I’ve always liked James Patterson, despite having never read anything by him. Sort of like being amiable about the neighbor down the street whom you’ve only ever seen when he’s taking out the trash. I saw a video, on Amazon.com, of Patterson delivering his book to a reader and chatting and he seemed like a nice, down-to-earth guy.
Which is probably true, and probably still is, but now he’s a nice, down-to-earth guy who’s gone on the record saying something dumb.
I’m not sure what success he expects in this market. The computer as a video gaming platform is in its lull right now (it has peaks and dips, very steadily, throughout the years, you can watch it rise and fall like the tides as the consoles jump past, and then sit while the computer steadily works its way ahead). Right now, the computer game market is not only in a lull, it’s flooded with CSI games, and Law & Order games, and even Nancy Drew games. And now, Patterson games.
But that’s not the nitwittery. The nitwit thing to say was:
It strikes me that the videogame area is an incredibly lucrative niche market, one populated by a small number of boys – and grown-up boys – who like to shoot things and spend a lot of money. But that excludes most of the universe,” he told the Hollywood Reporter.
Which, honestly, hasn’t been true in years. That’s no more true than saying all comic book stores are creepy, dimly-lit places full of sweaty overweight men who live with their mothers and don’t know what girls are. That’s not true anymore either (unless we apply it to MySpace, and then…)
There’s plenty of girl gamers. And gamers of a wide age range now. Now, if we look at hardcore gaming, then yes, it’s probably grown-up boys with money who like to shoot things. Sure. But honestly, anything James Patterson (who probably has very little to do with the game making, except consulting) is not going to be even a little bit hardcore gaming. Again, like the CSI games, or Bejewelled.
Ah well. He still seems like a pretty nice guy.