On Line Financial Trading & Stock Market Simulations

Z/Yen Limited, 2000

22 Pages Posted: 8 Oct 2020

Date Written: October 01, 2000


The worldwide computer games market, worth around £969m in sales in the UK alone, is highly competitive and dangerously risky. Companies that get it right scoop the pot but just a few wrong moves spells disaster. “Close but no cigar” is not an option – games typically take two years and around £1m to develop but 10% of games take 90% of revenues.

Technology drives success and the growth of processing power on the Internet is beginning to change the computer games marketplace. Games can now be released in beta-test on the Web, bug-tested and customer reviewed before full commercial launch leading to speedier development and testing of ideas without blowing the whole company on a gamble. This aids diversification of genres. Although traditional action/adventure/flight simulations still account for most of the market, the popularity of “God” games such as SimCity and The Sims shows a willingness for customers to try out other ideas if the underlying premise is attractive and the presentation is good.

Customers are also becoming less and less keen to spend money on a game, usually around £35 to £40 per CD-ROM, before trying it out first. This is leading to new business models. For example, Freeloader.com, officially launched 30 May 2000, offers users the ability to download the first level of popular computer games for free. The next level can be downloaded once users have built up enough credits by clicking on the site’s advertising.

The Internet is also opening up the marketplace to new competitors as online games can be developed at a fraction of the cost of PC-based packages. Not only for other games companies but anyone who wants to enhance their existing site with a fun or educational add-on.

Most of all, the Internet offers true multiplayer interaction. This creates the opportunity for games where players no longer purely to pre-determined or external events outside their control but by playing the game, actively influence how it proceeds.

Internet online gaming is still in its infancy, but the potential is substantial.

Keywords: Gaming, Simulations, Stock Market, Financial Trading

JEL Classification: O00 - General

Suggested Citation

Group, Z/Yen, On Line Financial Trading & Stock Market Simulations (October 01, 2000). Z/Yen Limited, 2000, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3677007 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3677007

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