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What are these 'gamers' you speak of?

by Paul Jay, CBCNews.ca.

Christmas is traditionally a slow news time, and here at the CBC we feel it too as we try to report on the stories we think Canadians want to know about in the tech and science fields. Having said all that, consider this story from the Associated Press filed today, entitled 'Big video game fans prove crucial to the industry.'

Here's the lead:

They stand in line outside stores waiting for midnight launches of new video games. When they get home after a long day, they plop down in front of the TV not to sit back and watch, but to play. They're known as "core gamers."

The story then goes onto explain that video games are different from TV. As Arizona State University student Wyatt Du Frane explains, " A movie is only a couple of hours. A video game is more like a book or a TV series, where you can kind of continue the story."

Now, we know people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. But does anyone else reading this feel like they just stepped into a time warp of, say, 1994, back in the days when Doom was king of the first-person shooters?

Eventually, the story gets to the point - which is that despite making inroads with casual gamers through titles like Guitar Hero and Wii Play, game makers are heavily reliant on hard-core gamers to get them through tough economic times.

And in that sense, things are different: in 1994, the recession was almost over here in Canada, while today it appears to be just getting started.

UDATE: Hi folks - thanks for your comments below. Up until recently, gaming hasn't been an editorial focus for CBC.ca but that is changing. A little while ago, we began running a monthly gaming column anchored on the Arts page but also on Tech/Science and we regularly publish features, such as our recent look at the history of video games.

Given that a number of staffers here are avid gamers, we'd love to do as much on gaming as time permits. If you'd like to see more, please keep letting us know so we can help build a case for expanding our coverage. Thanks again for reading!

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