The gaming industry is rising like a phoenix from the ashes of the pandemic, leaving other forms of entertainment in the rubble of 2020.
It has been a tough year for many industries, as COVID-19 emptied the casinos, concert halls, bars, and other real-world entertainment venues. But as 2020 has been a bust for many industries, the year has been a financial boon for online gaming, as consumers look to spend their money and their free time from the comfort and safety of home. Mobile gaming is expected to capture $77.2 billion in revenue this year, according to Reuters, leaping 13.3 percent over 2019.
To grab a share of the revenue, though, online gaming companies must be innovative enough to attract the attention of the 2.7 billion total gamers out there. This year, some found innovation within their own game categories, such as first person shooter, online casino games, arcade games, sports games, action and adventure games, board games, and massively multiplayer online games (MMOGs or MMOs).
For example, Roblox built a platform that not only allows users to play their favorite games, such as Jailbreak and MeepCity, but to develop their own games. In just the past year, Roblox has introduced a variety of tools for their 2+ million developers, such as a translation feature that allows them to publish game titles in different languages and an upgrade that allows up to 800 simultaneous players on a server. In 2019, developers earned about $100 million in revenue through in-game upgrades and virtual goods.
Apple Arcade offered users unlimited access to more than 100 games on their iPhone, Mac, iPad, and Apple TVs for only $5 a month. While offering customers a great deal is not necessarily groundbreaking, finding new ways to make money on products they already sold is. Another power player, Minecraft Earth, brought their popular augmented reality mobile game into the real world. Users can hook up with other crafters to create small-scale masterpieces, and then take their builds into the real world.
Other online games, like Level Ex and Zwift, ventured outside their categorical comfort zones. Level Ex allows doctors to put their clinical skills to the test while earning the continuing medical education (CME) credits they need to practice. Zwift sets itself apart from Pelaton, which provides run-of-the-mill online spin classes, by turning the user’s stationary bike into a video game controller in a way that allows gamers to compete against other cyclists in massive online races.
What 2021 has in Store for Gamers
Next year’s trends will likely involve virtual reality, augmented reality, cloud gaming, artificial intelligence, mobile gambling, and different payment options, but in ways we have never seen before.
Technologically advanced gadgets will help make online gaming even more interactive and immersive. Oculus Quest 2 offers next-level hardware and redesigned controllers that are easy to set up and PC VR compatible. Some companies are looking to make their products more affordable – Google’s Cardboard VR headset is an inexpensive way to experience virtual reality on a smartphone, for example.
WinQuik looks like it will make great gains before the end of the year. The creator of WinQuik, ClickStream, made a November 2020 announcement that they were entering Phase Two of its business plan by launching a mobile marketing campaign. The ads, featuring Pooch Hall and Amber Theoharis, will appear on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and other digital platforms. The online trivia gaming platform looks towards a rosy future in 2021. ClickStream also recently announced that, in the first four weeks after its launch, more than 21,000 1-vs-1 challenges have been played on the trivia gaming platform; nearly 2500 participants were repeat players. The company predicts the number of 1-vs-1 challenges in the platform’s first month will outpace early estimates by a long shot.
Some companies are innovating how they deliver existing games to new audiences. Rush Street Interactive (RSI) is one of the fastest-growing online casino gaming companies because of its innovative approaches to creating and operating online gaming products and social casino sites that offer real money prizes. RSI has recently announced its partnership with NetEnt Group, becoming the first online casino operator in the US to premier some of Red Tiger’s most popular titles, such as Gonzo’s Quest™ MegaWays™ and Cash Volt.
Other companies are providing immersive experiences for gamers. For example, Hopa Canada New Online Casino now offers the award-winning augmented reality game, Monopoly Live, which mixes video game graphics with real-life interactions with real-life dealers to gives gamers the feeling they are playing in a casino. A few companies are collecting data to help them gain a better understanding of what gamers will want in the future.
While it is hard to know exactly what 2021 will bring, it is fairly easy to predict that online gaming will become even more popular in the upcoming year. Companies brave enough to think outside the box will likely attract the most attention (and money) with innovative hardware, expanded platforms, and ingenious advertising approaches.
Frank Magliochetti owes his professional success to his expertise in two areas: medicine and finance. After obtaining a BS in pharmacy from Northeastern University, he stayed on to enroll in the Masters of Toxicology program. He later specialized in corporate finance, receiving an MBA from The Sawyer School of Business at Suffolk University. His educational background includes completion of the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School and the General Management Program at Stanford Business School. Frank Magliochetti has held senior positions at Baxter International, Kontron Instruments, Haemonetics Corporation, and Sandoz. Since 2000, he has been a managing partner at Parcae Capital, where he focuses on financial restructuring and interim management services for companies in the healthcare, media, and alternative energy industries. Last year, he was appointed chairman of the board at Grace Health Technology, a company providing an enterprise solution for the laboratory environment. Frank is also CEO of ClickStream, ClickStream’s business operations are focused on the development and implementation of WinQuik™, a free to play synchronized mobile app and digital gaming platform. The platform is designed to enable WinQuik™ users to have fun, interact and compete against each other in order to win real money and prizes. Twitter at @ClickstreamC and @WinQuikApp.
Frank was appointed Chairman and Chief Executive Officer at Designer Genomics International, Inc. The Company has accumulated a growing body of evidence that highlights a link between alterations in the immune and inflammatory systems and the development of chronic human disease. The Company is visionary and has established itself as a leader in the field of inflammatory and immune genetic DNA and RNA biomarkers that play a causative role in debilitating conditions, such as atherosclerosis/heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD) and cancer.
A proprietary state-of-the art data mining bioinformatics program, called ‘cluster analysis’ will be used to measure disease development susceptibility with potential for earlier diagnosis and intervention. The company is developing a healthcare program based on its proprietary genetic panels that will allow people to be their own healthcare advocate and take an active role in their health status as well as longevity.