The technological revolution has not only changed the face of entertainment, it’s also enabling people to carve out more leisure time in their daily routines. Where once people would have had limited options to pass the time, there now exists an entire world of on-the-go entertainment allowing people to maximize their downtime.
Gaming has undergone a complete transformation over the last few decades. Although the first computer games started to be developed in the 1950s and 60s, it wasn’t until the 1980s that they became a legitimate option for those without significant resources.
When the first games moved from the physical to the digital, they created a sensation amongst tech lovers and gaming fans. Players of all ages were so keen to play these new games that a global market was established almost overnight.
The evolution of computer gaming accelerated, going from early console games with basic graphics and a limited number of games, to handheld consoles with color screens and home PCs loading games from tapes. Gaming became a hugely popular pastime, with arcade games becoming a standard addition to many entertainment venues.
The technological transition
Early gamers were not only overjoyed by the new options available to them, especially those who had been enjoying the basic games such as Pong and Space Invaders. It wasn’t long before such games had evolved, with developers including elements of storytelling and long-term game goals in games such as Pac Man.
It wasn’t long before the earliest consoles from Atari and Commodore had been surpassed by PCs, but they came back in a big way when Nintendo and Sega began to produce hand-held games and the next generation of console games that could be plugged into televisions. Gaming became a more sociable pastime, with gamers playing together to share and compare their favorite games.
As well as new games, many providers realized that there was a market for existing games in digital form. In fact, some of the earliest online games were digital versions of popular favorites.
The rise of mobile gaming
Mobile gaming followed a similar trajectory to digital gaming. Early cellphones included relatively simple, minimalist games such as ‘Snake’, with simple graphics, straightforward game play and basic controls.
As mobile technology evolved, so did the games available and cellphones quickly became a popular source of entertainment, as well as providing a means for communication. They became ubiquitous, with 3.5 billion smart phone users in the world by 2020.
Mobile gaming has become a huge market, and designers and developers have adapted the way they create games to adapt to the needs of those gaming on the go. There are many factors to be considered when designing a game for use on a mobile device, including:
- Smaller screen size
- Lower resolution graphics
- On-screen controls
- Lack of privacy
- Shorter (but more frequent) playing times
These factors have all contributed to the development of apps specifically for the mobile gaming market, rather than mobile adaptations of PC games. For an industry worth nearly $160 billion, it pays to consider how and when mobile gamers are playing when designing games.
Transforming old favorites
As well as games designed specifically for the mobile market, many of the most popular offline games have been transformed digitally. As well as family favorites such as Scrabble and Monopoly, many of the favored games played in casinos were already being digitized, including video bingo and slots.
As technology became more advanced, all the most popular games found in bricks-and-mortar casinos were transformed. Now, players can expect all the games at an online casino to have had the same treatment as other long-term favorites as they have all been optimized for mobile gamers.
Some of the main ways that developers make their games suitable for the mobile market include:
- Simplifying gaming controls that accommodate those playing one-handed, or with minimal space
- Offering shorter games, suitable for those enjoying a game on a short break or during their commute
- Offering options to save progress and return to the game without time-consuming loading screens
- Optimizing the settings to allow players to customize their mobile gaming experience
- Offering a wide range of payment options, where relevant, to allow mobile gamers to choose their preferred secure method of depositing funds.
Many of these features lend themselves to the old favorites as the game play is often relatively quick and can be adapted to ensure that mobile gamers get the full experience. From simple versions of popular classics, such as roulette and slots, to more involved options such as themed games and bonus extras, the choice of games available means that there is something to suit every player and gaming occasion.
Mobile players can still enjoy all the social aspects of going to a casino as well, playing with friends either online or in person and sharing their tips and advice as well as celebrating their wins together.
From hardcore gamers that have the latest cellphone and accessories to play whenever they want, to those who just want something fun to do in their downtime, mobile gaming offers a variety of options. With nearly a million games available in online app stores, everyone can find the perfect way to brighten up the otherwise boring moments of their day.