How Did Online Gaming Become So Popular?


Gaming has become massively popular, almost opposite of how things were in the 80s, 90s, and early 2000s. Back then, it was considered a specific niche, but nowadays it has grown into an enticing industry.

After all, it’s normal for humans to seek ways to relax. And gaming is just another art form that can bring relaxation, joy, and even sorrow – with some video games managing to surpass most movies when it comes to storytelling and cinematography, as Death Stranding has proven recently.

When Did Online Gaming First Become Popular?

If you grew up in the 80s and 90s, you probably remember that the only multiplayer experiences you had were LAN parties and split-screen gaming.

While the first ever online game, MUD1, came out in the 70s, it was exclusive to ARPAnet, not the world wide web as we would come to know it later on. It wasn’t until Counter-Strike that gaming on the internet became truly popular.

But there was yet another hindrance in the online experience. Most people had poor dial-up connection and their only way of playing with someone from the other side of the globe was spending their money and time at an internet café. If it weren’t for that and hardware limitations, we would’ve probably seen a much faster growth.

Plus, that back in those days, there was no HTML5 or any other intuitive way to create a comprehensive site dedicated specifically to gaming. Only major companies like GameSpot, IGN, and others had the power to make such websites. No one would’ve even dreamed about a gaming website builder back then.

Recent Trends

The growth of the industry is staggering. Gamers spent more than $150 billion in 2019 alone. But the question is “why?” – why did this industry start to grow so much only recently? There are a couple of reasons that play a role in its revival.

First off, video game graphics have become so good that even non-gamers want to join in because they’re attracted by the looks. Directx12, Ray Tracing, and DLSS have basically made games look better than any CGI movie out there.

Secondly, even games that don’t feature all these recent technologies have still managed to attract players due to their sharpness and art style. Fortnite is a great example of this, as its graphics aren’t technically impressive, but they’re aesthetically pleasing. On the other hand, we’ve got PUBG that raised the bar for PC specs when it first launched.

Finally, we think that the younger generation was socially engineered to prefer gaming simply because they grew up with smartphones and tablets. All the more reason why they find holding and using a controller so intuitive. And because they’re used to communicating through social media, it’s no wonder that they choose online games over single-player experiences.

What Does the Future Hold For Online Gaming?

While smartphone enthusiasts are excited by the rise of 5G, people with broadband internet are awaiting the arrival of 10G.

Whenever such a technology comes to fruition, lag in online games will be a thing of the past. Lagging is considered the main culprit for rage quitting, so gamers that lack skills won’t have any excuse anymore. As for download speeds, you’ll be able to get your games at a whopping 10 gigabits per second – about ten times faster than today’s average internet speed.

In any case, things can only get better from here on out. We were lucky enough to have already great internet during this quarantine so we could play our favorite online games in peace. If it weren’t for the internet, this year would’ve been much, much harder.

Final Thoughts

It’s interesting to think how fast new technologies will emerge and how much they will enhance gaming overall.

While we’re waiting for 10G broadband networks to finally become a reality, smartphone online gamers can now enjoy the lightning-fast speeds of 5G.

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