Twelve months have passed, and we’ve seen a lot of strong and exciting developments during this period Yet, if we’re lucky, the next twelve will hold innovations just as exciting!
Other than the Christmas food, New Year parties, and NetFlix cramming new releases on to their platform, the best thing about the end of the year is the potential for the next.
We’ve been thinking hard about what could be coming up - in particular, what the video gaming trends in 2019 are likely to be. Our research has seen us come up with three key areas to look out for:
Let’s take a better look.
There are significant advancements being made when it comes to VR (virtual reality) gaming in 2019. One majorly exciting new angle for VR is its continued expansion into the multiplayer games market. Where we formally had LAN parties, we now have super-immersive VR multiplayer games with hangout lobbies.
Consider, for example, the popular Star Trek: Bridge Crew. This 2017 four-player cooperative game from Ubisoft capitalised on the need for communication between players and incorporated this as a key feature of the game mechanics. Each player was allocated a role (captain, tactical officer, engineer and helm officer), and the mission tasks were distributed between the players.
Each player was responsible for carrying out their tasks, but also relaying all the information back to the captain. The captain, ultimately, manages all the other players and leads the crew to victory. We expect that, with recent developments, similar games will be released in 2019 but with larger numbers of players, and with players across the network (rather than across the room).
One of the most recent multiplayer VR titles came from Oculus’ Echo Arena series, namely Echo Combat. This last year has seen the release of the open beta for Echo Combat, which builds upon Ready at Dawn’s Echo Arena and Lone Echo. These two hugely popular VR multiplayer games allow you to battle (in zero-gravity with firearms) over the network.
As you can expect, these types of creations have gone down a treat - so more popular games such as these are very much expected for the year ahead. However, that’s not the only area Oculus are eyeing up, with a move into eSports set for 2019...
eSports has gone from strength to strength over the last few years. Gamers have been scrambling to get recognition for their League of Legends play by establishing themselves with one of the main eSports titles. Ticket sales for live events have seen numbers that surpass many of their ‘real world’ rivals, while even some of the world’s biggest boxing promoters are beginning to promote eSports too. This upward trajectory won’t slow any time soon, and 2019 will see some exciting stuff because of this.
Oculus in particular are expanding their catalogue by moving into eSports. Over the last year, Oculus have slowly begun hosting tournaments for their Echo Arena games, and specifically have been hosting Echo Combat tournaments. As of yet, they’re only weekend-long play-offs - but soon we can expect more regular and sustained gameplay.
A much less reported trend for 2019 revolves around the casino gaming world - and how it’s starting to take cues from video games. Previously, online casino players would spin the automated reels without any influence on the result whatsoever. Yet, with younger casino fans demanding more gameplay, this has forced developers into action.
At first, a lot more gamification was implemented - with bonuses and other rewards given for player progress. Then, VR casinos and slot games were launched to capture the virtual magic. It’s been reported that VR in gambling could be worth up to $520bn in just a few short years.
Max Quest: where no man has gone before
However, the late-2018 release of Max Quest by Betsoft could well be the launchpad for online casino gaming changing forever! That’s because Max Quest has gone where no one else has before - by incorporating actual player skill into proceedings. Armed with guns and weapons that can be upgraded, you shoot down enemies for the chance to earn wins - marking a totally different way to gamble.
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This revolutionary step has been hailed by all and sundry in casino - both online and offline. Therefore, it’s highly expected that both Betsoft and their competitors will shift focus to this kind of interactive casino gameplay for 2019 to match player expectations.
We think it’s going to be a very good year...!
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