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Nacon publishing boss says too many new video games are on the market

Dozens of games release on Steam and die unseen, Nacon’s Benoit Clerc says

The games industry is going through several crises, as development costs soar and companies lay off employees in the thousands, and Nacon’s head of publishing Benoit Clerc says part of the problem is that too many video games are on the market. Clerc made the comments during an interview with, where he outlined the struggles facing mid-sized publishers, including Nacon.

“We're seeing today the results of investment made after [COVID] when the market was bursting, and every game was making a lot of money so there were a lot of investments being made,” Clerc said. “This is two or three years after that, so the games we're seeing now on the market were financed in that time and there are simply too many for customers to be able to play them.”

"When you look at Steam some days, there are 50 or 60 games released in one day only so it's more difficult to get enough traction to expose a game. We're seeing releases that are without a day one, to use the old retail expression, without any exposure of a title that has been properly marketed."

In addition to dozens of games launching virtually unseen by audiences, Clerc said the flood of releases makes it harder to find and speak to niches who would appreciate and purchase a game. Clerc said that previously, a studio making a deckbuilder could market to that niche with a reasonable chance of success.

"You're in a different situation in the market currently,” Clerc says. “You have games that have nothing super specific to say to a specific group of gamers."

That sounds a little harsh, though it’s hard not to see the truth in Clerc’s words after seeing situations where fans react with exhaustion to announcements of several games in a given genre – mocking the 2023 Nintendo Direct that debuted multiple farming games, for example.

Clerc said the result of all this is the drive for publishers to acquire studios that serve specific niches, and while he says Nacon is taking care not to overextend, we’ve seen firsthand how disastrous such a strategy can be. Embracer Group acquired dozens of studios during the pandemic, only to close many of them and lay off hundreds of workers in 2023. Clerc believes one way to avoid such a dilemma is investing in innovation and doing a better job of understanding audiences, something he said Nacon will focus on in-depth in 2024.