The gaming industry is booming. It’s becoming a hugely profitable and exciting corner of the modern economy. With its ever-increasing focus on quality and immersion, the medium has come of age as a creative force in its own right.
But it still faces significant challenges that need to be overcome if it is to reach its true potential as an industry. The technology sector is already a key part of this transformation and will continue to drive change in the years ahead. Here are some of the most important gaming trends of the 2020s.
Virtual Reality Is the Future of Gaming
The gaming industry has been around for more than 30 years. It’s a relatively young industry, with relatively young players. But it’s now experiencing a cultural shift that will have huge implications for the way it is played.
Like many creative fields, arts and entertainment, gaming has evolved. The original consoles were wired, requiring you to plug them into an electrical socket.
Nowadays, almost all consoles are wireless, and most games support virtual reality (VR) and immersive 2D games as well as 3D head-to-head or multi-player games. This is leading to a revamp of how we play video games.
Social Networking and Video Games
Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are nearly synonymous with social media. But how many people know that the social gaming platform, Facebook, was first introduced in 2005?
And that the video game, “Super Mario Bros.”, was first released in 1991 as a handheld device? Facebook and gaming go hand-in-hand. According to Facebook, more than 25 billion “connections” have been made through their platform.
And more than 1 billion “messages” have been sent across the network. This is leading to a shift in how people socialize and play games alike.
Video Games Are the New Music Industry
Although gaming has been around for longer than the music industry, it’s often been viewed as a niche, child’s play industry. While it has grown in size and scope, its audience has also remained relatively small.
But now, with more than 100 million active users in 191 countries and territories, gaming is experiencing a moment of truth in the shape of online and mobile games.
Already, the industry is transforming from a niche to a major business. It’s no secret that the video game industry is very male-dominated. But in the past decade, this has begun to change.
In 2000, there were fewer than 10,000 female developers in the world. But today, this number has grown to more than 70,000. And the gaming audience is growing up.
3D Graphics Are Here to Stay
One of the most striking things about modern gaming is the quality of both the graphics and the sound. The evolution of 3D graphics is largely due to the efforts of two men: Samorost 3 and was founded by artist Rob Crowther.
Samorost 3 started life as a free, open-source software. But in 2009, its developers released the software as a commercial product. Since then, the graphics engine has been entirely rewritten from the ground up as a volumetric, real-time, drop-shadowing environment.
This means that Samorost 3 can realistically represent a huge range of visual effects, from darkness to light, shadow to shine, and fog to haze. Real-time, drop-shadowing has become the norm in gaming.
And, according to Business Insider, this is set to continue to improve in the years ahead, with technologies such as RTX (rapid time-of-sky) and T2 (temporal disparity) being developed.
Augmented and Virtual Reality Are the Future
Racing games, strategy games, and first-person shooters are all genres that have largely remained static for decades. But the boundaries between games are slowly beginning to blur.
Robotics and AI are already making their mark in the gaming industry, with games such as RoboRally and house-rule games such as Scrabble challenging the status quo. But the real surprise here is that VR is now being regarded as a real-world gaming experience.
VR is already being used in major sporting events, such as the US Open and the NBA Finals. It’s also being considered as a training tool for the military and law enforcement.
The gaming industry is experiencing a period of great change. These trends will have a significant impact on the industry in the years ahead. Stay informed and stay ahead by staying on top of the latest developments in the gaming industry.