It doesn’t seem all that long ago that gaming largely had a somewhat singular audience as the primary demographic had been younger teen males, the older adverts particularly for the likes of handheld devices from Nintendo certainly helped to show this more than anything else too – but over the past few years that has changed, the once niche audience of primarily younger teen males has since changed particularly on devices like mobile as statistics show that over half of all players are now over the age of 34, with the same statistic also suggesting that women are now primary consumers of mobile games. But what led to the change?
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Changing genres help grow newer audiences – Whilst game releases are targeted for all audiences, there are certainly some genres that are more favoured amongst some rather than others and to hit the older players in particular. This has been seen particularly on the likes of mobile with the rise of non uk casinos as one of the most popular genres on the platform that have helped many players make the adjustment and will continue to be something that leads to further change moving forward as different genres are targeted primarily to this new audience as the primary consumer.
Streaming and Esports have helped a lot too – The rise of streaming platforms back at the end of 2008 sort of time certainly started to help some names gain traction, but it wasn’t until around 2011 and 2012 where platforms like Twitch really started to grow with the big names in streaming now largely starting out around that time, it was also at this same time where esports started to emerge too with League of Legends and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive becoming the big esports titles, now able to capture tens of millions of viewers per each big event, numbers have started to rival those put forward by traditional sporting. As esports and streaming continue to grow year on year too, this will be a space that helps gaming reach new audiences and demographics alike.
Accessibility has been just as important – The early days of gaming often came with a big expense, buying the console could reach into the hundreds of dollars much like today along with the cost of games which soon added up after buying a few too, which had been enough to deter all but the most interested. With mobile now allowing players to experience gaming in a different way without the additional cost, removing the need to buy extra hardware and the games themselves have certainly been more impactful on allowing new players who may have been a little hesitant to explore new gaming options, and develop the passion that millions now have.