I'd hate to be one of those people who refuses to get with the times, fighting progress and trying to force the things I've become accustomed to on everyone. But there is one place I have been accused of this, and where this accusation againt peeps in my position is accepted. That place is multiplayer gaming.
You see, I'm not really into multiplayer that much. I don't play a lot of multiplayer games, I don't discuss a lot of them on this blog, and I don't enjoy games with watered down singleplayer campaigns. This really should not be a problem. After all, multiplayer gaming is not the next evolutionary step from singleplayer. It is something fundamentally different.
Look at casual games like Angry Birds, a singleplayer game that has amazing sales figures. it has gone on to have an influence on our generation's culture, possessing almost universal appeal. This and other casual games are clear evidence of the fact that singleplayer games still have a place, power, and artistic capacity.
The idea that multiplayer is the direction games need to take has its roots in two places. First, publishers don't understand game design. They understand sales figures. So even when multiplayer doesn't fit a game they influence the development of, they reason that "a game made money that had thing X in it, so lets put thing X in all of our games so that they make money." These publishers are stuck with a simple cause-effect fallacy that cuts the number of successful titles down and hurts the artistic integrity of the medium by stagnating its diversity.
Second, most hardcore gamers seem to love them some multiplayer. N00b p'wning, fun with the bros, l33t skill building, and a game you can play regularly and learn like a musical instrument or martial art are all attractive to them. I do not find these attractions in multiplayer games. I prefer the complete, beginning to end, personal, and free from human interaction experience that only a singleplayer game can provide. However, it would seem that I am in the very small minority as one able to fight the urge present in every human to assert that their preferred style or genre of a particular art medium is the best.
If we as an industrial medium would stop focusing on trying to create games based on catering to only a single audience and ripping off other titles, there would be better financial profit and interesting art pieces over time.