Online gaming might very well be a relatively new invention, but it is changing all the time. It used to be that jumping on your Xbox and chatting on your headset to friends was the very peak of technology and whilst that’s still an incredible feat of human ingenuity, the online gaming industry has not been resting on its laurels. There have been so many new ideas brought to this industry, that it was hard to find the handful that really stood out the most, but we’ve done it!
Free Base Games
One of the biggest technology trends, in terms of money-making, that has come about in recent years is the trend of the free base game. It used to be that if you wanted an online game, you generally had to pay for it. For the vast majority of console games, this is still true, but mobile and browser-based games have become increasingly free to play. Of course, early pioneers of this format of gaming exist, World of Warcraft and similar MMORPG games have existed for years, but without the proliferation of microtransactions that are necessary to advance in today’s offerings. The way that these games make money is actually a more sustainable business model than a one-off game purchase. Once the consumer had bought the game, the money-making opportunity was over. Now the consumer pays nothing for the game at the outset, but as they progress further they want to skip ahead, upgrade something or unlock an expansion pack and will pay numerous small amounts of money. This gives a steady ‘subscription style’ flow of money to the games company, perfect for achieving a healthy cash flow.
Live Dealer Casinos
Playing real money poker has been a growing field for a long time now. Many players like the convenience of being able to play from their own homes, others enjoy being able to play at any time of day or being able to connect with people from all over the world. One aspect of this trend that is still fairly new though, is live dealer casinos. This technology has been around for a while but has been prohibitively expensive until quite recently. Live dealer casinos allow people to interact with a real person who deals cards and takes bets. This is all done via a Game Control Unit, multiple sophisticated cameras, and an Optical Character Recognition device. These pieces of tech all work together to allow the user an experience that is as close as possible to a real casino, all from the comfort of their own home.
A popular avenue for investors in the gaming industry has been in live streaming companies The front runner of all of these is Twitch, which lets avid gamers sign up to their platform and broadcast to millions of followers. Whilst for some of us being forced to wait our turn and watch an older sibling play a video game was frustrating, it turns out that now a lot of people really enjoy it. Twitch continues to report healthy year-on-year growth and their biggest streamers make plenty of money from adoring fans. Live streaming might not be something that all of us enjoy watching, but it is a massive area of the market that deserves attention from anyone looking to cash in.