3 trends that are transforming the video game market

These trends have appeared and you need to pay attention to them no matter what industry you are in.

Image: iStockphoto / gorodenkoff

Over the past year and a half, Forrester has grown its coverage of the video game market, particularly on how companies can model their strategies to take advantage of innovation. From this research, three trends emerged that you need to pay attention to, no matter what industry you are in.

  1. How the software is made. More and more, we are seeing games made up of pre-made parts as opposed to custom code. This trend has continued over the past decade, but we are starting to reach another inflection point. While a few major games still leverage proprietary game engines, Unreal Engine and Unity have become the industry standard, simplifying game development. Game developers in mobile and traditional gaming spaces have started leveraging more pre-made modules (both open source and proprietary) provided by cloud players (AWS, Azure, and GCP all have offerings) and specialist vendors. (such as Beamable) – some of these services include cross-platform player identity management, DDoS protection, and even matchmaking capabilities. While there is still work to be done to integrate developer workflows and create compelling financial models, we will see increasing adoption of this development model. At the end of the day, what software developers really want to do is create software and create engaging experiences – they don’t want to spend time redeveloping engines.
  2. How the software is delivered. Specifically, it means where the games are running. With game streaming (Xbox Cloud Gaming, Stadia, Luna, PS Now, etc.), cloud streaming platforms allow gamers to drive previously hardware-driven experiences anywhere, blurring the lines between mobile experiences. and console / PC. Game streaming still faces many challenges, but over the next five years we expect continued investment in game library breadth and performance. This will have downstream effects on adjacent technologies, such as VDI (virtual desktops) and edge applications. A particularly interesting example of this comes from Microsoft, with Game Cloud and Xbox Game Pass delivering near-console quality experiences through web browsers, allowing flexibility in terms of game streaming source, even allowing users to use a local Xbox as a streaming source. Coupled with emerging technologies such as NVIDIA DLSS (AI Driven Resolution Enhancement), this flexibility in streaming sources opens up new possibilities for distributed execution and rendering. Lessons learned from these low latency experiences can be applied to make high performance virtual work accessible anywhere.
  3. How software ecosystems develop. Games as a service evolve into games as a platform. Over the past decade, games have pioneered and refined a “free to use” or “free to play” model of gaming into a “games as a service” model: an initial version of a game. is published and then continuously updated at a routine rate. Now, however, game developers have realized the value of a parallel ecosystem – player-developed content. The best example today is Roblox: in 15 years, it has created a developer-friendly ecosystem in which creators of custom content can formalize their offerings for monetary incentives, and other developers are looking to take advantage of that wheel. inertia of underutilized content / value creation. Xbox announced support for the concept at E3 2021, and we’re starting to see new examples of AAA publishers tackling this as well (e.g. Electronics Arts with Battlefield Portal, a code-less engine that allows gamers to create custom game modes and share them).

While enterprise technology is no stranger to the above trends, what is worth following are the adoption and monetization patterns emerging from the gaming industry. As competition from enterprise platforms intensifies, platforms with the most valuable ecosystem and consumer-friendly strategies will find themselves ahead of the competition in face-to-face level reviews. With a market value of over $ 100 billion, the gaming industry has room for the rest of us to experiment.

This article was written by analyst William McKeon-White, and it originally appeared here.

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