The gaming sector is very quick in adopting new technologies and emerging trends in the entertainment industry. In fact, many tech analysts believe that if you want to get a glimpse of tech advancements in the entertainment industry, you should look at what game developers and gamers are doing.
Technology evolves quickly, and every change brings with it new trends. Game developers and gaming hardware manufacturers are always trying to outdo each other by implementing impressive innovations in their product releases. The good thing about this competition is that it pushes the industry forward. But it also causes rapid and drastic changes, particularly for the end-user – the gamer. Here are the top five trends that are currently reshaping the gaming landscape.
Live In-Game Streaming
Live streaming gameplay has become a widespread practice among gamers. Live streaming means the footage is uploaded during the actual gameplay. Streaming live gameplay began with game reviewers on YouTube and game tournaments, but it has since been adopted by regular gamers.
streaming is made possible by fast internet access, which nowadays includes 5G connectivity and the availability of several live streaming platforms and tools. Gamers rarely need to use third-party applications to stream live gameplay; some games even come with built-in streaming features.
Mobile gaming is not exactly new, but over the last few years, it has become nearly as big as desktop gaming. Thanks to the release of powerful smartphones with performance specs that rival some laptops and advances mobile OS, game developers have been able to create triple-AAA game titles for mobile gamers. Mobile games are no longer the boring 4-bit platforms from a decade or so back; they are now packed with stunning graphics, HD resolution, online multiplayer options, and complex narratives.
Dedicated hand-held gaming consoles are also on the verge of making a comeback following the latest release of the Nintendo Switch and other similar consoles. However, it’s not clear whether this is the right move in a market that is already dominated by hardware-capable smartphones.
Virtual reality has been around for a while, but it’s now beginning to gain some traction in the market. Game developers have started releasing popular and new game titles specifically for VR gameplay. Hardware manufacturers have also made impressive progress in solving some of the main VR issues, such as compatibility and the complicated setup. Although VR is still quite expensive for the average gamer and only works well with the latest consoles and graphics cards, it's much closer now to the gamer than it has ever been.
Appreciation for Indie Games
Indies are games developed and released by groups of individuals or small companies. In the past, these games were often received as low-grade attempts at competing with triple-AAA titles. They only appealed to most gamers due to their relatively low prices. But today, the gaming community has grown more appreciative of independent game developers and their products. Most indie developers have also stepped up, and are now releases titles that directly compete with giant game publishers in every genre.
Much like VR, augmented reality is also gaining some traction nowadays. AR is a technology that allows players to view and even interact with digital or graphical features overlaid in the natural world. What’s made AR so popular is its integration with mobile platforms. The development and release of exciting AR gadget such as AR glasses are also helping push the technology to gamers. AR-focused games such as Pokémon-Go have also won the hearts of both gamers and non-gamers.
Trends and innovation in the gaming world are often hard to predict and anticipate. New ideas are always flooding the industry, and it only takes a brave innovator to bring some of those ideas to life. But the fact is, you should expect to see more and more innovations in gaming in the coming years.