There’s nothing anywhere near official about the term “simulated-life” economy, but its principles definitely exist and its fundamentals are constantly perpetuated. The simulated-life economy is that market over which economic activity is characterised by the trading of products and services which simulate extraordinary and even regular aspects of our lives, but life-aspects which aren’t inherently part of our everyday lives. Air guns come into focus as the subject of the case study, because these pellet or BB guns essentially allow would-be gun enthusiasts to actually simulate events around gun ownership and handling.
Simulated life elements and events
While the overall simulated-life economy probably encompasses all areas of our lives, both as it exists today and historically, air pistols perhaps make for a great case study subject because of the rather straight-forward link between the simulations, and the life elements and events being simulated. If you were to conduct some searches for available air pistols for sale you would realise that it’s a huge market, but the best and most popular of these air guns for sale are those which are in some instances exact replicas of the real hand piece. A gun enthusiast who has an impressive collection of Gletcher air pistols is likely a would-be collector of real Gletcher pistols, but because of factors such as costs, practicality, and legality, they can’t otherwise buy the real deal. What is simulated though is the real-world reality of the power contained in a gun, which of course in reality is used for all manner of extraordinary and ordinary activities. Some of these activities appeal to the general public which otherwise cannot engage in those activities and so they turn to the simulated market.
Institutionalised marketing channels
What makes the simulated-life economy so successful is its institutionalised marketing channels, comprised out of subtle cues that don’t look like any marketing or advertising is being done at all. You could be watching a movie, for instance, and then see what looks like a fun activity, such as hunting down and shooting zombies and then that would plant the idea of getting an air gun in your mind.
Simulative products and services
The evidence in support of the desire to simulate otherwise inaccessible life-elements resides in the intricacies of the air pistol market. If it was just about the air guns themselves and it had nothing to do with simulation, there wouldn’t be similar versions of these pistols across different manufacturer brands, which often also manufacture real pistols. There are Beretta pistols that look very similar to a range of Walther pistols, for instance, and vice-versa, as witnessed in the APX’s (Beretta) similarity to a piece such as the Walther PPQ. Beyond physical products, simulative services make up the simulated-life economy, such as going to a shooting range or even a tactical air gun shooting event.
Once you look at pretty much every aspect of our lives, you’ll realise that this so-called simulated-life economy is nothing short of ubiquitous.