Will video games also be designed for mobile in the future?

Will video games also be designed for mobile in the future?

In the current videogame landscape we can divide the titles available into two categories, based on the type of device with which we are going to play them. In fact, there are video games designed mainly for consoles and PCs, to which we dedicate our precious time comfortably seated on the sofa or in our gaming station. Other software, on the other hand, is developed to be used on the bus or train, in the waiting room at the post office, during idle times or generally on the move using the smartphone or tablet in our possession. With the arrival of new technologies such as cloud gaming, increasingly powerful mobile hardware performance and winning hybrid experiments such as the Nintendo Switch, the two worlds - "fixed" and mobile gaming - are slowly merging.

The final result has not yet been defined by the industry and it will probably take years of experimentation to obtain a winning model from this point of view. The intent, however, is that of "Play Anywhere" just as one of the popular slogans of the Microsoft Xbox ecosystem claims. In this article we want to try to make some considerations on this, to try to understand how video games will also be designed for mobile, as well as for home systems and PCs.

The difference

Clash Of Clans: a classic of mobile games Nowadays it is particularly easy to distinguish a mobile video game from one designed for consoles and PCs. In addition to the technical limitations due to the hardware of smartphones and tablets, at the basis of the development there is also a different target of use and type of gameplay. Mobile games are often designed for quick and immediate gaming sessions, so that at any time we can start the application from our device and play for a few minutes in the various dead times during the day. Quite on the contrary, consoles and PCs enjoy a range of titles with a decidedly greater complexity and to which we must devote a different attention to that which can be had in a noisy waiting room at the post office. We certainly do not want to generalize these concepts too much, because we know very well that the world of mobile gaming wants to get closer to that of home consoles and vice versa, to give consumers greater freedom of choice and broaden the horizons of video games on all platforms.

We simply want to underline how a The Witcher 3 or Cyberpunk 2077 video game is difficult to use on the move on a device with a small display such as a smartphone. Likewise we are sure that few (probably none) of you would buy an Xbox Series X to play Clash Of Clans or Candy Crush exclusively. They are in fact two different types of video games, designed to entertain the public in a different way during various moments of the day. In games like Skyrim or The Last Of Us it takes a certain concentration and above all time to immerse yourself in the game world and appreciate the views, sounds, dialogues and events narrated by the software being played. By starting a game like Clash Royale instead we can easily spend five minutes for a quick game in a noisy train carriage, without losing much of the experience.

Companion app: the first meeting point

The companion app dedicated to FIFA for iOS and Android The spread and use of smartphones is growing year after year. These electronic devices are now within the reach of many people around the world and their usefulness in everyday life cannot be more easily ignored. Downloading an application from their respective digital stores has become as simple as paying for coffee at the café downstairs. The most successful category of applications is undoubtedly the one related to mobile video games, a gigantic source of income for the entire industry, which is recording new records on a monthly basis. In addition to the games themselves, there are also special software called "companion apps". As the name suggests, these applications are a kind of extension of a video game typically available on other platforms.

Some video games use this add-on to enhance and extend the gaming experience, taking it from consoles and PCs to devices. furnishings. FIFA Ultimate Team is a perfect example of this model, which wants to combine the two worlds defined in the previous paragraph. When we are around we can update our squads and players from the companion app so that, returning home, we can already find the team ready to take the field and face the various online leagues of the popular FIFA mode. In a similar way we can also mention Destiny 2, which on the one hand offers an excellent shooting experience on consoles and PCs, on the other hand it allows us to customize and enhance our guardian directly from our smartphone. In addition to these two games, there are numerous titles that could adopt this solution, to extend the gameplay to an external platform, improving and optimizing the experience offered by the title. Video games like Cyberpunk 2077 or Skyrim may also have their own dedicated companion app. In these cases, the usefulness of the application for smartphones and tablets would be to be able to read the various insights contained in the game database, or in the case of Skyrim, the real books found in the vast Nordic expanses of the medieval-fantasy setting. br>
Companion app for the Call Of Duty series If we want to continue with the examples we can also mention the entire Call Of Duty franchise. In fact, an application already exists, but it has not yet been updated to support the weapons and classes of Warzone and the recent Black Ops Cold War. If we also want Monster Hunter World could be exploited in this sense with a mobile application from which to modify and update the equipment of our character to immediately go to the hunt for monsters once back home. We want to underline how many video games could lend themselves to an expanded gameplay model with the presence of a companion app. The goal of the developers should not be to remove features from the game and include them only in mobile applications, but to add this possibility to keep the consumer tied to their creation, even when he cannot physically stand in front of the gaming machine.

