Playing video games is one of the most popular hobbies around the world. The video game industry has diversified from arcade and console games to PC games, mobile games and online games. Competitive gaming is now recognized as a legitimate sport, and esports tournaments are major events.
None of this would be possible if we were still stuck in the days of Pong, Frogger and 8-bit scrollers. The advances in graphics and gameplay are central to the popularity of video games across a wide section of the population. Now that video games are more engaging to look at and more cinematic, they appeal to more people.
In this article, we’ll look at one of the game genres that has seen the most development in recent years and then we’ll discuss the two most important changes that have happened in terms of graphics and gameplay.
Online casino games
One of the game genres that gives us a clear example of how much gaming has advanced in recent years is online gambling games. In the early days of online gambling, the options for players were very limited. There were incredibly basic versions of poker,blackjack and rudimentary slot machine games. They were on par with the original Microsoft pinball game in terms of graphics and complexity.
In the last few years, the online casino industry has exploded, and the graphics and gameplay used now can compete with products from many of the top developers in the video game industry. In terms of gameplay, the introduction of live casino games has been the biggest advance. These games make it possible for players and dealers to interact in real time.
In terms of graphics, slot machine games are evidence of how far graphics have come – even for simple games. The slot libraries of most online casinos include hundreds of games, and they feature exciting graphics with detailed animations across a wide variety of themes. There are also pooled jackpot games that have all of the visual innovation of the top slots combined with the gameplay innovation of having the jackpot grow as players play, increasing the excitement.
The most important evolution in video game graphics is Unreal Engine. Unreal Engine is a 3D graphics game engine that is used to produce graphics for video games, film and television. The first version was introduced in the 1990s and it has been consistently improved since then. The current version, Unreal Engine 5, saw wide release in 2022.
This version is the most sophisticated yet and has allowed game developers to achieve a level of photorealism that was previously thought to be impossible. One of the reasons that Unreal Engine has been able to have such a major impact on the video game industry is because it works on a royalty model. This makes it accessible to even the smallest game studios and levels the playing field to some extent, allowing them to compete with major studios.
One additional minor evolution in gaming is actually a bit of a step back. Video game graphics have reached a point in their development where retro graphics have also returned to popularity. 8-bit and 16-bit graphics are usually used by indie developers who want to release a high-quality game in terms of story and gameplay but who don’t have the time or budget to invest in modern graphics.
The most important development in terms of gameplay is the move towards open-world games. Many of the early popular video games were side-scrollers with a single, straight trajectory. These were followed by games with a very direct route that players were required to follow in order to complete all of the game objectives. Open-world gaming changed that.
Open-world games are games in which exploring is a major part of the experience. Instead of following a single path, players choose where they go and what quests they take on as they move through the world. These games have complex maps that extend much further than a traditional video game map.
Open-world games aren’t limited to a single genre. One of the first to capture widespread attention was Red Dead Redemption, a cowboy adventure game. Many of the most popular open-world games are in the fantasy adventure genre or sci-fi games. Even the Halo series has received the open-world treatment, with Halo Infinite significantly expanding the scope of the original games.