The mobile gaming market has become the dominant segment of the global games industry, both in terms of the number of players and revenue generated. From the long-established markets in Western Europe to the growing scene in India, these portable devices have revolutionised gaming with new forms of games and new ways for existing forms of gaming to reach a wider audience.
In mobile’s ride to the top, three key innovations helped mobile to establish itself, increase its appeal, and then blend with the rest of the global gaming scene.
Utilising popular brands to introduce free mobile gaming
The fact that the majority of mobile games have been free for over a decade has been a significant part of the sector’s appeal to mobile users. However, in its infancy, free mobile game developers needed to make themselves appealing to potential gamers who saw mobile games as grossly inferior products. So, they attained licenses for the biggest brands in entertainment to make games that were instantly appealing to the masses.
Middle-earth, Futurama, Jurassic World, Star Wars, Marvel, Family Guy, and The Simpsons all had licensed mobile games of a similar freemium format. Being such colossal brands, millions of people were more than happy to immerse themselves in the early, rather shallow mobile games for much longer than they perhaps would have without the brand identification, and pay into them regularly. These games helped to get gamers acclimated to the freemium format before the likes of Clash of Clans, Candy Crush, and Angry Birds could establish themselves as major brands.
Bringing recognised gaming to the gamer on the go
One of the most intriguing aspects of mobile gaming is the ability of savvy developers to take vast selections of gaming options and put them into one mobile-optimised platform that any smartphone can access. One of the clearest examples of this in Indian gaming is at Genesis Casino, where its mobile offering features hundreds of games that span its real-time live table games and most popular slot games, like Gonzo’s Quest Megaways, Dragon’s Luck, and Twin Spin.
Going further back, the hundreds of table and slot games available on the mobile platform actually marks the conclusion of making casino games as a whole accessible to the masses. With its online platform hosting more games than an average land-based casino floor, casino gaming was already made quite accessible. Now, it’s all bundled onto the mobile platform and is playable on the go. Similarly, other games once restricted to PCs and consoles have now found a home on mobiles, as shown by Tech Radar, such as PUBG, Minecraft, and older Grand Theft Auto titles.
Blending mobile gaming with console and computer gaming
Primarily because of the prevalent freemium format of mobile games and many mobile developers seeking to create casual games, those who play console and computer games often look down on the mobile scene. That’s all beginning to change now, with games establishing cross-play functionality – where players on consoles and PCs play alongside mobile gamers online. Most recently, it was announced that the upcoming competitive Pokémon Unite game would feature cross-play between the Nintendo Switch and mobile devices, per VG 24/7.
More and more games are featuring this access to cross-platform competition, with the likes of Fortnite, Minecraft, and Brawlhalla, according to PC GamesN, enabling their whole player base to play together regardless of the device used. Bringing the separated gaming communities together to compete on the same battlefield helps to legitimise the mobile platform further. With more gamers respecting mobile and playing the same games on the go as they would on more specialised hardware, the platform will grow in popularity.
By popularising the new form of gaming with the help of recognisable brands, bringing massive offerings found elsewhere in the world of gaming, and then merging other platforms with mobile players, smartphones have become the go-to way for millions, if not billions, of people to enjoy gaming.