The gaming industry is hurling towards new horizons with the advancement in technology and awareness. New consoles become obsolete and the game with best graphics stop being the best game in a matter of months. The progressive technology has affected games from RPGs to online casinos. The latest trend and seemingly, the future of the gaming industry is: Gamers going live. Platforms like Facebook are also keeping up with the inevitable change with their “Level up” program that will focus on live streaming.
Video game streaming has opened up new channels for creators and consumers of creating branded content. It has become a new medium of entertainment and an effective marketing tool. Popular streaming services, such as twitch tv, receives millions of broadcasters and viewers every month. For now, it is the authentic, clutter-free and ad-free engagement that presents an exclusive opportunity to connect with an audience. This has made the interactions more meaningful; real-time feedback, quick and unfiltered communication creates a meaningful connection between streamers and their audience.
It is not a mystery that online video content is escalating ranks to become the most practical way for entertainment consumption. People are now also enjoying the game streams just like movie shows and television. Has there ever been a movie in action genre that has been as gripping as “the last of us” or “A thief’s end”? Much like Netflix, Hulu or Prime, new platforms like Twitch TV (Twitch phenomena) is making live streaming more and more like, if not better than, movie streams. Gamers broadcast their games live, others watch and participate actively.
Live online broadcasting and growth of eSports
Streaming gameplay isn’t a new phenomenon any longer. Twitch.tv was garnering 34 million unique users a month back in 2013. Stream now is not only about major tournaments but also about individual players streaming their gameplay from anywhere in the world, describing their strategy, giving advice to and conversing with a live audience at the same time. This two-way unadulterated and candid communication cultivates a loyal relationship between the streamers and their spectators. This new relationship has given birth to the new web community of esports fans who play games and even watch their favourite streamers play their favourite games. This caught the attention of many media leaders. Jim Lanzone, President of CBS Interactive said “The eSports scene is one of the hottest trends in video, and is rapidly attracting the core 18-34 male demographic in greater numbers than any other medium or category”
The liberty of watching and sharing live-streams of games has been there for a while now but the liberty of playing them is still in works. There is going to be a future where the ability to stream video games, much like movie streams, is going to be a reality. Whether you’ll be gaming from your couch or making it a part of your commute or playing your games controller-free, innovations from major companies like Intel are shaping the future of gaming in an entirely new idea.
Spectators became the most valuable assets
The spectating of eSports happens mostly online, thus, making them the most valuable asset for spreading your cause and online marketers. Whether these spectators are the inspired, the pupil, the entertained or the crowd, they all have one thing in common: they watch online streams for its entertainment value. Whether online or offline, sports spectating has always been a matter of entertainment primarily. Streamers with thousands of viewers generally use their streams to deliver a message, personal or not. They make fundraising as exciting as it gets and a fun experience in a way that only going live can.
To think about the hardware required for this new future is a cause of distress in itself. But developers are already working on it to lighten the load using the cloud. With the improvement in internet technology, you will not have to clear up the limited disc space that consoles offer just to play a new flagship game. Using cloud, games will bypass the disc space limitations.
The astounding growth
In 2017 alone, active streamer base of YouTube gaming has grown by 343%. Twitch claims to have over 15 million users active daily on the platform. The main growth factors out of many are: the advancement in live streaming and eSports. The live gaming industry is not yet saturated by advertising and thus, have a lot of room for messages that are not plagued by marketing.