If there is one thing we know about the future of social games, it will be lucrative. The industry generates billions in revenue every year, so it’s not surprising that the trend will continue in the following years. But what about the changes in the gaming scene? Players are interested to learn what they can expect from social games of the future. Let’s dig deeper.
Many players use different identities for different games, even those by the same publisher. Having a transferable XP, shared wallet and the same group of friends doesn’t sound too challenging, does it? That means, for example, when playing Vegas Downtown Slots, you’ll be able to use your virtual funds to sponsor other casino games of your choice.
Yet, not much has been done about this to the day. To be clear, we are not familiar with everything that goes on behind the scenes, so somebody might already be working on this.
However, by implementing something like this, players will benefit tremendously. Some of the benefits might include faster onboarding time, increased fun in multiple environments, social gaming sessions, and richer experiences.
Since this is a win-win situation, publishers will benefit from faster player onboarding processes and easier cross-promotion. What’s more, they might potentially profit from longer engagement through more owned platforms. That will lead to better monetization opportunities and increased brand connection.
Naturally, there are some warning signals that both parties need to keep an eye on. Enabling extremely fast experiences, including log-ins and setups, might be challenging. However, if publishers find a way to control this and build connected universes, the possibilities will be endless.
Real-Time Technology-Driven Games
For a larger appeal and easier access, top games are available on multiple platforms — console, mobile, desktop, even web. Some of the console games, like Call of Duty, have switched to mobile, others, like Poker Heat, have downloadable applications.
Additionally, and maybe surprisingly, there’s a lot of noise about streaming. A lot of big names and industry-leaders are jumping into streaming. That might mean that the future of gaming doesn’t come from a box but happens in real-time.
However, there are some downsides to this happening soon. First of all, the expenses would be enormous. Those expenses will fall more heavily on the publishers as computation costs will not be distributed on millions of devices but a server farm.
There is a higher monetization opportunity on the upside as there are fewer risks of trying a game. This might also lead to a larger user base and a longer payback period, which bodes well for both publishers and players.
Another thing that is likely to change in the future is game monetization. When you look at a few years ago, the majority of purchases were classified as in-app purchases. Although there are some in-app purchases today, in-app advertising has taken the lead. So, in-app monetization has a clear winner. But what about subscriptions?
Bear in mind that subscriptions are starting to grow as well. Purchasing a subscription means a player receives the full gaming portfolio for one price. That might lead to implementing the subscription system for streaming games.
This is a likely scenario for video games in professional leagues, such as League of Legends. For one price, people will have viewing rights, ads against viewing, sell tickets, have broadcasting rights, sponsorships, and maybe even enjoy some learning sessions from their on-screen heroes.
Undoubtedly, games make up a large part of our lives. But the way how we use games today is likely to change in the future. We can expect changes in making, distributing, and monetizing games. Since the competition is fierce, publishers will need to find new ways to surpass their competition, and this is only the beginning.