Over at The Escapist, there’s an interesting article by Troy Goodfellow on press coverage of games. Especially “games to come”.

His main point is that game journalism is all over “the upcoming product”, with previews, screenshots, trailers, and whatnot. When the game does arrive, there’s a burst of publicity, then everyone goes looking for “the next game”.

He isn’t the only one who’s noticed that. A friend of mine (who gets his gaming news mainly from mags) mentioned that to me more than once. The pages are filled with previews of upcoming games. Once the game is out, they don’t bother with it anymore.

Troy considers most game journalism as a hype machine for the game companies, and I think he’s right. The emphasis is definitely on “what’s ahead” everywhere I look.

Each day, when I make my usual rounds, there are previews of one kind or another all over the place. This trailer, those screenshots, that developer interview – all designed to rev up gamers to buy the product.

But shortly after a game releases, and the reviews are up, there’s not much talk about it. Everyone’s already looking ahead to “the next game”. Almost the only thing you see is a notice that “patch N.N has been released for game X”.

Of course, within the individual community, there’s usually plenty of discussion. But that’s a small piece of the picture. Outside of that little island of fans, the game hardly seems to exist. At least insofar as most game journalists are concerned.

Then again, maybe they’re just sick of the game that they’ve been “covering” for the last year or two years. I suppose that could happen. In any case, read the article and see what you think.

Can’t Wait Till Tomorrow on The Escapist