I was thinking about odd game library trends, because of a text ferricide sent me with a bunch of orange-logo-having SNES games lined up in a row (which I’m sure he’ll share).
There are odd trends that pop up in game libraries that get large enough, and it’s hard to know if it’s intentional (unlikely?), the result of marketing trends (likely-ish?) or totally random. I’m not talking about popular genres or anything, more like visual, naming, or packaging trends.
For example, look at the genesis library. There’s a huge number of titles that start with S. I have, let’s see, about 210 genesis and mega drive titles here. Of those, 38 start with the letter S! It’s really striking when they’re all laid out next to each other. That’s 18% of my personal library just on one letter. Check it out:
I could see a scenario where people are naming their games thinking, well… sega… sonic… let’s name our game with an S? And sega did plenty of S games themselves, which didn’t hurt. To that end you’d expect more V (virtua/virtual) titles on the saturn, but it’s not nearly as disproportionate there.
Then look at the PC Engine. There’s an unusual weighting of titles toward the absolute base of the alphabet. Most libraries (saturn aside) you get to the letter U and you’re basically done, minus a few stragglers. On the pc engine you’ve got valis (series), veigues, vasteel (series), vigilante, violent soldier, Ys (series), yawara (series), xak (series), xzr (series), zero-4 (series), even a god darned zero wing port. Some heavy hitters down there!
My total armchair guess is based on my time in music retail, when I worked at Rasputin (a small bay area music/video store chain that some of you probably know of). The buyers would often talk about how bands would try to get closer to the start of the section, like Rock, A, because browsing fatigue would set in once you get to M or whatever. With game stores it was more like what’s on the endcap, less about browsing, but then there’s the Sega S scenario…
Anyway with the PC Engine, V is V and X are at the start of the alphabet, since V is written with う and X with え. So it’s only at the bottom of our particular alphabet.
Uh, anyway! Any curious trends you’ve noticed? I feel like there’s a big PS2 trend I can’t put my finger on.