On February 14th, the debut song of football star Hristo Stoichkov was released
Top Tier Gaming Without Breaking the Bank
The global gaming industry now commands a net worth of upwards of $300 billion a year. There are many reasons behind why this media sector, once a close market rival of Hollywood, radically outgrew all other forms of entertainment in the 21st century.
From new monetization models like freemium gaming, to the rise of the smartphone – which put all new demographics without easy reach of quality gaming experiences, the age of the video game is well and truly upon us.
What’s more, now with vast resources and investment at its back, game developers are able to be more ambitious than ever and are crafting true blockbuster titles on a scale that would have been unimaginable in the late 1990s. Take Super Mario 64, the flagship game of Nintendo’s N64 console. Estimates suggest this title – which was the very definition of a triple-A game in 1996, cost around $20 million to produce, which is around $55 million when corrected for inflation.
Contrast this now with Red Dead Redemption 2, one of the biggest and most ambitious games produced in the last 5 years. Estimates for its total development cost average out at around $500 million – some ten times that of Super Mario 64. The results are truly remarkable, with an attention to detail and sense of scale rarely before seen in the medium. Unfortunately, such vast productions cannot avoid passing on some of their costs to the end consumer, with the price of games rising to a current asking price of $70, resulting in fewer sales on the latest generation of consoles.
This can make gaming prohibitive to certain players who are unable to keep pace with the rising budgets. Fortunately, there are alternatives to this conundrum. As the industry has expanded, it has also innovated, and now provides a range of novel ways to access and enjoy high quality games – let’s take a look at some key examples of this phenomenon below.
Free to play games have taken the industry by storm in recent years, with popular esports like Fortnite, Call of Duty: Warzone 2 and PUBG Mobile all employing versions of this monetization model. Simply put, these games let anyone play the whole title, free of charge, making them a sensational deal for those watching the pennies.
The way this works is that these titles make their money through the sale of optional microtransactions – customizations like character outfits and weapon skins that do not impact the gameplay. That way, those who want to opt-in and invest in personalizing their game can do so, without penalizing those players who would rather play for free.
Demos, free trials and promotional offers have always been central to the way the gaming industry markets its products, and it’s easy to see why. Few sectors can be thought to more directly benefit from a ‘try before you buy approach’ as those involving games. There are numerous means by which promotional offers are utilized to great effect across the industry. For example, in the exciting and diverse world of online casinos, it’s not uncommon to find a whole host of competitive sign-up offers and bonuses provided by industry recommendation platforms such as CasinoReviews. For example, patrons looking to access digital table titles on a budget in regions can make the most of 1 deposit casinos in NZ and other regions to get down to playing for mere pocket change.
Elsewhere, in the realm of video games, it’s increasingly common to ship games with a limited trial period, enabling people to experience all the game has to offer for upwards of a month before deciding whether to commit to purchasing the title – a strategy that enjoys a high conversion rate, and one that facilitates budget-conscious gamers in making the right choices for their requirements and bottom line.
Suppose you really want to play those headline triple-A titles that seem so prohibitively costly at times, is there any alternative available to you? Happily, the answer is yes – at least providing you have a good internet connection. Cloud gaming is a new technology that works much like Netflix or YouTube insofar as it streams content to your local device over the internet.
Popular examples of this tech like the Xbox’s Cloud Gaming service, can be accessed for a nominal subscription fee that lets you dive in and play day one launch titles like Forza Motorsport and Halo Infinite from any internet ready device you have at hand, including your smartphone!
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