Why IGN Will Outlive All Other Games Media

Why IGN Will Outlive All Other Games Media

Unlike smaller websites that stick to writing news, guides, and reviews, IGN has branched out like a massive tree. They’re not just writing. They’re making videos, hosting events, and covering all things entertainment. This diversification means more ways to make money and stay relevant as gamers’ tastes change.

Resources Rule the Game

IGN has a serious advantage – a giant army of staff and a Scrooge McDuck cash vault. This lets them experiment with new formats and jump on trends faster than smaller gaming companies that are struggling to survive. With a team of “well over a hundred people,” as Aftermath’s Nathan Grayson says, IGN can adapt and chase new opportunities, keeping them ahead of the competition.

“They’re not just writing about video games. They’re doing all sorts of content about video games across multiple different platforms. Pretty much everything under the sun.

They don’t just cover video games, they also cover entertainment. They are a multimedia entity. They also host events. ”
– Nathan Grayson, Co-founder of Aftermath

Playing Ball

IGN is seemingly willing to work with game companies, even if it means sacrificing some critical freedom. Grayson mentioned a Porsche-Overwatch collab he found “incredibly dumb.” But guess what? IGN was probably involved in the whole thing, which likely meant they couldn’t exactly tear it to shreds in a review. Grayson sums it up this way, “If you want to be IGN, you gotta play ball with everybody.”

“When you are big and well entrenched, you can fail a lot of times before you fail for the last time. Here we go: Porsche X Overwatch 2. Just a giant ad on their site that leads to an article they wrote about this.

In my opinion, it’s an incredibly dumb Porsche-Overwatch collaboration. But IGN can’t say it’s dumb. They are clearly also working as part of this collaboration.”
– Nathan Grayson, co-founder of Aftermath

Success with a Side of Compromise?

This “play nice” strategy might raise eyebrows about fairness, but it undeniably keeps IGN’s system going. By working with game companies, IGN gets exclusive content, sweet ad deals, and stays on top of the gaming world. But this cozy relationship comes at a cost: potentially compromising their ability to give honest reviews and analyze games with a critical eye.

“You’ve got to basically be working with all these companies, which IGN is, and they have been for a long time. That’s why IGN will survive. Because this is a company-dominated landscape, and they’re willing to be part of that.

The New York Times is another good example. They do journalism, obviously. They are one of the most well-known journalistic outlets in the world. But a lot of their money these days comes from the fact that they have a Games app that tons of people are subscribed only to. They show up to play games, not for news.”
– Nathan Grayson, co-founder of Aftermath

IGN’s strategy gives us a glimpse into what gaming media might become: diversify, adapt, and partner with game companies to survive. Smaller outlets might struggle to compete with IGN’s resources, but they can still carve out a space by focusing on deep dives, critical reviews, and building a strong community. The question remains: How will the balance between honest journalism and making money shake out? Only time will tell.

For Nathan Grayson’s complete insights on journalism and the gaming industry, read the full interview here.

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