Are Single-Player Games Doomed?

Nioh, NieR: Automata, Rise of the Tomb Raider and Uncharted 4 beg to differ.

Following the recent closure of Visceral Games, the future of its upcoming single-player Star Wars game was called into question. Heavy doubts then arose over EA’s supposed shift away from single-player experiences in general.

The push towards multiplayer is clearly evident in titles like Anthem and A Way Out. Of course, we still have Star Wars Battlefront II holding down the fort, but according to Polygon, sales figures from many recent AAA single-player games fell short of expectations. By nature, single-player games are usually more linear, and tend to possess lower replay value when compared with something like Destiny 2, which is chock full of public events and side-quests in addition to online matchmaking and the allure of fresh, constantly changing multiplayer battles.

For many multiplayer games (as well as some single-player outings like For Honor), their non-linear, socially focused design cultivates fertile ground for the implementation of microtransactions, which naturally assist with driving sales upward. Visceral’s termination sparked further debate on NeoGAF, where users noted the more lucrative nature of MMO leaning games, and the rising development costs faced by AAA studios in meeting consumer demand for bigger and better IPs.

What are your thoughts on the future of single-player games? Has their reign finally come to an end? Let us know in the comments.