Casual vs. Hardcore…not so simple?

Like Brandi, while reading the chapter from Casual Revolution, I found myself disagreeing with the methods in which casual and hardcore games were compared and analyzed. The descriptive terms used to wholly distinguish casual games from hardcore games were almost dismissive of casual games, delegating them to a class of gamers who are much less involved with the games they are playing.

As I mentioned in class, I believe one of the primary examples of this discrepancy can be seen with rhythm games such as Guitar Hero and Rock Band. While these games were created to also be accessible to those not adept at playing, they also have significant elements that I would consider ‘hardcore,’ where a user must hone their technique to advance to a higher skill level.

When I first began playing Rock Band, I could barely pass on the Medium skill setting, however with practice, I was eventually able to work my way up to consistently scoring highly on Expert level songs. Likewise, there are many individuals I know who would almost be offended if Rock Band / Guitar Hero were to be lumped into the casual gaming category, simply based on their level of time commitment and advanced skill level. In addition, while many ‘casual gamers’ may play in short spurts, I have known a great number of people who can play online flash or card games for hours on end. These types of people certainly blur the line between casual and hardcore gamer, and it is for this reason I believe the chapter to not accurately describe the subtle difference between the two main types of games and gamers.