Online gaming has become a phenomenally successful area of the larger gaming industry; so successful, that gamers are even watching other player’s games as entertainment. The trend has led to many conventions and online streaming platforms being created – the Playstation 4 even has a function that allows players to share footage of themselves playing games with other console users.
The Rise of Streaming Gameplay
Twitch is one of the most popular streaming platforms, with an incredible 60 million people visiting the site every month. The site allows users to broadcast their video game sessions so that others can watch, either for pure entertainment or to pick up tips.
The most popular games people watch on Twitch are League of Legends, World of Warcraft, Dota 2, Call of Duty and Minecraft. As well as watching other people play video games, Twitch users talk to each other in chat rooms that run alongside each video. A very strong community has grown out of the site and now communicates on other social media platforms as well, for example Twitter and Facebook.
If gaming was once associated with being antisocial behaviour, many people assuming that avid gamers spent hours alone in a dark room playing on their consoles – then now it grown into a very social activity.
A recent study showed that people who are shy in real life are likely to make more friends through online gaming, because it’s an easy way to interact without the struggles they can face in real life social situations, for example nerves and difficulty making eye contact.
The New Face of Sports – eSports
Gamers have also begun to watch other people play online casino games. This is particularly popular because players want to learn how to be better at games like roulette and blackjack. Some of the big brands such as Ladbrokes is often streamed through Twitch.tv They can go on chat forums and ask other players for tips, which leads to friendships forming and a community growing.
Members of the gaming community also interact with each other at conventions. This year’s Gen Con, the longest running gaming convention in America, had 56,614 unique attendees. All over the world, people attend conventions to look at game company exhibits, socialise with other enthusiasts and of course, play games.
To non-gamers, watching other people’s games might seem like a strange activity. As the gaming community continues to grow, the popularity of conventions and streaming sites like Twitch is expected to massively increase and it won’t be long before the idea of watching other people’s games becomes mainstream.