Each year, we witness the emergence of new and recurring trends in the gaming industry. Next year, 2022, will be no different — except this time, expect things to be a bit more interesting than the rise of augmented reality game development back in 2016, thanks to Pokémon GO.
Because in 2022, aside from AR gaming, we will start seeing the likes of virtual and blockchain-based gaming take over the market. Perhaps not as fast or prevalent as current forms of gaming — mobile games continue to flourish — but these somewhat novel forms of entertainment will have their fair share of interest among gamers in the near future.
So be in the know, stay in the game. Read the top gaming industry trends you can expect in the coming year. If you play your cards right, your video game might end up becoming the next big hit.
Trends in the Gaming Industry to Keep an Eye Out for in 2022
The popularity of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) boomed in 2021, so don’t be surprised when game studios begin to capitalize on this gaming industry trend. As we explained in a previous blog post, an NFT is a unique digital asset that can’t be replaced.
An example of NFT in gaming is Louis Vuitton’s recently released mobile game. The NFTs there are meant to be appreciated in-game only. However, the rise of NFTs also led to the prevalence of the play-to-earn model in gaming.
For instance, Axie Infinity (2018) enables players to earn by exchanging in-game tokens and characters called Axies for real-world money. As this is relatively new, it’s interesting to see other similar ways NFTs will be implemented in games next year.
Virtual reality games are certainly nothing new. But recently, it’s been getting some attention because of a certain social networking giant’s promises.
If you haven’t heard yet, Mark Zuckerberg has unveiled this year Meta’s (formerly Facebook) plans to build a virtual world known as the metaverse. In the metaverse, users can supposedly socialize and play.
Play is a huge part of this virtual world and some of the games that the company envisions involve a blend of both activities. The likes of Microsoft are also hoping to cash in on this emerging trend, but Meta so far has generated the greatest buzz.
In a video shown during the Facebook Connect conference in October this year, Zuckerberg pitches an interactive world where users, through avatars, can gather and do activities together like creating art and playing games.
While there’s still no announcement regarding when the full-fledged metaverse is set to launch, Meta seems to plan on gradually releasing glimpses of its vision.
Our need to get together during the pandemic, albeit virtually, sparked our interest in games like the Unity-made Among Us and Fall Guys. Games that, no less, enable and encourage human interaction. And despite restrictions gradually easing, we’ll likely see them stick around in the next few years.
These social games, however, have already been prevalent way before COVID-19 hit. In other words, they never went out of style.
But David Kleeman, senior VP of game studio Dubit, said while social games were “happening pre-pandemic”, they “exploded during restrictions,” Yahoo reports.
And with the help of chat and call platforms like Discord, the experience of social gaming can truly feel like a party that’s sure to last.
Gaming Industry Trends Here to Stay in 2022
Just like social games, mobile games have experienced massive growth since the start of the pandemic. A 2021 study even predicts 75% of the pandemic-driven growth in mobile gaming will stay in the next two years.
Another report bolsters this prediction, forecasting the revenue growth of mobile games to reach $90.7 billion in 2024. If there was a good time to start considering mobile game development for your business, it would be today.
Augmented Reality Gaming
Accessibility boosts a game’s ability to expand its reach and is the reason why mobile games continue to be profitable. So in 2022, we’ll easily see augmented reality gaming as one of the biggest trends in the industry that’s bound to keep thriving, even in the succeeding years.
Given how AR works, which incorporates a combination of GPS, cameras, and sensors, you can see why our smartphones are the best devices for this particular technology.
And because the demand for highly entertaining mobile games trend upward every year, it’s only a matter of time before someone releases the best mobile-based AR game of 2022.
High-fidelity Mobile & Video Games
Mobile games are the mainstay of the gaming industry; however, one of the rising trends this coming year is high-resolution mobile games. Think Call of Duty Mobile (2019) and Genshin Impact (2020). You may not be playing them on OLED TVs, but the graphics are just as breathtaking on mobile.
Fun fact: Did you know Genshin Impact is a product of Unity game development? Unity is one of the best C# engines for building games across platforms, according to one of NarraSoft’s Unity developers. Interested to learn more? Contact us today!
While console and PC devices are bound to see a spate of buzz-worthy AAA titles like Resident Evil Village in May this year, mobile devices are quickly catching on to the trend.
Other Trends in the Gaming Industry
eSports: The popularity of eSports, a type of gaming that involves competing against other gamers, is likely to trend upwards in the next few years. Statista predicts this sector’s global revenue to reach more than $1.6 billion in 2024. And with over 200 million eSports enthusiasts keeping tabs on tournaments worldwide, the sector’s growth could even be larger.
Playthroughs & livestreams: Years after the early 2010s, when video sharing and streaming platforms like YouTube were new to the scene, the market for gaming videos has rapidly grown into something worth billions of dollars. We’ll see this sector’s trajectory steadily climb in the years to come.
The trends in the gaming industry you should watch out for in 2022 are:
- Virtual games
- Social games
Industry trends to persist in 2022 include:
- Mobile games
- Augmented reality games
- High-fidelity mobile and video games
Take advantage of these insights by partnering with some of the best game developers! At NarraSoft, we can help you build mobile games, video games, augmented reality assets, and more.
Don’t hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or send a message our way using our chat box or contact form. We’ll bring your game to the next level!