Online gaming in its various guises now eclipses traditional formats. The explosion of the internet and, more importantly, the growth in the smart phone market has encouraged users to spend significant amounts of time online, tempted by the array of virtual environments and free online bonuses. A plethora of new games are set to hit the market in 2017, some of which are predicted to be game changers. But nostalgic ideas of gaming are being fractured. Technology now leads the way and takes with it a young generation of eclectic individuals playing a wide array of games led by these new trends in technology.
The proliferation of smart phones is considered to be one of the most important factors in growing online gaming. It is also responsible for, among other developments, equalising the gender balance in the gaming sector. It is predicted that the gaming sector will generate $108.9 billion in revenues this year with mobile being responsible for over 42% of the gross worth. It’s thought that over 75% of these online gaming revenues will be generated on a smart phone in 2017 – with the remaining quarter gleaned from tablets such as the iPad.
Phones are set to continue to dominate with sales of tablets decreasing globally – the UK being no exception to this trend. We know that mobile phone usage is roughly equal between men and women, with some research suggesting female usage outstripping that of their male counterparts, explaining the significant rise in the role of women in online gaming.
Live casinos have changed the face of the world of online gaming in the UK. This fully interactive and integrated experience has lured people away from traditional gaming conduits to explore the online world from the comfort of your own home. Casinos use industry leader software to ensure an excellent user experience – however, the real time deals are still administered by a real human being
Online casinos attract millions of online gamers through the trend of free online bonuses. Though large quantities of players are required to mitigate the costly expense of installing the live casino technologies – it appears to be working so far. Many online establishments offer users welcome credits as well as free bonuses when deposits are made into the player’s account.
Many technology commentators expressed disappointment at the lack of insinuating in the world of virtual reality in 2016 but have promised that 2017 is set for a VR revolution. Resident Evil 7 has been one of the year’s most high-profile VR games thus far. While it is expected that studios will move away from trying to make home-entertainment lead VR profitable, it will still be at the forefront of developer’s minds when they are working on other areas within the gaming industry.
One of the key focuses of the gaming sector is an attempt to make VR more integrated rather than isolationist. Anna Sweet, head of development at Oculu expressed her willingness for consumer interaction through virtual reality. “When you get two people together in a virtual space, and you actually get to see how they move and how they talk, and how they interact with the world, it lets you connect as if you were really actually in that room with them. And it’s pretty powerful.”
It’s hard to ignore the influence of augmented reality after it took the world by storm in the form of Pokemon Go last summer. If it becomes a permanent fixture in the world of online gaming is not yet clear but it is currently a trend with a steep upwards trajectory. It is AR ability to disrupt the real world that is its driving appeal. While virtual reality might be able to take you to space, AR lets you physically explore the world around you in a totally new a way. It also lets you interact with a range of characters as if they were present in reality. The US-based fintech company, Lampix, recently raised millions of dollars via crowd funding for their new augmented reality game Crypto – evidently there is an appetite for ongoing development in this field.
The Future of Online Gaming
With the sales of mobile phones projected to rocket over the coming decades and a tightening of policy regarding online bullying, the trend of connectivity is only set to continue. Through all emerging online gaming trends, be that augmented reality or live casinos, most indicators point towards greater interaction between players. This isn’t to say that the world of the solo player will cease to exist, rather rates are likely to remain consistent while interactive platforms expand and develop.