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How popular culture influences the gaming industry

How popular culture influences the gaming industry

Published by Programme B

The video game industry has influenced popular culture since the creation of the very first video game — if you have seen the original Tron film, you will understand just how big of an impact games have had on popular culture. Since then, there have been entire movie franchises which have been developed based off of video games. Most recently, the Witcher series was released and became hugely popular. 

However, it goes both ways and popular culture also influences the gaming industry. While it may not be as obvious as the creation of a television or movie series based off a video game, the influences of pop culture tastes, interests and consumption habits have all had their impact on the gaming industry, for better or worse.

All in the details 

If you have been gaming for over 10 years, and especially over 20, you will know that the graphics and audio for video games have come an incredibly long way and are now so detailed that they could often rival a CGI film. There has been a general trend in popular culture towards a better, more refined, more enhanced form of graphics and audio-visual production. 

Whether it is for a music video, film, television series or even just social media content, the graphics and audio quality for pop culture content has become increasingly clear, high-quality and well developed. This enhanced interest in better quality graphics and audio has had its impact on video games and is part of the reason why you now see games like Red Dead Redemption, God of War, Forza Horizon 4, Detroit: Become Human, Shadow of the Colossus and Anno 1800, which all feature startlingly beautiful graphics.


The search for novelty 

One other aspect of pop culture which has had an impact on the gaming industry has been the constant search for novelty. The dawn of the internet — and especially major social media platforms — has enabled us to have access to more content, products and information than ever before.

If you find it difficult to put your phone or laptop down and instead find yourself endlessly scrolling through social media feeds or channels, you are not alone. In fact, studies have been done which show that our brains react positively to seeing new information, products or images. As a result of these new experiences, we begin to crave more and more novelty.

This search for the new or novel has had an impact on the gaming industry as it means that there is a new pressure on the industry to publish as many games as possible, as quickly as possible. 

One sector of the gaming industry in which this is especially apparent is in the online gambling industry. The consumer demand for new, interesting games in the online gambling industry is especially high, and many online casinos are struggling to keep up with the rate of publication of new online casino games along with the demands of consumers. 

However, other online casinos are attracting new clientele by offering extensive libraries of online casino games. For example, according to SuperSeven’s website, SuperSeven offers a wide range of genres of games and hundreds of different titles of games in nearly every genre.


New forms of connection

Another major shift in pop culture has been the move towards new ways of connecting with other people around the world. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter have all been instrumental in this shift towards a more digital form of socializing. While everyone still enjoys have a beer at their local bar, they now also have the ability to connect with others around the world. 

The gaming industry has also been open to new, digital ways of connecting and socializing. Massively multiplayer online games allow players from around the world to connect, chat and play with one another, whenever they like.

Many online games are now also increasingly accessible because they are free to play and have learned to monetize the games either through subscription models or through allowing players to instead make purchases in the game itself. These in-game purchases can include anything from new skins, lives or opportunities in the game.

Finally, online gaming has become increasingly social thanks to platforms such as Twitch, which allow gamers to stream themselves as they play different video games. Streamers on social gaming platforms do more than just play games though, they also talk with their fans, build communities and have streamed events on the platform, thus creating even more of a social environment.

Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels