Gaming is more exciting than ever at the moment, with new releases being even more diverse in the coming year. Many of the industry’s major players are putting out new games and consoles, including offerings from Sony Playstation and Nintendo Wii. When it comes to content, expect to see a mix of the most popular blockbuster franchises along with up and coming game designs from independent design companies. Design and animation software has become increasingly advanced, allowing independent designers to create professional games from home. By keeping an eye on these trends, you can take advantage of some of this year’s most intriguing entertainment options.
New Blockbuster Games
Video game fans can expect some big names from their favourite franchises to come out in 2013. These include new instalments from Grand Theft Auto, Tomb Raider, Fire Emblem, and Lost Planet, among others. Expect to see the continuation of popular story lines and the creation of new characters and features using all the slick technology that professional designers have at their disposal. Big-budget design programs like Maya have been updated to allow more advanced character rigging for extremely realistic details.
Crowd-funded Indie Games
Among the big names, you’ll also see the release of new games from up and coming designers or independent teams. One of the biggest trends of 2012 that is set to continue is the use of networks like Kickstarter to find funding for these new games. Kickstarter and other programs of its ilk allow designers to put up a pitch online, asking for money to help fund the idea and turn it into a reality. One independent design company that has successfully used Kickstarter in the past is Double Fine, earning 3.3 million from public donations to fund a new game that’s currently in development. They are also developing a new adventure game called The Cave, which will be downloadable for numerous platforms in 2013.
Video game consoles are going to have even more intuitive features for players, with the latest model of the Wii U offering a touch screen on the controller. Touch screen features and wireless integration between different media devices will help open up games to wider audiences, with an even higher level of interactivity than in the past. Designers are using 3D software to create virtual realities that can be synched between the controller, TV, smartphone, and tablet as needed. Games may include downloadable components or extra levels online in addition to what is offered in the initial package, to help integrate different player platforms.
As smaller design companies receive funding from a variety of sources, they’re able to design new games and sell them online. Although you can expect to see more notable brands putting out games in the traditional disc format, more and more independent companies are going digital. This saves money on packaging and marketing materials, and gives game players the instant gratification of purchasing a game from home. With higher levels of interactivity, intuitive features like touchscreen controllers, and crowd- sourced indie games to try out, the video game industry should be an interesting one to keep an eye on this year.