I couldn't help but think about how much gaming has changed today. My nephews are up visiting with some other family for a couple of weeks. They each brought a DS and seem to play them just fine. With the exception of when they wanted to try my Guitar Hero on the DS! But then they started looking at al my PS3 360 and wii games. They have a wii at home so they pretty much get the basics of using it.
But when they saw the great games on the PS3 and 360 they instantly wanted to play. It was then that I realized just how much more difficult it is for them to pick up and play. First of all you have fragile discs that have to be handled way more carefully than the cartridges of the past that we once were familiar with. Then you have the sometimes complex operating system of the console. For a 6 -7 year old kid it can actually be a bit odd to figure out how to get the game going once you are booted up if auto play is disabled!
Then once the game is finally up and running the menu structure and asking about saves and all the other prompts can confuse them even more. More times than not I have to get them started to prevent them from becoming lost in the menus. Why is the industry trying to dumb down gameplay so much?! Getting casual players involved needs alot more than some dumbed down game play! Make the games easier to get started! There are tons of places the industry can look to improve casual gamer experiences!
What is your take? Remember how easy it was for us? Pull a cart off the shelf and give it a good blow and jam it in! Then select one or two players from the menu screen!