Gaming has exploded into a $25 billion industry, according to the ESA. It is so integrated into our lifestyles that games influence products and products influence games. A great example of this circular influence is the success of the Subaru WRX in the U.S. market, which is directly related to the popularity of the Gran Turismo™ video games.
“People learned about the WRX through the game at a time when the car was not available in the U.S. market, and in those pre-Internet days, information on products outside of the U.S. was very hard to come by,” said Martyn Harding, product engineering manager at Subaru of America, Inc. “When the WRX launched in the U.S., there was a huge fan following waiting to purchase the car well prior to any marketing done by Subaru. They had never seen or driven the car, but they knew from the game that they had to have one.”
Moving forward, experts predict that social gaming will continue its strong momentum.
“We’ll see more and more social interaction, as gamers will find it easier to meet like-minded individuals and game with them even if they aren’t able to get together,” Loosen said.
One thing is for certain: Gamers can look forward to new experiences. Game developers and platform holders will keep dreaming up new ways to entertain us and satisfy our human need to connect with others.