Things go in and out of fashion all the time, and it is not uncommon for once-dead devices or products to make their way back into the mainstream. Although, arcade games were one that nobody expected – why would people want to reverse decades of progress in gaming and get access to a sub-par experience?
This is the exact mindset that many people have upon hearing about the growing popularity of arcade games; but after this article, we are confident that you will see things from a different perspective. Let’s get straight into it and take a look at why arcade games are gaining popularity in India as well as what this means for the gaming industry going forward.
On the surface level, arcade games are just fun to play. There is very little thought that has to go into playing an arcade game – you just get started and you’re off. This type of fun is incredibly appealing, and in a world where games are becoming increasingly complex in an effort to be something new, this is just a breath of fresh air. However, whilst arcade games may seem simple on the surface, the way they are designed is anything but.
Almost all of the most popular arcade games you come across are going to have a similar concept/premise. There is a simple level that gets substantially harder over time, and this continues until you die or fail the mission. This may sound a little strange at first – why would people want to play a game that is so barebones?
While we don’t have time to go into the psychology of why humans like arcade games, we certainly can take a peek beneath the hood to get a sense of what’s going on.
The most notable reason why we love arcade games so much is their simple yet addictive progression systems. You see, we humans are incredibly unique – for some reason, we like to trick ourselves into thinking we are doing something worthwhile when we are not.
The sense of progression that arcade games can provide allows us to get a huge hit of dopamine for every inch that we move forward, and this is what keeps us playing for hours on end.
Another important factor that makes arcade-like games so enticing is the fine line they balance between difficulty and simplicity. There is a sweet spot in our that dictates the optimal amount of difficulty/complexity to get us engaged, and arcade games manage to hit said sweet spot perfectly.
Make a game too difficult, and we give up. Make a game too easy, and we get bored. This intricate balance is what arcade games truly excel at, and this is perhaps the biggest factor that makes them so attractive.
Arcade Games are Popular, But Arcade Machines are Not
It’s got to be said; it is incredibly unlikely that there is going to be an arcade machine resurgence any time soon. Arcade games like Aviator are popular for a reason – they do not require an arcade machine to play. Sure, there is a certain nostalgic aura that arcade machines bring, and no one is saying that their disappearance would be a good thing for the world.
However, when we say arcade games are gaining popularity, we are mainly talking about arcade games that can be played on a PC, phone, or console, and we do not by any means intend to imply that arcade machines are on the rise.
As we mentioned in the previous section, arcade games are incredibly enticing for a variety of reasons, and the reasons why they are becoming so popular once again are completely logical.
Although, if this means we had to travel down to the local casino or arcade in order to play arcade games, the current situation we find ourselves in would be drastically different, and it is likely that arcade games would die alongside their arcade machine counterparts.
Consoles are far too handy to forego, and when we have access to technology akin to this, why would we want to take a leap back in time? Well, we don’t.
The fact that arcade games can be played on a myriad of other consoles allows us to get access to arcade games without having to make the arduous trek to the nearest arcade/casino, and this has played a huge factor in their current popularity.
What This Means for the Future of Gaming
The future of gaming is mostly unknown. Things just change at too quick of a pace for us to predict what the future landscape is going to look like, and any estimations we do make are usually way off the mark. However, this one variable always stays the same; us.
Due to the effects that arcade-like games can have on us, it is likely that we are going to see similar game types replicate this in the future, and it would not be a surprise to see smaller/simpler games become much more popular. Although, this is nothing new.
Simple fun games have been on the rise for the past few years, and we were well aware of what made the human brain tick before the recent surge in the popularity of arcade games. Rudimentary games are going to become much more common, and we can almost guarantee you that you are going to see a lot more of them over the coming years.
So, what do you think about the return of arcade games? Do you think that arcade games are able to provide an experience not available anywhere else and you welcome their return, or do you think this is just a lazy attempt from people to revisit their youths?
Whatever your opinion may be; it’s not going to change the fact that arcade games are huge right now. Whether or not it will last is still up for debate, but when you factor in the unique properties they bring to the table, it looks as if there is always going to be some sort of market for arcade games. Catch you at the next one.