landline and cell phone, the latter likely wins. Similarly, I expect people to stop buying those $50 games.  This does not mean, of course, that people will stop playing games. That's nonsense. What I think it means is that people will first and foremost look for ways to spend less on video games. And I see two ways to do this. — read on

New York Game Companies (list of)

A few months ago, the Center for an Urban Future published a report on the challenges and opportunities of the NYC game industry. As the first of its kind, it takes a long hard look at NYC game scene. According to them, there are fifty-five companies in total, employing approximately 1,200 people. (To compare, Boston houses 75 and Maryland 60.) Anyway, as my graduation nears, I'm reviewing employment options. One of which is a job in the game industry. After the jump, there'll be a happy list of ninety-three game and game-related (i.e. music) companies in NY. For your convenience. — read on

Female Advergaming gets Funded. Blows.

It is an obvious proposition: women like casual games, and advertisers like women. Therefore, advertisers like casual games. And so, unsurprisingly, a host of female-targeting games are sprouting all over the Interwebs. Thanks to the technical convenience of flash-based games, every site, blog and forum now features some idiotic clickable nonsense. But, unlike some of the people who are investing money in this, I'm skeptical that some of these new 'portals' will successfully persuade any women. Example. — read on

Wordle Helping Out

Having reached the threshold of 1,250 coded .txt files, I'm getting excited about the imminent analysis. Particularly the host of wow-inducing applets strewn around teh Interwebs look promising.  — read on

DiGRA NY approved

It's done. Today I received the e-mail from Tanya Krzywink saying it's a go. I'm looking fwd to the first panel this fall. Official press release after the jump. — read on

Social Gaming Gets Funded [updated 10.28.08]

After virtual worlds and casual gaming, now emerges social gaming. Over the past couple of weeks a bunch of startups have come into some money by way of venture capital. So, what is this social gaming, who's building it, and who's funding it? The term 'social gaming' seems somewhat superfluous: a game is inherently social because it either involves more than one person to play, or a larger socio-cultural context informs its game mechanics. But, whatever. This is not a philosophical explication of a definition: social gaming refers to games played on social networking platforms, like Facebook. — read on


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About Waffler

Joost is fascinated by games and human behavior. His research explores video games as an entryway to contemporary media culture. After completing a Master's degree in Media studies in Amsterdam, he continued his research in New York. There he was project manager on a landmark investigation of three decades of ownership trends in the American media landscape, the results of which were part of a congressional testimony, a series of articles and a book. In 2010 he received his doctorate from Columbia University for his dissertation titled "Social Gaming and Communicative Exchange." Joost currently teaches at the NYU Game Center.

In addition to his academic pursuits, Joost is also founder and CEO of an online games research firm called SuperData. In early 2010 the company secured multi-year seed funding, and today employs five people. Clients include publishers such as Electronic Arts, SEGA, Wargaming.net and Pokémon as well as all the major Wall street firms.

Joost lives in the East Village with his wife Janelle and son Maximus.

Selected Presentations
  • Video Game Data & Trends, Ottawa International Game Conference, Canada, 2013.
  • Business Principles and Market Trends for Multi-Platform Games, Festival of Games, Amsterdam 2013.
  • 2013 Game Changers: How Will Devices Impact Your Future Growth? (keynote), Game Developer Conference, 2013.
  • Free-to-Play State of the Industry, Game Connection Paris, 2012.
  • Online Games Research: Getting Publishers to Play Nice, New Media, New Demand Measurement Methodologies, 2012 Columbia University.
  • The Great Unboxing: Major Trends in the Transition to Digital and Free-to-Play Gaming, DCM East, 2012.
  • The Rise of Free-to-Play, moderator and co-organizer, Re:Play - The Theory, Practice, and Business of Video Games, 2012, NYU.
  • Trading Card Games: Delivering the Digital Promise, PAX East, 2012.
  • From Asteroids to Zynga: Three Decades of Game Design and Revenue Models, GDC Online, 2011.
  • Video Game Industry, 2010 Fordham University, 2010.
  • Social Media and TV, LATVfest, 2010 Los Angeles.
  • Top 5 Trends in Gaming, NY Games Conference, New York, 2009.
  • Kids, Tweens & Teens, State of Play IV, New York Law School, New York, 2009.
  • Game Theory, Play Money, Columbia Business School, New York, 2008. (event organizer)
  • Media Economics: The Question of Ownership, Hunter College, New York, 2008.
  • On Game Mod Communities, 106th Annual Meeting of American Anthropological Association, Washington, DC, 2007.
  • Game Mods & Post-Industrial Play, CITI Visiting Scholar’s Brown Bag Lunch Seminar Series, Columbia Business School, New York, October 2007.
  • The Video Game Vocabulary and the Production of Meaning, MiT5: Creativity, Ownership and Collaboration in the Digital Age, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, April 2007. (abstract)
  • Cities, Games and Media: Playing with and in the Urban Setting, Time|Space Dynamics in Urban Settings, Technishen Universität, Berlin, May 2007.
  • The Aesthetic Vocabulary of Video Games, Seventh Annual Convention of the Media Ecology Association, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, November 2006.
  • Haussmann’s Media Environment (revised), Sixth Annual Convention of the Media Ecology Association, Fordham University, New York, May 2005.
  • Media Technology & Society: Video Game Theory, Dissertation outline, Columbia University, New York, April 2005.
  • Good Day New York, Fox Television, aired August 20th, debate with Attorney Sanford Rubenstein on videogame violence, August 2004.
Contact: joost at waffler dot org

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