Improvements in graphics quality, streaming facilities and communication options have helped to improve the immersive experience of gaming in recent years.
The overall amalgamation of these technological advancements has led to improved interaction between players, hosts, streamers, and viewers in an online gaming scenario.
How Has Technology Helped to Improve Interaction Between Players in Online Games?
It could be argued that gaming has always been heading this way, and greater developments in the future will make the sociability aspect of it even better.
Gaming Has Always Been a Communal Experience
Ever since the early days of gaming, part of its appeal has been the communal experience. Indeed, the golden age of arcade games during the 1980s helped give gaming a platform for the success it went on to achieve. In those days, players would get together in arcade halls and compete for high scores in games like Space Invaders and Pac-Man.
There was a period during which gaming became a solo activity, especially when popular early consoles like the Super Nintendo Entertainment System spread to households all over the world in the 1990s.
Many games did have multiplayer features and the opportunity to compete for high scores, but players had to invite people to their homes to play in a social setting.
Since that time, console and game developers have worked towards improving the social side of gaming and the internet has helped a lot with this.
When the internet started to enjoy widespread usage throughout the 2000s, one of the first things to happen to games was the introduction of online multiplayer elements.
Certain successful franchises have based their whole success on their online competition and collaboration, with the Call of Duty series being a prime example. The rise of eSports to becoming a $1.08 billion market in 2021 was born from this in-game sociability that the internet provided.
Interaction in Real Time through Live Streaming
Nowadays, it seems crazy to think there was a time when players were unable to interact with one another in online scenarios. Major leaps forward in the equipment that players have at their disposal has added to the greater immersion that faster internet speeds have provided.
Players can use their comms devices to stay in touch with each other in real-time, and this can lead to coordinated attacks in collaborative games.
There is also the opportunity to chat and converse with people when playing games like FIFA, and it can make players feel as though they are in the same room as each other.
Live streaming has been almost as ground-breaking as the internet was for the gaming industry. It’s one of the most popular platforms in the world right now, but it all began with the online casino sector.
Operators and developers wanted to recreate the feeling of sitting across from a dealer in a casino and introduced live streaming for this purpose.
Live dealer casinos are now one of the most popular ways of playing, and this genre is helping the industry break into growing markets like the Middle East. Players in Arab countries now have a variety of options to choose from, each with bonuses and loyalty programs.
Live streaming allows for real-time interaction, and players can communicate with dealers. This has also been a revelation on channels like Twitch as well, which relies on human interaction as part of its unique selling point.
Building Fanbases and Networking
Twitch has been one of the main catalysts for the eSports industry, thanks to the high levels of viewer engagement that the channel can achieve. Streamers build enormous fanbases by producing content that encourages interaction.
For example, loud_coringa has 2.27 million followers on the platform, mainly through playing GTA V and inspiring discussion while he plays. Viewers aren’t in control, but they can feel as though they have an input on the outcome.
Many players online even use gaming as a way of networking. This is especially apparent in MMORPGs like World of Warcraft. Indeed, some people, such as Amanda and Jeremy from Illinois, even found true love by playing the game. This wouldn’t be possible without the seamless technology that makes these games’ social functions so popular.
It’s amazing to think how far the interactivity of gaming has come in a few short decades, but there’s no chance of it stopping yet. Innovations like virtual reality should make it more sociable in the years ahead, where we could be looking at a Ready Player One-style Oasis scenario.