Characteristics of a game demo

video games

The demo version of the video game (game demo) is version of the video game which is used for its demonstration and advertising, it is is free. Demo version is available before or after the game’s release.

It is intended to ensure that the potential audience experience the game, its gameplay and other features, and then decided to buy it. Game demos differs from the full release version so that it, in fact, it is only a small part of the game.

As a rule, the demo version of the game contains one or several game levels or limits the possible time of the game. The purpose of the demo is to give the player an idea of the full game, but do not replace it with another.

In the early 1990s, the spread of the shareware version of the game was a popular method of publishing for small developers. This type of sharing gave users the chance to try out the free part of the game before deciding to buy the full version or not.

Typically, the free part is a first episode or a section of the game. Racks with games on diskette format 5 1/ 4 ” and later 3.5″ were common in many stores, and the cost was very low.

As shareware games were essentially free, the price includes only the cost of media, packaging and delivery. Sometimes discs of demo games were placed inside the packages with the disk of another game, published by the same company, as a makeweight.

By the mid-90s games size increased so much that they began to produce on separate CD-ROMs rather than on diskettes. Since that time, the demo also began to spread on the CD in two ways: on the disks that were distributed with gaming magazines, and by downloading from the Internet.

Some websites, such as, specialize in collecting, primarily, demo versions of games.

There is a technical difference between shareware games and demo versions of games. Shareware game can update to the full commercial version by adding episodes and levels.

In this case, shareware games are used as the basis for the commercial superstructure. In some games existed the possibility to use the stored data in the full game.

While present day shareware games began to develop in the other direction, a demo version is a fully separated from the full versions of products that do not interact with them.

In fact, modern game demo is a complete self-contained full featured game that can contain both single-player and multiplayer mode. The main difference from the full game – it’s a much smaller amount of content.

For example, in the demo version of the game, it may be granted only one level from the full version, which the player can buy in a store.

Lately, great popularity was received in the distribution channels of demo versions of games like Xbox Live and PlayStation Network, Steam.

In early March 2010, Sony registered a patent, which describes a new type of demos. According to the description in the patent, this type of demos will be full or nearly full version of the game.

As you progress through the game various features and content from the demo version will be gradually removed. Deletion of content will be implemented through special triggers. Circumcision features and content should be in accordance with the number of gaming sessions, or after some time.

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