Anybody who endured the primitive graphics and slow gameplay of earlier online gaming titles like Runescape at the turn of the century will realise how quickly this activity has evolved.
Now we’re able to play cutting-edge titles against endless online competitors in genres ranging from sci-fi to casino games.
But which are the titles that are really pushing the online gaming revolution forward? A quick look at the Star Wars: The Old Republic quickly illustrates just how fast things have changed.
Whilst old Star Wars titles suffered from a tenuous adaptation from the movie screen, the recent online game revels in crisp graphics, smooth gameplay, and hugely enjoyable multiplayer carnage to make us nearly forget that it was a Hollywood movie franchise that inspired the whole thing!
But there’s something about online gaming that seems to be particularly well-suited to the huge range of MMO games. Titles like Tribal Wars 2 and DarkOrbit Reloaded provide plenty of opportunity to sharpen your strategic skills in the online domain that really come alive when played against real-life competitors in real-time.
Even the simple graphics of titles like agar.io mask a complexity in gameplay that would be unthinkable without the incredible ability to compete against dozens of human competitors remotely.
But it’s probably the endless range of battle arena games that are really showing off the full potential of the online gaming revolution. Some of the browser-based battle arena titles carried at Kongregate show just how much carnage and chaos can now be packed into an online game, and it’s going to be fascinating to see how this genre develops over the coming years.
Perhaps the biggest challenge for online gaming will be how it implements forthcoming augmented and virtual reality technologies. Part of the reason as to why online gaming has thrived has been down to how smartphones to laptops offer us unprecedented convenience in enjoying our favourite games.
And so it remains to be seen how virtual reality’s quest for immersive realism will be balanced against online gaming’s convenience to help us enjoy anything from a browser-based casino game to a VR first person shooter at just the push of a button.