The gaming industry has changed radically since Tim Berners-Lee created the World Wide Web in 1990. Back then, gaming was a growing niche that attracted different views from people. For some, gamers were antisocial, lazy and unproductive people.
Not anymore: gamers have become superstars who earn more than Pro athletes. They have enormous social media followers, and multiple studies show they are as social as everyone else. Looking back over the years, here’s how the gaming industry transcended into a mainstream culture everyone wants to be associated with.
Raised in the Gaming Era
One of the best features of gaming is that most people don’t outgrow it. Kids who grew up playing video games in the 1990s and the 2000s still play today. And thanks to their commitment, the average gamer in the US is 35 years.
Of course Gen Z, and all generations after them will also grow up playing video games right from a young age. And like most hobbies developed at a young age, gaming will become a part of them throughout their adult lives.
Sure, not every parent allows their kids to play online games. But similar to people who bar their children from watching TV or listening to the radio, it’s a fruitless endeavor. Sooner or later, children grow up and become gamers or TV watchers.
Legitimized by the Media
The media no longer blames video games for all the ills in society. Some networks do, but more and more mass communications platforms have embraced the industry. In fact, most major sports networks, including ESPN and TNT, have programs dedicated to video gaming.
TV show hosts like Ellen and James Corden regularly invite famous video game fans while online media networks are at the forefront of advocating for the industry. Across Hollywood, there have been over 50 movies inspired or based on a video game.
And that’s just video game movies. Films about casinos have been gracing our screens since the 1960s. And while most of them focused on land-based establishments, some of them have also touched on the nascent online casino industry.
Despite the negativity thrown at it, the gaming industry continuously proves it’s a culture as relevant as sports or the music industry. More importantly, it’s shown it’s a legitimate business that can help people build successful careers.
There are more than five ways gaming fans can become millionaires:
- Playing video games at a professional level
- Streaming games on Twitch, YouTube and Facebook
- Selling Gaming Merchandise
- Becoming a gaming influencer
- Playing online casino games
The last method is often underrated despite being a legitimate way to profit from gaming. To put some context, the biggest online casino winner took home over $20 million in 2018. By comparison, the richest professional eSports player has grossed a little over $4 million.
Of course, gambling is luck-based, and eSports involve tremendous skills. But it’s arguably easier to win at slots than at the high levels of professional gaming. Again, it’s also cheaper to play slots as you only need a few cents or dollars.
The best online casinos, as per topslots-canada.com, also allow you to play a few slots free of charge. They do that as a welcome gesture and to help you learn how to play the games before you risk real money.
Online gaming is one of the best things to have happened to the industry. It’s responsible for many of the eSports millionaires and the global gaming culture we have today. Through live gaming, over ten million people can watch, or two players showcase their gaming skills online.
In their free time, fans can play their favourite games against fellow players on the Internet. And thanks to that, gaming has progressed from a solitary past-time to a global lifestyle.
Fortunately, gaming stakeholders have been turning the industry into an established platform that will be around for long. The major games are now franchises that make hundreds of millions per year. Streaming networks provide content 24/7 while innovation ensures games will continue to improve with time.
The Media and Hollywood aren’t the only sectors that regularly promote the gaming culture. Colleges, musicians, athletes and even book authors have embraced the gaming industry—boosting its reputation and elevating its image even higher.
CBS News reports more than a dozen colleges in the US have eSports programs. Some also offer eSports degrees that train teenagers how to play different video games professionally. Besides gaming, colleges like the University of Staffordshire also teach the youngsters the marketing and managerial aspects of eSports.
Celebrities and athletes also love the $1.1 billion industry. From Hip hop artists to rock stars, soccer players to NBA stars; lots of famous people have varying interests in gaming. Drake and Post Malone, for example, appear on the streams of well-known streamers frequently. On the other end, soccer star Antoine Griezmann and NBA player Steph Curry also share their love for different eSports players on social media often.
The current generation of young parents is the first of its kind to have grown up playing video games. Due to that, they tend to pass down their love and passion for the industry to their kids. A case in point is research in the UK that shows about 75% of parents regularly plays video games with their kids.
As more millennials become parents, the trend of parent/child gamers will continue to balloon. Game developers will also create games that can bring together parents and their kids. And considering the modern home is full of smart devices, the future will be one where families with play and compete together.
It’s official. Gaming is a mainstream culture projected to continue impacting the lives of billions of people. Surprisingly, the industry was considered a past time for teenagers and unemployed adults just over two decades ago.
Nonetheless, it’s a mushrooming sector fueled by multiple crossovers with the casino industry; the media, Hollywood, colleges, and sports businesses.
Photo by Євгеній Симоненко from Pexels