by bapenguin
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Game industry trends of 2018

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In any industry, competition is a vital concept as it triggers technological advancement. Similarly, innovations are inevitable in the competitive gaming market. Gaming corporations are making bigger strides to keep up with the technology tide.

Developers are putting efforts to ensure that their conceived ideas become a reality. Ultimately, it is the consumers, or rather the gamers, who benefit from these endeavours. A lot of trends have emerged in the gaming community and many gamers are more inclined towards high definition graphics and virtual reality.

In this regard, cutthroat competition is the order of the day on gaming platforms. For example, each gaming website tries to improve user experience in a bid to overtake the rest. Of course, every platform wants to be the most popular by covering a broader market.

It is a never-ending battle as thousands of gaming websites strive to capture players’ attention. Still, uncouth entities and individuals are trying to exploit the sweet spots in the industry. Among the potential threats facing gaming apps is game torrents. Unsolicited sharing of files across the internet ultimately affects the game revenue.

With 2019 right around the corner, this is the best time to examine major game industry trends of 2018 and give predictions concerning how they will continue influencing the landscape and beyond.

Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality (AR) is a technological concept of superimposing the information that we actually see, i.e. images, texts and sounds. Do not confuse it with Virtual Reality which is a computer-generated environment which allows people to interact and get immersed in. AR adds on to the reality we would typically see on our world instead of replacing it.

It is indeed a futuristic technology even though a portion of the concept has been there for decades. A good example is the heads-up presentations in fighter aircraft which date back in the late 90s. Those displays allowed people to see the altitude, speed and direction of an aircraft in the past. After a while, they started showing the objects around the field of view.

For a while, Pokemon Go garnered a huge following and then reached a point where it wasn’t appealing enough like the Niantic. Even with a steep drop, Pokemon Go enabled gamers to see strangers including those who were never into gaming. The popularity of this game saw multitudes roaming the streets.

The fans later turned to Niantic, taking it to the top. Reason being? An amalgam of the two was worth watching.

In 2018, AR has been favoured more than VR for because it is easier to adopt. Moreover, VR headsets are pricey and not all of them guarantee a flawless experience. The use of Augmented reality necessitates more advanced devices like smartphones which most people already have.

Various trending games attribute their success to Augmented Reality, e.g. ARise, AR Dragon, ARZombie, among others.

Game streaming and advertising

A while ago, Google announced the Project Stream and started testing the performance using “Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey” by Ubisoft. The most intriguing part of this solution is that it facilitates streaming of graphically-optimized games on any computer.

Google is not the first company to try game streaming and marketing. Other entities have tried but quit along the way due to limited resources. Since Google is a big name and has the necessary resources, we hope that they will bring the idea into reality and release it on the market, even if it begins in the 10 most developed nations.

Opening doors to a whole new market in the gaming industry will attract more players. Big gaming corporations are being challenged to reinvent their models into software solutions.

Diversity and Inclusivity

2018 has been a hot plate for overdue spillover effects. Some ideologies seem to be going rampant, e.g. xenophobia, racism, homophobia, sexism, and so on. Video gaming is a perfect option for reaching all sorts of audiences particularly the millennials.

2018 games feature inclusivity and diversity, exposing children and young adults to the value of being unique. Diversity has been prevalent in the world of video gaming because entertainment seems to be crawling towards equality.

Mobile Gaming

Mobile gaming is a massive trend in China and it’s also taking over in the rest of the world. Konami, a Japanese producer, announced that the company would focus on mobile. The same trend is also happening in the Western nations. For example, Blizzard promised to optimize the next Diablo for mobile.

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We shall witness the same plan in more gaming landscapes. Gradually, game advertisers will have an edge in mobile gaming. The relevance of portable devices continues to grow each day with the app stores becoming more saturated.

Interestingly, mobile gaming is related to eSports which are also rising in popularity. Mobile devices make life easier, allowing players to interact anytime and anywhere.

Final Word

It seems like the gaming industry has been exploiting the trends mentioned above to the maximum in 2018. Devices are getting smarter and developers are becoming more competitive and creative. Some practices have been there for a while and they don’t seem to be going anywhere. No doubt, gaming platforms will continue taking advantages of the emerging potentials to remain on top of the line.

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