Gaming has entered the mainstream, and it brings together people from all corners of the world. Where it was once a fair niche activity for hardcore gamers only, it is now something many more people like to do on a casual basis. Many of these more casual, modern gamers would not have even thought about playing games in the past!
But why has gaming grown so much in the last decade or two? When you dig a bit deeper, there are a few reasons which explain what has happened. Firstly, you must understand that modern gaming is a multi-faceted beast, with many strings to its bow. It is no longer just about people playing video games alone in their bedrooms.
Modern gaming encompasses online video gaming, eSports, mobile play, and iGaming. This diversified structure allows gaming to reach more people and attract more players. It is also worth noting that gaming has much better PR now, and companies within it spend lots to market their products. This marketing can involve elite-level sports stars or top celebs to make gaming even more appealing to potential customers.
Trends in gaming
In societal terms, gaming seems cooler these days and is more widely accepted as an okay to enjoy hobby. That has been helped by the trends in gaming over recent times regarding what titles you can play. Online casino games are a good example of this in action.
NetEnt is one of the top studios in iGaming, and its games are popular with players due to their innovative design, range of themes, excellent RTP rates, and attractive bonus features. For a complete list of top NetEnt games to enjoy, visit netentcasino.com today; it brings together all you need to know in one handy-to-read place. By producing games that people like to play, studios like NetEnt help drive trends in gaming and make online casino games a hot gaming niche.
Of course, trends are critical in video gaming, and they help show what games people like to play, so studios can produce them to grow the sector. But how have video game trends changed in the last few years, and how does the picture look now?
Which video game genres are popular currently?
The genre which seems to be rising to prominence most quickly right now is Action/RPG titles. This type of game, for example, saw a rise in peak Twitch viewers of over 300,000 from April 2020 to April 2021. That was a rise in peak viewer numbers of 813%! Titles like Grim Dawn and Path of Exile are good examples of modern video games in this niche. Full of excitement, action, and drama, it seems people also love the storytelling in these games and the chance to get fully immersed in the game’s world.
Although not a new genre, real-time strategy games have grown in popularity to be an even hotter current gaming trend. This saw an increase in Twitch viewers of over 63,000 from April 2020 to April 2021. Titles like Age of Empires and Warhammer II are examples of this type of game. These games get so much love due to the strategic nature of their gameplay plus the competitive, multi-player design many have.
In terms of video game trends, the last genre to really stand out positively is fighting/martial arts games. The appeal of these is pretty obvious; who doesn’t like putting some awesome moves on their opponent and getting involved with some bone-crushing action? When you think that Mortal Kombat 11 sold eight million copies globally by October 2020 and is now available on platforms like Steam, it is clear how popular this genre is right now.
Which gaming genres have fallen out of favor recently?
In contrast to the genres that have done well in the last year or two, you must also look at all the different types of video game genres to see which have declined in popularity. One good example is the interactive music games people used to love, which involved holding plastic instruments to game with.
At one time, the Guitar Hero franchise sold lots of units and was a real crowd-pleaser. The last installment in 2015 had poor sales and poor reception – as a result, most of the game developers were let go, and the DLC streaming service was closed! The other big name in this genre was Rock Band, but Rock Band 4 also failed to sell as well as expected and seemed to fall foul of a change in trends around this type of game. This sums up what a low ebb these interactive, musical style titles are at right now.
Although racing games, in general, are still popular, it is more open world types (like the hotly anticipated Forza Horizon 5) or racing sims (like the Gran Turismo franchise) which are played mostly. This means arcade racers like Project Gotham or Burnout are not as hot currently. It seems the lack of realism is not something gamers enjoy for now. If you take a look at the current charts from the Steam platform around popular games, you will see no arcade-style racers are on there, which tells its own story.
Video game trends are worth keeping an eye on
Video gaming is a sector of constantly changing trends and continually evolving tastes. What is hot one year can suddenly be yesterday’s news in 12 months. That is illustrated by how the top current genres we have looked at have risen quickly recently, while others have fallen way down the pecking order over time. When you also look at how trends in other gaming areas (like eSports and online casino slots) impact, it is clear just how important changing trends are to gaming overall.