I’ve been putting a lot of thought in to what I wanted to say at the end of 2023. There was more I wanted to say about 2024. However, given everything that has been happening in 2023 alone, everything just felt hollow.
I do want to start by saying that I’m glad that I made it another year. Personally, things have not been easy for me and I thank everyone who’s been around and kept me on some sort of correct path. I’m glad that DCA exists and it has, for the most part, given me the outlet I needed.
This weekend, I heard a song from Lupe Fiasco, “Words I Never Said”. And that reminded me of something. There were things I should have said with relation to what we cover here at Desk Chair Analysts and I’d like to get into that.
As much as people want to cover and talk about technology as the miracle that will get us out of the latest iteration of human struggle, you’d be naive if you didn’t think newer struggles arise from it as well.
For everything that technology gives us, it takes things away from other people. What was a tedious task for people, was a job that will no longer exist because of technology. And that’s okay. Progress is going to happen. What makes it troubling is when that process is made despite the costs it will have towards the populace. When we make computers try to think and “dream” and “create”, it hurts those who have specially trained to hone their crafts. It reduces their work down to a result of a prompt.
This is only the latest instance of pain that technology has issued amongst the populace. I mean, the computer is literally named after the people who were doing calculations as far back as the 1600s.
While rampant capitalism has definitely skewed us towards a Black Mirror episode, it isn’t all bad. It believe it takes an understanding of the tools we have and how we can use them responsibly going forward. It’s with that attitude that DCA continues forward covering the tech stories that we do.
2023 was a wonderful year for gaming from a games perspective. As a John Oliver meme would suggest, it was banger after banger after banger!
What we also saw in 2023 was the drying of the well. Free flowing and cheap capital was made available to almost anyone who wanted it during the pandemic (as if we’re not still in it) to make sure companies were still able to retain employees if work was reduced or came to a stop.
But, as they say, the road to hell is paved with good intentions. A lot of companies, especially game developers and publishers could move from in-person work to remote. So, the money was used instead to build things that nobody wanted or asked for while other projects were in the works.
For the most part it worked. Money was coming in. Projects were being funded. And in 2022, we were seeing some of the work paying off. Now, this was legitimate work that started prior to the pandemic. It took a bit longer, but we finally got it.
Then came 2023. The writing on the walls started to appear. Of course, because it was the games industry, nobody paid attention. Turnover like this is to be expected. Besides, games are still coming out. The industry is healthy!
But what started out as a leaky faucet was turned into Niagara Falls. More and more people were losing jobs. But the roar of the falls were covered by the carnival at the bottom. So many games were coming out, you’d be forgiven for not noticing more developers were out of a job.
It was only when the carnival was closing for the year that people noticed what was happening at the waterfall. And when someone asked if anyone could say a few words for those folks, you get the most popular figure to say “That was some carnival, right?! Hope to see you next year!”
Like I said, 2023 was amazing for games, but at what costs. So many people lost jobs so close to the end of the year. A publisher closed its doors a weekend before Christmas. Not only that, but a developer have employee data all over the web because of a hack.
It is important to tell those stories and I like to think that DCA has been doing a great job of that since its inception.
After meeting with the team and sitting on it for a few days, I am really happy with what I created and what the team has done. We are tooling some things around and making it a bit easier for everyone to contribute.
I can’t wait to share what we have in store for you all in 2024. If you’d like to support everything we do, I encourage you to support us at Patreon over at https://patreon.com/deskchairanalysts.
Marcus “MajorLinux” Summers