Modern-day entertainment has undergone a paradigm shift thanks to the technological advances that have been made over the past few decades. Gaming, in particular, has been revolutionized by the integration of innovative tech to the point where it is now one of the most robust big tech industries in the world today.
Here in the 21st century, much of the gaming experience is carried out in virtual environments, which simply wouldn’t exist without the technological advances that have been emerging since the year 2000. The relationship between gaming and technology is now so strong that gaming often provides the blueprint for tech integration and advancement for other industries.
The Current Gaming Landscape
The gaming industry currently stands as the world’s most popular form of home entertainment, reaching an estimated 3.2 billion people and generating $197 billion in revenues in the process. While technology has always played a pivotal role in the success of gaming, when we look at the current gaming landscape, it’s more apparent than ever just how impactful it’s become.
The early days of gaming were characterized by a limited number of platforms, gaming genres, and development companies. Modern gaming, on the other hand, is built up of several different platforms, from console to mobile, vast gaming genres, and a vibrant business ecosystem that’s home to indie developers and global entities alike.
Gamers are constantly on the lookout for new and immersive ways to play games, which encourages the industry itself to take a responsive, fluid approach to innovation. As for games themselves, it’s not always the new-to-the-market titles that pull in the biggest audiences; there’s as much of an appetite for digitalized versions of classic games as there is for new ones.
Take the iGaming sector as an example. Digital versions of casino games may not immediately stand out as a genre worth billions, especially since brick-and-mortar casinos are still commonplace across the world. However, every day, thousands of players in the US, Canada, Europe, and Asia log on to platforms like PokerStars Casino to play modernized variants of classics like blackjack.
A Landmark Year for Gaming
This focus on providing gamers with fresh gaming experiences has meant that, on reflection, 2022 has been a landmark year for gaming tech – and that’s des[ote the fact that we’ve been in the peripheral-heavy period that always follows a major console launch.
Gaming manufacturers have instead been concentrating on rolling out contemporary approaches to play, which encompass accessibility and portability. These devices incorporate new tech advancements, such as cloud gaming, but also include portables that transform the PC gaming experience.
Panic paid homage to the original Nintendo GameBoy with its banana-yellow Playdate. A handheld video gaming console that fits into the palm of your hand, on the surface, it seems the antithesis of modern gaming: limited graphics capabilities and mechanical crank control aren’t exactly in tune with the hyper-real, ergonomic gaming experiences of 2022. However, this limitation has led to genuine innovation on the part of its developers, who have created ingenious games like Pick Pack Pup and Hype Meteor to tap into the hypercasual trend.
2022 was also the year that the much-anticipated Steam Deck hit the market. Valve promised to liberate PC gamers from the restrictions of gaming on a desktop, such as the lack of portability and the expense of purchasing gaming rigs, and it certainly didn’t disappoint.
Valve’s answer to the Nintendo Switch is a portable PC, utilizing a Linux browser to enable gamers to access their full Steam libraries, even on the go. Furthermore, Steam Deck delivers a level of customization that matches what you would expect on a traditional PC, ensuring that players can run different settings for each and every game they play.
While no innovation is without its flaws, and Steam Deck has several quirks that will no doubt be fixed in its next iteration, it is nevertheless having a transformative effect on how PC gamers play their favorite titles.