Video Game Trends That Are Expected to Break Out in 2023

Video gaming is an ever-increasing industry. Every year, developers produce new technology and ideas to give gamers the best possible gaming experience, and it’s not just that. With more people making games and more coming out for all platforms in the next few years, it’s essential to keep up with video game trends.

Whether you’re a gamer, game developer, or gaming company owner, here are the top gaming industry trends to keep an eye on.

back view of a male playing video game on computer

Video Game Trends That are Set to Take 2023 by Storm

Diversity in Games

As of 2022, there are 3.03 billion gamers around the world. Even though men make up the vast majority of gamers, female gamers already covered 48% of the US gaming population in 2022. So even though it’s not half the population, this gaming industry trend is a big step toward gender equality.

There has also been an increase in female protagonists in recent games, such as Horizon Forbidden West and The Last of Us Part II. The female protagonists of these games are often used as a metaphor for feminism.

Additionally, there are trends in video games that include storylines that represent the LGBT community. For example, some characters in Horizon: Forbidden West are in relationships with people of the same gender. Recently, Valorant’s Facebook page confirmed a canon that two of their female agents are in a relationship. Players of the game had mixed feelings about it but putting it in its official lore is a step forward for how gender is shown in video games.

Finally, more and more women are joining eSports due to the proliferation of female-focused competitions. In the past few years, there have been more and more eSports events for women, such as the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang Women League, Valorant Game Changers, and CSGO Gamers Club Masters Feminina.

Rise of Indie Gaming

Indie games, created by independent game developers, are a familiar trend in the gaming industry. However, new and improved game platforms have made it much easier for indie developers to realize their visions.

Take Roblox as an example. Roblox is a platform that allows for the development and distribution of games at no cost. Additionally, Roblox Studio has child-friendly features that enable even those with no coding experience to make and share their games. Since the service is free and easy to use, it has attracted a large user base of 202 million monthly active users.

Other platforms have also played a role in the rise of independent video games. When it comes to video games, Steam is one example that has facilitated the distribution of many indie games. Popular independent games like Among Us and Stardew Valley that feature 2D video game art directly result from this video game trend.

man and woman Playing a Video Game while wearing virtual reality gears

Extended Reality in Gaming

The continued advancements of “extended reality” are the next video game trend in 2023 that game developers should look out for. Extended reality (XR) is a term for a wide range of immersive technologies that can realistically combine real and virtual worlds. The XR technologies we have today are virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality (MR).

  • Virtual Reality

Since the mid-2010s, VR has become one of the most popular kinds of extended reality influencing current video gaming trends. It is immersive, making players feel like they are in other worlds. VR immerses players in a computer-generated audiovisual environment using a head-mounted display while interacting with it through haptic controllers.

Meta is one of the forerunners in taking virtual reality to the next level. Their Meta Quest VRs are among the popular virtual reality accessories available on the market. Players have also grown accustomed to VR games like Beat Sabers, Resident Evil 7, and Iron Man VR.

  • Augmented Reality

AR combines digital data with elements from the real world. Anyone can experience AR on screens, tablets, and smartphones, AR glasses. Unlike VR, AR users can still talk to each other and look around without being cut off from the rest of the world. Do you remember the hype that Pokémon Go got when it was launched worldwide? This AR game paved the way for more developers to dabble in this extended reality.

What’s great about augmented reality, however, is that gaming isn’t the only industry where developers can follow this trend. Popular social media sites like Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok now have augmented reality filters, which are computer-made effects that you can add to real-life photos or videos. Its increased popularity has led many developers to try out augmented reality content creation.

  • Mixed Reality

Mixed reality combines the digital and physical worlds. In mixed reality, you use advanced sensing and imaging technologies to interact with and manipulate real and virtual objects and settings. With this gaming design trend, you can completely immerse yourself in both worlds without taking off your MR headset. This also lets you see and interact with the real world around you in a whole new way. Microsoft’s HoloLens is an excellent example of an MR device. It enables you to put digital objects in the room you are standing in and move them around or interact with them in any way possible.

hands of male player holding cloud gaming console in front of computer screen

Cloud Gaming

Buying games physically and virtually is part of the gaming experience. However, there are times when it can be a tedious task for gamers. For example, depending on the player’s internet connection, a game’s download could take hours. This can take time out of the player’s gaming time, affecting their gaming experience. Another problem is that some players’ consoles might need more storage to accommodate a new game – a resource that not all gamers have. One of the solutions developers have for this problem is cloud gaming.

Cloud gaming, which lets people play games immediately without downloading, is a growing trend in video games for 2023. It streams video games directly to a user’s device from remote or cloud servers. Also, cloud gaming services offer thousands of games that players can look through and stream instantly to their favorite consoles. You can also get around any hardware restrictions if you access the game from a company server.

The popularity of cloud gaming has also increased sales for gaming companies. Publishers see profits from streaming older games on streaming services like PS Now and Xbox Cloud Gaming. As demand for this grows, it won’t be long before different game streaming platforms compete for users’ attention.

Steam gaming platform dashboard showing many games

Competition Between PC Gaming Platforms

The PC gaming market generates billions worth of revenue. In 2021, the global games market produced $175.8 billion in revenue, and $35.9 billion came from PC gaming. As an additional point, analysts estimate that by 2023, the worldwide gaming market will generate over $200 billion in revenue. A big reason for this trend in the gaming industry is the rise of PC gaming platforms that offer large game libraries.

