The term hardcore vs. casual debate is currently a HUGE hot button issue in the gaming community. On one end of the spectrum, you have the "hardcore" players who despise anything that doesn't have guns, girls, and gore. They demonize the Wii as the bane of video games, stating that it "ruined it for all of us". On the other end of the spectrum, you have the "casuals" who demand that they be spoon fed everything during the course of the game. They dismiss anything that can't be beaten over the course of a weekend. This includes any strategy game, tactical action game, any RPG (except Fable II), and pretty much anything else that requires improvised thought. Did you notice anything missing in these two sides?
Yeah you did, because fun factor has been all but cut from the equation. It's now all about either "Wow, look at his Gamertag, he's really hardcore", or "I wanna get through this with as few obstacles as possible". Hardcore gamers won't give World of Goo a second look but will submit themselves to the likes of Grand Theft Auto, only to bitch about it online. If they don't enjoy this series, why do they still buy them? inFAMOUS also comes to mind here. I've never played it (I don't have a PS3) but from what I've heard, so many others have and with nothing good to say about it. It's not about having fun anymore, it's about playing hardcore games because their fragile gamer egos can't handle anything deemed casual. Word to these people, try Peggle, sure it's casual, but it's enjoyable. Trust me.
Then you got the casuals. They're not nearly as bitter the hardcore crowd, but anything involving trial & error, cognitive thought, or any game that you can "lose" and they'll refuse to play it. These people hate Splinter Cell because it requires careful timing and precision. They piss on tactical shooters because taking cover is too realistic and they don't want to invest the time to plan their COA (that means course of action). Anything that requires reading is too much for them to handle. READING for Christ's sake. And yet, all I hear from them is how boring MySims, Wii Fit and Prince of Persia are. But anything that tests their skills is too much for their fragile egos to handle. My advice to these gamers, try a strategy game (I recommend Medieval II: Total War, I haven't tried Empire yet, so I don't want to give it my seal of approval yet). Or invest in a heavy-duty RPG like Neverwinter Nights, learn to play it. Trust me, it'll be fun.
Now I know that what is fun to me might not be to someone else, but there is a reason why they're called video games. Games are meant to be fun, It should be about being hardcore and inflating your Gamerscore or playing for playing's sake. It should be about having fun and if both parties simply broaden their horizons, we'll all have more fun