As we come out of the pandemic, gaming is in an interesting place. As a whole, the gaming industry did well through the pandemic and lockdowns. As an industry that is capable of working from home as well as a platform and media that can be consumed solo or in small groups, the demand and ability to create was not hurt overall.
Some game companies made changes to their plans, releases, and content in order to support the new normal that we found ourselves in 2021, such as Niantic making changes to their plans to incorporate features that are social distancing and lock-down friendly.
Some trends that are playing out in the game industry cover some interesting areas.
First, how games are consumed has been changing. We have e-sports growing along with spectator-based gaming, either through e-sports and tournaments or through streaming and let’s play-style videos.
Platforms will be a big factor in gaming for 2021. Mobile continues to grow and will be competing with a lot of other gaming platforms through 2021. The new consoles will come into their own through 2021 as well as gaming in Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, and cloud-based gaming. With 5G rollouts from the major carriers, choices of how we game in 2021 will be vast, and we will see gaming as a social media-type platform for interaction.
A development area that should continue to grow is alternate sources to finance games. From crowd sourcing funding models to early access games, developers have a lot of choice in how they bring their games to market. Linking this to digital distribution will continue to support the indie game scene and allow these games to flourish.
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