Nioh’s Demo Is Good For Us All
Team Ninja’s Nioh is full of fresh ideas and nice concepts. After spending a good 2 hours playing the demo, I was impressed. The one thing that stood out was the fact that it was a demo. It’s so rare to see demos released free of charge, which is quite sad. I can’t recall the last time I had been able to truly try a game in such a manner. The modern method of pre-order ‘betas’, almost asking the player to pay-to-try, has never sat well with me.
The fact I could play a fairly big chunk of Nioh, completely free of charge, is a good thing. No requirements, no sign ups, the return of a straight up demo. For a new IP, Nioh has created a fair amount of buzz on the back of the demo. Releasing it soon after Dark Souls 3 has helped generate some extra attention, directly appealing to the target audience.
People are curiously approaching Nioh. Its demo has given people a good idea of exactly what the game has to offer. From the concepts at the heart of the game, to the general pace of the game, people now have something to build an opinion on. It begs the question of why don’t more games offer free demos?
The lack of demos has always been an annoying trend. Discussion over why demos have generally decreased has been a popular topic for some time. Perhaps it’s a lack of confidence in the product, maybe even a fear that it’ll reduce sales. With such aggressive and snazzy modern marketing, are demos even needed any more? Even the word ‘demo’ is seemingly being removed, replaced by the misuses of ‘Beta’.
With scaling costs of video game development, demos for every single release is not exactly realistic. New IPS, such as Nioh, benefit from supplying would be customers with hands on time. Not everyone can attend expos and trade shows, demos are the next best thing. Depending on where you look, there’s a few suggestions that the rise of streaming also plays a part. This feels more like a by-product rather than a cause. When we, the consumer, can’t play a game, the next step is watching someone play.
Nioh’s demo has produced much more buzz and attention than expected. Hopefully others will see this and take note. People have shared their experiences and impressions of Nioh. Twitch and Youtube have been engulfed with coverage. Small and big sites alike have been able to provide equal coverage, all because of one demo. Nioh’s demo may not be for everyone, but the fact it’s had a demo is a positive for us all.