Greg Kasavian: I think games are generally as good as they've ever been. There is much more clutter than there's ever been before, so finding the stuff you like may be more difficult than it used to be. But never before have players been able to get their hands on so many high-quality games for so little money, at least without resorting to software piracy (and even that is arguably easier than it used to be). Whether you're downloading hundreds of hours' worth of amazing games through some dirt-cheap Steam sale, or playing some unique, provocative, free Flash game on a portal like Newgrounds or Kongregate, or getting a great deal on a retail game two weeks after its release because it "only" sold like a million copies, it's a good time to be a bargain-minded game player. Games don't all cost more to make now. While retail AAA game development costs are spiraling out of control and making that market a bad idea for all but the biggest blockbuster titles, smaller digitally-distributed games are going through a renaissance of sorts. In some ways I would have expected games to have come farther by now, but on the whole I think there's never been a bad time to be a game player for going on 25 years or more.

Roman Ribaric: Less cost = less boring = more gameplay = less cut-sequences = more fun. More cost = more boring = less gameplay = more cut-sequences = less fun.

Derek Paxton: There are great games out there. But just because we have the computers, tools and budget to model an entire city, doesn't mean that it improves the game. Just because movie studios have access to amazing CGI doesn't mean that the movies are better than they were 10 years ago.

Some limitations are gone now, we can make games that we couldn't make 10 years ago. That allows us to explore new areas. But merely pushing those boundaries doesn't make a game great.

Games are generally better because when the new tools are used in great ways we get great games. But when they are used poorly, even a 20 million dollar bad game is still a bad game.

Jon Shafer: I think with a lot more variety available, you could definitely make the argument that gaming as a whole is more "fun." Are individual games more fun though? It's a harder case to make. Another side to the constant push for bigger and better technology is that gameplay hasn't seen the same investment. Hopefully sometime soon the aesthetic fidelity of games will peak and amazing gameplay becomes the agreed-upon element which differentiates the successes from the failures.

Robert Ludwick: About the same. The core fun of video games remains mostly unchanged, even though it takes longer to play them now. Retro games had very high replayability and had to focus on fun. Modern games can scale back on gameplay thanks to all of the added features, which evens things out.

Carl Dungca: I'm going to say games are more fun. Why? In large, they are more accessible, less obtuse/frustrating, and there are more people playing them. In other words, more people are having fun. Though there will always be the vocal minority that still yearns for the challenge of an intricate PC-style RPG or simulator or the punishing "NES-hard" masochism, that sort of gameplay is a turn-off for the larger audience. Just look at how popular the simplified Street Fighter IV is compared to the hyper-complex systems of the niche-ified fighting genre.

Bobby Stein: It's easy to look at the past through rose-colored glasses and say, "Games were so much better 10 years ago because of X," but when you look at the type of experiences that are possible in modern games and the value you get out of a $50 or $60 game I think we've got it better nowadays. The best part about game development in the digital distribution age is that, if a particular segment of the market isn't getting enough attention, savvy indie devs can create something with off-the-shelf tools to fill that market need. If you can improve your existing product to continue to provide value to your audience, it's easier now than ever before.

What is the single biggest triumph of the game industry from the past 5 years?

Roberto Guedes: Give space to the indie developers. There is too much creativity to be explored, and what is always admirable to me is the sense of collaboration in the game industry. Developers want to play games outside of what we develop, because we are gamers too, and want to study other titles. And indie games are there to do not only this, but create more variety in the industry.

Ian Cummings: The triumph of the game industry has to be the emergence of new platforms and experiences which means turning millions of non-gamers into gamers. Whether it be the Wii or Kinect or the App Store or Facebook, these new platforms have gotten so many more people interested in gaming that never would have happened with just another Xbox 720 or PS4. Now can the right folks in the industry recognize this instead of turning their nose up at it, and turn these casual $.99 or freemium game players into hardcore / HD gamers? That's the burning question I have, and as an industry employee I sure hope the answer is yes.

Roman Ribaric: Jointly, Valve's Steam and Apple's iPhone. Both have resurrected indies and garage game developers, which were almost extinct.

Jon Shafer: I hinted at it above, but I think that the wide variety of gaming experiences that are now available is the crowning achievement. PC and console gaming has been a staple for some time, but now we're seeing platforms like Facebook and the Wii bringing in new audiences, a handheld has become the best-selling gaming console in history, gaming on phones has earned a great deal of mindshare and respect, the iPad market is taking off - and more. The more people who are playing games the more variety and more innovation you'll see. Broadening the market is good both financially and creatively.

Robert Ludwick: Bringing online gaming to the masses. The ability to socially play games via the Internet is huge. It broadens the reach of the industry.

Mike Wilson: Definitely all the new digital distribution channels opening up for a renaissance in indie development. There's never been a better time to be an indie or a gamer as far as breaking down barriers and variety to choose from, and it came just in the nick of time, as the industry was grinding to a big, bloated, creative halt. Funny how that happens.

Bobby Stein: Online connectivity has been a staple of PC gaming for years, but it's evolved so much over time. More developers are moving away from the "fire and forget" mentality of launching a product and then moving on. We're in the business of building communities and supporting our customers with additional content now. Games can be viewed as an entertainment service of sorts, so we have to be thoughtful and creative in how we nurture development, all in service of our audience.

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