A lot of people "outgrow" videogames. I don't necessarily believe that's accurate, feeling rather that it's more a shift in interests. Did I ever think it would happen to me? History would imply otherwise, but now I'm really starting to lose hope in the games industry. Maybe the only thing that can renew my faith is this fall's glut of console releases (PS3 and Nintendo's...thing), because I felt like things had really opened up in the shift from SNES/Genesis to Saturn/PS1/N64, but with every console since then (Dreamcast, PS2, Xbox, GameCube, Xbox 360), I feel like things have been regressing, sticking to the tried and true. Most of the best games of the last several years have been sequels or threequels to games that were great on the PS1 and are now just losing steam.
The industry crashed back in 1983 in Atari's heydey, mostly due to no quality control, too many subpar titles, and too many me-too derivative games, sequels or one-offs like Ms. Pac-Man, Super Pac-Man, and so on. So what's the state of the industry today? Very similar. QC is at an all-time low (mostly a money issue) where companies want to push something out to retail as fast as possible, then fix all the bugs and broken bits later on with subsequent patches. They're releasing beta (unfinished) software, making the consumers the unpaid (or rather paying) beta testers.
This became the accepted norm for PC gamers, but now it's moving to consoles since many come equipped for Internet connectivity and have hard drives pre-installed for saving downloadable content. What worries me is that since many console gamers have no idea what the PC gaming climate is like and have never experienced the horrors of buying a broken game KNOWING you'd have to wait for unfortunate patches, they may immediately grow accustomed to it, which just enables the game companies to get more and more lazy with testing their products to make sure they work before release. Is it any wonder that Microsoft was one of the first companies to start this trend on game consoles? They've been releasing unfinished products for the PC for years.
Lately, products have become largely derivative once again. Every year we see the same football game (Madden) with a new coat of paint and roster updates. Some series are up to a fifth or sixth entry when many players lost interest after the second. A few of these have been reprehensibly bad, like the PS2's first iterations of the Syphon Filter and Driver series. They're simply awful, by the developers' own admissions! But these games have higher and higher budgets and go to retail simply in the hopes of recouping some of that expense on name recognition alone. "Hope the suckers snap it up before word of mouth gets around." Kind of like when I went to see the sequel to The Crow in theaters. Holy god that movie sucked, but I saw it simply based on the pedigree of the original.