Games, which have been played in various forms since the dawn of time, are going through a major evolution like every other aspect of our lives in these digital times. With the appearance of massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs), a new trend was born and it’s still gaining popularity.
At this point, about half of online users participate in online gaming and bigger companies can easily reach more than 2,000,000 subscribers on a global level. You may come to think that the reason for this growing popularity is simply good old escapism combined with boredom. But there are many other things that can draw our attention and promote distraction and escapism, so it’s time to think deeper. These are the 4 true reasons behind the growing popularity of online gaming.
The Endless Circle of Influence
As we’ve said, in some shape or another, games have been here since the dawn of time. This trend is mostly about the online makeover of popular games that have traditionally been played live. It’s nostalgia and so much more - these games are practically in our bloodstream. This is not to say that game history is all about recycling ideas, but it is rather about the endless circle of influence. We can’t deny the fact that all modern roleplaying games have taken inspiration from the tabletop and text-based varieties from the 1970s.
Furthermore, this endless circle of influence has spread across multiple industries. There are famous games with versions to play in online casinos, toy store windows are filled with toys based on the game’s characters, not to mention numerous movie adaptations. To put it simply, modern online gaming is an omnipresent phenomenon that is already an inseparable part of our lives.
A Role to Play
Compared with cinema, modern online games go beyond plain escapism. Now that the concept of the avatar has become mainstream, players not only have an escape route from the real world but also a chance to tailor their identity in the online one. With the freedom to create personalities and entire background stories of their characters from scratch, each player is able to create a certain kind of alter ego in the adventurous gaming landscapes. No soul hasn’t dreamed of becoming a kind of hero, rid of all undesirable features or faults, and online gaming has made those dreams a (virtual) reality.
One Big Family
Going online, the gaming industry removed the need for a location, making distance completely irrelevant. It has become the ultimate point of contact, even for unsociable individuals. But it’s not just the irrelevance of distance that makes the online gaming world one big family – the most important part is that nobody is left out.
Humans are social beings and we all have an urge to belong somewhere. It is not easy to be accepted in social groups in the real world, but the online gaming community accepts everyone, across all ages and genders, defined or otherwise.
This zero prejudice is combined with complete accessibility: high-speed internet has become a common thing in every household, as well as a computer, tablet, or smartphone. The choice of games is almost infinite – sports games, shooting games, word games, casino games, puzzle games, war games, etc. – everyone can find something of interest. Almost every game offers different levels of expertise and customization options are very easy to follow, so they’re suitable for both beginners and experienced players. Last but not least, online games generally cost more than half as much as those for gaming consoles, and numerous are available free to download.
New challenges set before us are important parts of our lives since handling them creates a sense of achievement that builds our independence and self-confidence. Facing challenges in real life can be daunting, but in the online gaming world, we always accept them with thrill and enthusiasm. It is a world where the sense of achievement waits around every corner since progressing to different levels of the game takes mastering every step and acquiring different skills on the way. Besides this, there are many online games that are designed to boost our real-life skills such as eye coordination, time management, problem-solving, critical thinking, etc.
As you can see, the world of online gaming is one huge virtual, familiar place drenched in nostalgia which enables us to fulfill our deepest human desires. It is a world where we can be heroes, it is a family where we belong, it is a challenge we’re always ready to accept. This is why the popularity of it will only continue to grow.