Xbox and Starfield have proven single-player games are the most important – Reader’s Feature

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Starfield screenshot
Starfield – a single-player epic (Picture: Bethesda)

A reader is pleased to see that the Xbox Games Showcase was dominated by single-player games and not multiplayer titles.

I wasn’t even going to watch the Xbox Games Showcase last Sunday but I tuned in anyway and I was very surprised to find that it was… good? There wasn’t much gameplay footage, but I was immediately interested in Fable, Clockwork Revolution, Avowed, Star Wars Outlaws, and Starfield, amongst others.

But then I realised why they were such strange games to see from Xbox. Not only do they look good but they’re all strictly single-player (well, I’m not sure about Fable exactly, but that was the impression I got). I’m pretty sure Microsoft used to be in the EA camp when it came to single-player games being on the way out but now I see that they have learnt otherwise, which I am very glad of.

In fact, the whole industry seems to be learning this truth at the moment, as they realise that people haven’t got space in their lives to be proficient at dozens of different multiplayer games. But they will quite happily play a single-player game from beginning to end and then move onto the next.

You would have thought that basic logic would have been obvious to all, and we wouldn’t have had to go through that whole phase where everyone was convinced they could make the next big battle royale, but at least we’re over that now and out the other side.

It was obvious they only wanted the microtransactions that come with multiplayer games, but I think there was also the idea that online games are better at getting to spread word on social media – as if gamers don’t talk about single-player games as well.

The top 1% of multiplayer games might make money but getting in that 1% is near impossible now that there’s so many well-established ones, so you’re really just wasting money even trying.

Especially with some of the low budget stuff Ubisoft has been putting out lately, and even Sony with Destruction AllStars and this The Last Of Us spin-off that was apparently so bad Bungie said to can it.

All of this pleases me. I have little to no interest in multiplayer and this recent rise in the importance of single-player games is music to my ears.

To have something like Zelda: Tears Of The Kingdom and Starfield out in the same year is fantastic and it’s only a shame Sony hasn’t got a single-player game of similar quality and scale, although I suppose Spider-Man 2 is at least in the right area.

It’s funny, really, that just as Microsoft relearns the importance of single-player, Sony seems to be forgetting. Nobody but them seems interested in all these live service games and if they’re being created at the expense of more single-player games then it really is too bad.

But maybe, like Microsoft, they’ll realise the error of their ways and realise that multiplayer is a far riskier bet for a new game then a good solid single-player adventure.

By reader Zoner

The reader’s feature does not necessarily represent the views of GameCentral or Metro.

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