American Tablets and Cells are getting into the game
With tablets and smartphones getting more and more popular every year, more developers are developing for gamers on the go. Tablet gaming is America’s fastest growing market segment, and Forbes magazine expects the global growth rate of tablet gaming to increase by almost another 50 percent by 2016.
The Nintendo 3DS has taken over Japan
Beyond phones and tablets, the Nintendo 3DS and handheld gaming systems like it have become massively successful, especially in Japan. Eight of Japan’s top ten best selling games were made for the Nintendo 3DS, the best year for Nintendo and handheld gaming in years for Japan. The 3DS fever has even come to the U.S., where Smash Bros. and Pokémon X/Y made the top ten of 2014 despite America’s otherwise console-centric market.
International Indie Gaming
Not many markets can keep up with the major game developers based in the U.S., Japan, or Europe, but indie studios and games have been popping up all over the world. Fez (pictured below) from the U.S., Dimension Dive is being made in Holland, Penumbra: Overture came from Sweden, Pesadelo from Brazil, Replanet from Jordan, Antichamber from Australia, etc., all of which have or will make it to major gaming retailers.
Companions from Coast to Coast
Whether the game IS indie or mainstream though, a game is best enjoyed in the company of friends. It seems like every year more multiplayer games are released, and every year more games have lobbies both local and overseas. The days of the lonely gamer are over, and with social games like World of Warcraft, Street Fighter, and Rust that allow you to select lobbies on the other side of the world. The gaming communities have never been more international.
Champions from around the World
These international community, besides coming together via the internet, are also traveling the world to attend tournaments like EVO, PAX, or ComiCon. Daigo Umehara has represented the Japanese fighting game community at tournaments for years now just as has Ryan Ramirez, better known by his moniker “Filipino Champ,” has done the same for the Philippines. Japan is famous for fighting games, Korea and China train pro League of Legends and StarCraft players, North America has famed Call of Duty, Battlefield, and Madden players, while Latin America dominates the Fifa series. Each country has its own pros and talents, and gaming is becoming more of an international community every year because of it.