Before, Steam dominated the gaming market. Launched in 2003, Steam is a digital distribution service for video games. Over 47% of game publishers have their games available on the platform. As a result, the platform became a famous gaming market. It was also one of the earliest hubs where PC gaming enthusiasts could shop, read about, and try out new titles. They have also attracted a large gaming community that gathers online to play games, report bugs, and build mods.

However, Steam’s once-undisputed dominance is beginning to fade. Now, there are a growing number of alternatives to Steam. This video game trend benefits platforms that want to be the top gaming marketplace.

For instance, GOG is a video game marketplace that has set its sights on dethroning Steam. GOG initially focused on older games that were hard to find on Steam, but has since expanded to include retro and modern titles, including blockbuster hits. Other platforms that continue to compete with Steam are Epic Games and Origin. These platforms offer unique titles that are only available in their stores. 

Next Generation Consoles

The gaming industry is constantly developing new technologies, so this trend in video games will always be a big thing. It’s the battle between the next generation of gaming consoles.

In recent years, we’ve seen the release of Sony and Microsoft’s latest consoles: the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X. Gaming giants like them have dominated the video game industry. One of the underlying factors influencing this pattern is the consoles’ role in popularizing cutting-edge video games. Games developed specifically for each console are also made available for purchase. This makes gamers more inclined to buy consoles.

Another reason for this video game trend is the leveling up of the consoles’ features. A good example is the PlayStation 5, which has a high-quality solid-state storage device. Compared to the PS4, there will be much less waiting around for games to load, thanks to this hardware improvement. This vital feature lets game developers create bigger, better, and more detailed games.

PSP CD game of The Last of Us remastered

More Remastered Versions

In the video game industry, developers are beginning to understand that fresh takes on classics are a winning formula. The trend toward producing more remakes and reboots is clearly on the rise. This is because remakes are less likely to fail than entirely new game franchises.

Game remakes aren’t a new trend in the gaming industry, but they do encourage more players to give the game a try because of the updated visuals. Remastered games keep the same plot as the original, but with updated visuals that are more suitable for a different console or player base. Some of the most popular remastered versions these past years were The Last of Us Part 1, Final Fantasy 7, and Crash Bandicoot.

Are you considering a remastering of your games? Narrasoft can help you with that! When it comes to visual design and development, nothing but perfection will do. That’s why we offer meticulous 3D modeling for games from our seasoned experts. With our assistance, you can always be ahead of the trend in the world of video games.

Early-Access Content

The early-access video game trend is a win-win for gamers and developers. For gamers, nothing beats getting their hands on a game months—or even years—before it’s officially released. On the other hand, developers use early access to determine what real players think of their games. Ultimately, a game’s direction can be changed based on the feedback developers receive.

Valorant’s Public Beta Environment (PBE) is an example of this gaming industry trend. The PBE is a server in the game where a limited number of players can test out upcoming game features. The decision to implement the update in the game is contingent upon the responses received from players.

Fortnite game updating on mobile phone screen

Cross-Platform Gaming

With technology improving and more platforms becoming available, cross-platform play becomes possible. Cross-platform features mean that gamers no longer have to stick to the communities on the platform they choose. Instead, players can now play together despite being on different platforms. Some of the most popular cross-platform games are Among Us, Fortnite, and Call of Duty.

Cross-platform play has the potential to be more than just a video game trend and become a permanent part of the gaming world. With this technology, players can now play games previously available only on PCs on mobile devices.

Do you want your game to be available on all platforms, including mobile phones? Narrasoft’s mobile game development outsourcing can assist you in this endeavor! Our cutting-edge game design and development services give you the best experience possible.

Increase in Competitive Gaming

In the past, gaming was perceived as a hobby. Now, the world of eSports is rapidly evolving into a viable career path for many people.

Since its inception, the eSports industry has ballooned in popularity and financial success. Revenue growth is primarily attributed to the number of audiences. But it’s not just because each viewer represents potential revenue. Advertisers also pour money into this gaming industry trend because they know it can help them reach a sizable and enthusiastic demographic.

Furthermore, eSports are gradually gaining legitimacy as a legitimate sport. The International Olympic Committee will hold the first Olympic Esports Week in June 2023. This will be the first time that members of the eSports community will have the Olympic Movement’s support for the development of virtual sports and further engagement with competitive gamers.

Axie Infinity game showing on laptop screen

Play-to-Earn Games

Gamers are now able to win money by playing play-to-earn games. In this gaming industry trend, players can earn real money by completing in-game missions, beating other players, and moving up in levels. The foundation of this model is based on cryptocurrency. It allows gamers to play games in exchange for crypto tokens. Time spent in these games will reward the player with assets that increase in value.

Sponsored Game Streaming Content

Sponsored content is also becoming a more popular trend in video games. Game developers and publishers can pay streamers and content creators to play their games. They get paid by creating content about the game or directly streaming it on their channels. Creators with a sizable online following are likelier to get people to try the game they talk about. They can further expand the reach of their videos by sharing them on social media. Also, content creators with a large fan base can use online community management services to help them share sponsored content with their audience.

Keep Up with the Latest Gaming Industry Trends with Narrasoft

The future of the gaming industry is bright. These are just some video game trends that will continue dominating the gaming industry. As long as technology keeps evolving, the competition to be the best game, gaming console, and game marketplace will never stop.

Got questions about how these gaming trends can help your company? Contact us today, and let us help you get updated with the video game trends in 2023.