A decade of gaming innovations

Over at Play Think Learn Nicola Whitton has described a good set of 5 major innovations in gamin we have seen this past decade. I was going to do a retrospective post, but Nicola’s one pretty much covers it so check it out.
Interaction, Casual, Mobile/AR,ARG and MMORPG growth feature.
I could add one that surprises some people. The move away from the pursuit of more and more “realistic” graphics at all costs.
Many people who are new to games or are suddenly taking note will start with the assumption that we need more and more photo realism and that if its not high end visuals its not a game. In part this is because the non gamers can relate to photo realism as being somewhat more understandable. There is of course room and need for these highly “real” visual games, Gran Turismo, Forza 2, Assassins Creed 2 etc. However the sideswipe the Wii made and the rise of the casual puzzle game (as you point out) thrive on not being highly rendered. For gamers The Legend Of Zelda:Wind Waker going cell shaded could be said to have tipped this trend (around 2002). So great gameplay and engagement through simpler visuals with Crayon, Toribash, Loco Roco etc has been a feature of games evolution. Then of course there are the hybrids such as the fantastic Little Big Planet whose design ethos was to look like real things but handmade from craft material and junk.
epredator little big planet style
Of course Play,Think Learn had already written about this with Just My Imagination but I thought it should be in the list of the decade too 🙂

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