A recent end-of-year round-up from gaming industry experts confirms that mobile is consolidating its hold – plus a few other trends.
At the end of 2016 a major gaming site asked a number of industry leaders what they thought was coming down the track. It’s worth a read anyway, but the developing trends are worth bearing in mind as the sector continues to shift – and with it, the opportunities offered by GameCredits’ suite of technologies and products, which include not just the GAME currency but the coming mobile app and game store.
Mobile gaming was a theme that cropped up again and again: it’s safe to say that mobile will take a larger proportion of revenues (something GameCredits fully appreciates and is seeking to capitalise upon). ‘Mobile gaming will reach $40 billion in worldwide revenues… Nintendo will manage to normalize a higher price point for mobile games as audiences look for higher quality content, allowing others to follow the example,’ comments SuperData’s Joost van Dreunen – something broadly echoed by the others.
VR is a bit of a mixed bag, with uncertain expectations. Although many are still positive about its future, consensus is that 2017 is probably not the breakthrough year for VR, and that there may even be a bit of a backlash – a little like crypto, the hype overtook the reality and the market got ahead of itself. ‘The consumer VR sector will enter a period of self-reflection as commercial realisation sets in and I think that will hit us more forcefully in 2017. I expect a lot of negative news stories to swirl around the sector; meanwhile installed bases will continue to grow steadily and things will look more positive at the end of 2017,’ says Piers Harding-Rolls of IHS Markit.
eSports will continue to grow – again, there’s disagreement about whether that will be a big step forward or just an incremental change in 2017, but the direction of travel is clear. Nintendo also receives multiple mentions, with a ‘crunch year’ coming for the giant.
Interestingly, Kantan Games’ Serkan Toto sees growing support for HTML5 in the context of the big players’ monopoly on the market. ‘Facebook started Instant Games in beta in 2016, and I think the company will try to emancipate itself from Apple and Google by increasing its support of HTML5 games. This particular industry is further ahead in other, massive gaming markets such as China and Japan, and I believe 2017 could be the year HTML5 gaming breaks into the mainstream in the West, too.’
There’s very little mention of indie game developers, and nothing at all about cryptocurrency: the industry has apparently not yet put the pieces together. Hopefully this will have changed by the time we’re ready for 2018’s predictions.