An oral history of the video games business

My first job was writing about computer games in the late 1990s. Therefore the podcast Gamecraft by Mitch Lasky and Blake Robbins is enjoyable listening. It is a deep-dive into the games industry starting in the early 1990s with shareware and iD Software. I’m only a bit into the first episode, but am already looking forward to all eight episodes.

Games been culturally important for a long time, but how three different business models (free-to-play and “pay $60 upfront” and “pay $12 per month”) can all exist and be successful is worth learning from (especially if you’re in a different business). Also how the different models have allowed the industry to grow significantly and use the sheer size of the smartphone platforms to go beyond the PC and the console market (the PS5 has “only” sold 30 million units since its release in November 2020, while Apple sells more than 200 million iPhones per year).

Author: Henrik Torstensson

Partner at Alliance VC. Investing in Nordic early-stage tech startups.

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