From Snake to VR: How the World of Gaming Continues to Evolve

Rewind 20 years and the world of gaming was remarkably different to the current-day incarnation of the industry. In fact, gaming was largely based on the concept of buying either a high spec PC or a video game console and enjoying the experience through either of these means.

With each passing year since then, new innovations have cropped up – take the change from 2D platform games to 3D games, for instance. You’ll find it hard to come across a die-hard gamer who will be critical of the nostalgic joys of Sonic, but the move away from platform games was a radical one. The internet, meanwhile, introduced the opportunity to game online against other players, while the release of the Nokia 3310 (which was so popular that it was recently brought back) brought with it “Snake” and the first realization that mobile phones could be used for something other than calling and texting.

At the time, all of these developments were hailed as innovative, but the evolution of the gaming world hasn’t stopped there, and the next few years look set to bring with them a whole new set of innovations capable of radically switching up the gaming landscape, perhaps to one where we think of consoles as being primarily for the pros and smartphones as the arena of the casual gamers. Right now, though, virtual reality looks like it’s going to be the next step in the evolution of the gaming scene.

Making 3D the Old Reality

If we look back at how much changed when 3D became the new gaming norm, imagine how further improvements in augmented reality and virtual reality technology could change the way we play games. If we take Pokemon Go and the success it had as an example of bringing augmented reality to the world of smartphones, you can see how readily this technology can blend the real and the virtual world together as the lines continue to be blurred between real and the imagined landscapes for gamers.

“Pokémon GO” by Eduardo Woo (CC BY-SA 2.0)

AR has already enjoyed this burst into the mainstream, but it is likely that it will be virtual reality that will see the world of gaming evolve in a much more noticeable way over the next few years. More and more Playstation games are already VR compatible. With Sony having created their own technology to develop a VR headset and gaming capabilities for the PS4 console it is clear that the major players are already piling the cash into pushing VR as the next big thing.

Who is Ahead of the Curve?

The gaming market can take inspiration from the iGaming industry when it comes to pushing VR forward as an accepted gaming experience that enriches standard gameplay. The industry as a whole is one with huge demands placed on it to stay ahead of the technology curve and there are already a few virtual reality gaming options being tested and teased at industry events. Net Entertainment’s “Jack and the Beanstalk” slot game is just one example, with gamers able to feel like they are physically taking part in the action of the slot game. Further innovation is likely to revolve around roulette and blackjack, so now may well be the time for casual gaming fans to brush up on rusty skills – read blackjack guide here for an intro to the standard rules and card values – before VR technology becomes the dominant force!

“Virtual Reality Demonstrations” by Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas, University of Texas at Austin (CC BY 2.0)

There’s little doubt that for those keen on testing the water with VR that the iGaming world is likely to get there quickly and in more innovative ways than many other industries, but what is also clear is that as technology improves, gaming in all of its forms refuses to be left behind. In fact, it could well be that as consumers catch up with the VR developments of the gaming and iGaming world, those industries have already moved onto the next innovation in the world of gaming technology!

What do you think?

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