Last year Sega Europe launched Football Manager 20 with a new kind of case, a recyclable one. The new box is cardboard and completely sustainable, unlike most game cases, which require specialised equipment that most recycling centres don’t have. The developers actually snuck the added cost into their plans for the game without Sega Europe noticing, and because the added cost had been accounted for, it didn’t affect the bottom line for game sales. That’s why Sega Europe is rolling these new cases out for all of their future PC releases, but really this needs to be an industry standard immediately.
Save The Planet
Plastic is a big problem, and while a lot of it can be recycled, there are still loads of toxic gasses released through creating it in the first place. Cardboard boxes cost a bit more, but they’re more than recyclable, they’re compostable. The fact that these new cases can be recycled much more easily means that more waste form this industry will be recycled, but it also means that anyone who can’t be bothered to recycle can just throw the boxes in the bin without needing to think about it. Landfill is an issue, but when landfill isn’t filled with plastic, which takes hundreds of years to biodegrade, then it’s a little bit less of an issue.
We will be told that the cost of these cases needs to be added to the price of the game, but Football Manager 20 demonstrates that this isn’t the case. Developers need to add the cost into their plans fro the game on a commercial level, and this will make it easier for publishers to approve the use of a cardboard box. Even if we do end up needing to pay more for our games, which really wouldn’t be much if the cost was like for like, it’s worth it compared to the cost the planet will have to pay.
It’s not easy to avoid the fact that our climate has irrevocably changed, but we can lessen the impact that we make by putting big changes in place right now. The short-term solutions won’t have any sort of worthwhile impact on the environment, but a long-term change like this will have a huge impact. The games industry is filled with collectibles, products that cost nothing to make but cost a lot to buy, and sit on a shelf until they’re thrown out or sold. These products are a big part of why people target games as a big contributor to climate change, but with changes like this cardboard box, maybe the whole industry can become much greener in the long run.