You may not have noticed, but the gaming industry has been slowly taking over the world during the past few years. Today, the industry is worth more than the movie and music industries combined, and with more and more people playing than ever before, that status looks set to remain the same in the years to come. So, how did we get to this level? Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why technology simply became so, so good.
People have always had an interest in gaming. Indeed, since the first video games came out back in the 1970s, they’ve attracted an audience. Alas, interest in gaming hasn’t always translated to a high number of players. After all, the technology needed to play those games were expensive, and only a lucky few could afford it. Today, we’re at a point where most people have a gaming console right in their pockets. Significant tech improvements have helped to boost the quality and functionality of mobile games. Anyone who wants to play a game just has to take out their smartphone, click a few buttons, and they’re away.
People like it when things work seamlessly. It’s frustrating to have one device that uses one type of software and another that uses another. Or, at least, it is if those devices can’t speak to one another.
The gaming industry has overcome this issue by introducing cross-platform technology, allowing gamers to have the same experience regardless of device. A PlayStation player could play against an Xbox user, for example, or begin a game on their laptop and then continue it on their smartphone. This type of technological improvement sounds inconsequential, but it greatly improves the user experience. Plus, there’s a sense that only the gaming industry would invest the time, energy, and money to make this happen.
People of a certain age will remember a time when video games were very much a low-brow pastime. But there are few people who say that today, and it’s largely thanks to some seriously impressive creative breakthroughs that pushed the gaming industry forward. Indeed, there are some games that could rightly be considered art. The complexity of games such as Mass Effect, Starcraft, Portal, and Grand Theft Auto took the idea of video games as simplistic pastimes and turned it on its head. It’s a bit like when people scoffed at rock and roll when it first burst onto the scene (or any other genre, actually), but then began paying attention when records such as The Velvet Underground & Nico made it to the airwaves.
Range of Games
It’s worth remembering that, in real terms, video games haven’t been around all that long. In the early days, which takes us up to the late nineties, there just weren’t that many games to play. And the games that were available were generally all in the same three or four genres. Everyone but the most committed of gamers reasonably got bored after a while. Today, there’s an endless number of games that a person can play, in a wide range of genres. Gaming became so good not just because of the quality of games but because it became a diverse industry, which gave both hardcore and casual gamers a lot to play with.
There’s Been Serious Investment
Finally, there’s the matter of money. There’s no way that the gaming industry could have become so large and so awesome without serious investment. And serious investment is what it has had. We mentioned earlier how it’s now worth more than Hollywood and the music industry. What matters here is what the industry does with its money. Rather than sitting on the funds, it invests them into new technology, new games, and new playing experiences. It’s understandable why gaming is so good; it is, after all, a well-oiled, highly creative industry that’s paved with gold.