Cloud gaming: the hybrid solution

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate available via streaming on smartphones and tablets The numerous cloud gaming services are revolutionizing the gaming market a bit. With a good connection, you can access a vast library of video games from any device at any time, without having to purchase a dedicated gaming machine.

Google Stadia, Nvidia GeForce Now and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate (just to name a few of the most popular) are giving every user the ability to play titles like Cyberpunk 2077, Red Dead Redemption 2, Destiny 2, FIFA 21, Assassin's Creed Valhalla directly on your smartphone or tablet. This is a real revolution, as these video games were not actually designed to be played on these devices, but thanks to these new technologies they were able to land in a completely new market.

A bit like the numerous video games on Nintendo Switch, other console and PC titles can also be played both on the move and from the classic fixed location. In fact, we can start a game of Assassin's Creed Valhalla on the TV and then continue it on the move on the talbet if we have to give space in the living room to the other family members. All this without particular interruptions, transfers of bailouts or other complications that could make the transition less fluid and immediate. Later we can also decide to go to a friend to show him the progress of our killer and connect directly to our game with the smartphone, finding the same save as the video game played with the same fluidity and quality. Video games like the ones mentioned above were not meant to be played on mobile devices. The gaming experience therefore does not reach its peak given the small size of the display or due to a control system that is certainly not optimal if you do not have a controller to combine with your smartphone. It is therefore only a definitely appreciated addition, which can expand the gaming experience, but without significantly widening it.

The hybrid future

Gwent card game available on iOS and Android The goal of the developers for the development of the next games will probably be to find a certain synergy between the gameplay offered for "traditional" gaming machines and that designed for mobile devices. The purpose of this development is to extend the gaming experience to multiple platforms, enabling the consumer to stay in touch with his favorite titles at any place or time. However, everything must not ruin the game if we decide to use it in a "classic" way, otherwise we can already imagine how the very active gamers community might react.

What do we expect to happen in the future? We will probably see more gameplay solutions designed for mobile gaming. For example, a game like The Wither 3 could offer the excellent single player campaign on consoles and PCs and then expand its gameplay on smartphones and tablets with the card game Gwent (already present as a sort of minigame within the title CD Projekt RED). Following this trivial example, other video games could also offer gameplay sections better suited to be played on smartphones and tablets, such as the numerous minigames present on Red Dead Redemption 2 and in other open world titles. Similarly, other less demanding side quests could be added, game mechanics such as trading items, creating and customizing weapons, armor, vehicles or simply adding databases to expand knowledge of the game's lore. Clearly the advances recorded in mobile mode would be added to the classic ones to have a sense of constant advancement in the video game. This should be seen as an optional addition, without being neglected in terms of implementation and development.

Different ways to play with the Nintendo Switch Being able to continue the game experience on a different device in places and different situations during the day, it could be really very intriguing. Given the obvious differences between the "classic" way of playing and that available on mobile devices, developers should devote a greater focus on creating specific features for the latter. The final result, however, could be very pleasant, if they manage to make the use of mobile gameplay useful to continue the video game on consoles and PCs. Alternatively, it would take a modification of the interface and gameplay in general to adapt the video game to smartphones and tablets in order to reach a wider audience and more closely link the consumer to the released software.

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