Screenshot of Delicious Deluxe, from Big Fish Games.

This isn’t something to which a self-proclaimed gamer likes to admit, but I play a LOT of downloadable arcade games.

You know, those you can either play online or download for 15 bucks? Love ’em.

Screenshot of Snowy Lunch Rush, from Big Fish Games, my new favourite of the restaurant/diner casual games.

From busing plates and taking orders to hunting down criminals to assembling teddy bears to delivering pizza to baking cakes to ringing up shopping, casual games, which have been the domain of online female gamers, are just becoming better and more fun with time. Best of all, they’re cheap to develop, easy to market (all downloadable online), and appealing to women. The golden formula to a game publisher.

While I still play the ‘triple A’ games that often challenge my hardware (and my husband’s wallet every few months or so), it is these cartoonish, 2D casual games I am getting fond of. Low maintenance, entertaining, gentle or no learning curve, and best of all, easy to put down, these surprisingly well-made and oftentimes beautiful casual games fill nap times and school hours and pre-bedtime boredom nicely, without asking for too much in return.

A non-commital, casual relationship. Ironically, that’s what we girls like. In our computer games, anyway.

Perhaps I’m just getting old, but I see myself playing these games for a long, long time. Much longer than Counter Strike or World of Warcraft or any other triple A game.

And that, my friends, is sustainable business.


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