No summer releases mean video game tournaments

No summer releases mean video game tournaments


Nathan Mendelowitz

Summer is the time of the year when most gamers are finally done with school and have time to play plenty of video games. So it makes sense game developers would keep its best games ready to come out during this time of the year.

Unfortunately, this time of the year is known as the summer drought for video games because no major titles are released. Instead of blockbuster games, summer is littered with meager titles barely worth mentioning.

However, this isn’t all bad. What this does is give gamers time to enjoy the major titles released in the spring. Plenty of tournaments are throughout the summer so in reality, summer should be known as catch-up season.

It’s easy to think game developers would follow what movie companies do and release high profile and high action films for the summer.

Instead, game developers release high profile games in the spring and winter. Games like “Mass Effect 3,” “Street Fighter X Tekken” and “Diablo 3” were all released during the spring.

People often question why game developers do this when free time becomes more available.

The simple answer is game developers usually hold the big games for winter because it’s holiday season. It’s easier to sell a product when most of them are being bought for holiday gifts.

The complex answer is game developers know summer is going to be full of different kinds of distractions like movies, summer sports and vacations. So releasing great games during the spring is easier for people to buy and then enjoy in the summer.

Buying the game in spring and playing sporadically gives time to get a feel for the game and then fully enjoy the game when summer hits. There are endless amounts of time for a player to fully immerse in a game during the summer, and this is what game developers want.

Summer is also when tournament season begins for video games.

Major League Gaming begins its tournament rounds in late spring-early summer, which culminates with a final tournament at the end of summer.

Most, if not all the competitors in MLG are teenagers still in school. Even though they aren’t playing newly released games, MLG fills the summer drought with intense competitive gaming.

Best of all, all MLG tournaments are available to watch online. So when gamers are taking a break from their gaming, they can watch the tournaments and play along with their friends.

The fighting game community also has many of its high profile tournaments in the summer. Playing “Street Fighter X Tekken,” “Super Street Fighter 4: Arcade Edition” and “Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3,” small tournaments are played throughout the country leading up to Evolution 2012, which is the biggest fighting game tournament.

What makes the fighting game community tournaments different and better is there are plenty of opportunities for anyone to participate. Many online streams of the matches have viewer commentary and fans are encouraged to participate in local tournaments.

With tournaments and games to catch up on, there is no need for big budget games to be released during the summer. Gamers have found other avenues to follow and turn the summer drought into something fun.

Nathan Mendelowitz can be reached at [email protected]