Many people in the gaming community, such as myself, can agree that over the last couple of decades, the gaming industry has grown tremendously. Variety.com released an article about the growth of the gaming community, stating that because of “mobile games and innovative offerings”, the video games market could become a $300 billion industry by 2025.Which would more than double what the video game industry earned in 2018.
Personally, and something I think most gamers would agree on, is that this growth can also be attributed to the overall improvement in the quality of video games. More than just huge companies are finding success as well. Indie developers have began to release titles that become universally loved, and the community has grown larger as games become more and more popular.
Games like ‘Overwatch’ and ‘Rainbow Six Siege’ have been introduced as replayable multiplayer online titles, continuing to support the ‘games as a service’ format. This format allows the one-time purchase of a game to be a gatekeeping tool to online communities.
Another side of the gaming fandom, the fighting game community, has also seen rapid growth in popularity. ‘Street Fighter V,’ ‘Tekken 7’ and ‘Dragon Ball FighterZ’ all continually receive updates, balance patches and community support, as well as being hugely profitable in the competitive scene.
The popular streaming platform, Twitch, regularly streams the tournaments of these games. Which can pull in hundreds of thousands of viewers from across the planet to watch the spectacle of the best players in the world going head-to-head.
On the opposite side of the gaming spectrum, indie game developers have also seen a huge resurgence. With games like ‘Skullgirls,’ ‘Cuphead,’ ‘Iconoclasts’ and ‘Undertale’ becoming household names with fandoms that often surpass those of the AAA titles. However, with all of this in mind, what exactly does it mean when people talk about the growth that the gaming industry has undergone?
I intend to write a series of articles across the next couple semesters which I have tentatively named ‘Bonus Stage’ due to a shortage of generic video game related terms. In these segments, I plan to explore this growth and cover topics of interest to those who are already part of, or have some interest in the gaming community.
I’ll be talking about upcoming game releases, continuing competitive seasons and the development cycles that independent creators must go through in order to get their games finished and published. I’ll be writing about the on-campus Gaming Institute, exploring a few of the more local events and potentially interviewing some content creators as well.