It’s hard to escape the casual gaming revolution. Thanks to a wave of momentum initiated by the internet, more people are playing a more diverse range of games than ever before.
If you wind back the clock just a couple of decades, gaming was still a relatively niche market. That’s not to say it wasn’t lucrative for all concerned, it was. However, the idea of gaming and, in turn, gamers was something relatively geeky. Of course, today, the image of reclusive types hauled up in their rooms playing “hardcore” video games still persists. But, and this is a big but, they’re no longer the only players in town.
More Games, More Influence
Casual gaming has literally changed the game. Now, those seeking a dose of entertainment can download more than 903,000 games from the Apple App Store. Add to this a comparative number of options inside Google Play and gamers now have access to more options than ever.
Naturally, this has resulted in a sharp spike in revenue for developers. In the US alone, the casual/social gaming market is worth $1.6 billion. As impressive as that stat is, it doesn’t tell the whole story. Yes, casual games stand alone. For example, many of the fan-voted Best of 2019 award winners exemplify what the genre is now capable of.
Far from basic games made to fit that latest mobile device, products like hidden object games for mobile are epic tales with stunning graphics and storylines that stretch over multiple instalments. However, casual gaming is more than a standalone entity. Alongside its internal innovations, the industry’s culture has started to influence other realms.
The most obvious is casino gaming. Itself a burgeoning entity, online casino gaming has borrowed a variety of ideas from its casual counterpart. Nowhere is this more obvious than the slots arena.
The Casual Vibe is Everywhere
Scroll through the VegasSlotsOnline overview of today’s top titles and you’ll find a lot more than fruits and bars. Indeed, modern creations such as Zeus and Invaders from the Planet Moolah take a classic concept and make it more engaging than before. From the days of mechanical reels and a few basic symbols, today’s slot machines now feature animations, bonuses and even mini-games. For example, slots within the Batman series feature onscreen fights as well as bonus rounds where you have to shoot down objects to win prizes. These innovations are a direct result of the rise of social gaming.
It’s a similar story in other parts of the industry. Twitch has not only become a major hub for streaming but a revenue stream for players. Although video games like Call of Duty and still dominate, casual games are starting to make their mark. Streamers such as DarthMaulBRTV are now attracting thousands of followers by playing casual hits like Mother Russia Bleeds. Adestriador_ is doing the same with his streams of Island Saver.
The casual streaming revolution may be the best example of how the genre has blossomed in recent years. When games go from an active to a passive form of entertainment, they cross a barrier. In addition to being something people play, casual games have become something people are willing to watch. Of course, the players hosting the stream need to be entertaining. However, that’s true of any video content.
The main point to note here is that the move into streaming is significant. What’s more, it’s another example of how it’s now an important part of the “gaming” industry as a whole. Whichever angle you come at it from, casual gaming is a proverbial beast and has proved to be the chosen form of entertainment for people during unprecedented times. Not only has it become a powerhouse in its own right, it’s now influencing other parts of the industry. With links established and synergy the order of the day, casual gaming is only set to become bigger and better. That, in turn, means more action and entertainment for everyone.