Mobile gaming has come a very long way since the introduction of crude & simple games like Snake and Pong which were available on early Nokia phones. Mobile processors and graphics are now as powerful as desktop computers were just a few years ago. Older generations still remember lugging around a Game Boy or Game gear and begging their parents for another game. New generations literally have access to 100’s of thousands of games on their mobile device.
In short, mobile gaming has exploded in just a few years time. In the month of July 2016 there were 63.1 million arcade games downloaded & games in the “strategy” category generated $195M revenue. In a recent study over 37% of mobile app users with 30 minutes of free time choose to play games over any other activity Arkadium Games. We’ve all seen it and we’ve all done it ourselves, whether its waiting for an appointment or sitting at the airport, we pull out our mobile device and jump into a quick game to kill the time.
So what does all of this mean for the future of android gaming? For starters, the massive amounts of revenue and user interest in android gaming has bolstered continuous innovation and fierce competition in the global marketplace. For example, just 12 months ago, top executives were saying they didn’t see any major benefit to augmented reality. With the release of Pokemon Go and estimates citing as much as $500 million in revenue in just 60 days, I think we can all agree augmented reality is here to stay.
Virtual reality is another area that has been picking up steam in recent months. You can now buy virtual reality headsets at local gas stations for a mere $30. Or if you’re on a budget you can purchase Google Cardboard for as little as $7.00. There are still only a limited number of VR enabled games but that number is increasing daily. Not only that, as more and more people experience VR we are sure to see a blockbuster release sooner or later.
There are many different ways to find an alpha, beta or early access games. Let me share with you the ways that have worked for me:
1) Social media – You can find games by looking on Twitter, Facebook, Tumbler and Pinterest. You will perform a search by typing in alpha games, beta games or new releases. If you are on these platforms, your friends may also be talking about these games. Go and see what their conversations are about to include screenshots of the game or video.
2) Steam is a platform where you buy games, connect with other gamers and even buy software. When you are on Steam, go to the store and search early access. If you want alpha or beta games, go to Steam Greenlight. This is where they are pitching the idea. Sometimes there are demos you can try.
3) Another way to find games in Steam is if you are in a certain group, if you or a friend is a friend of the developer. They can also tell you what they have available.
4) The same method in number 3 applies to the chatting platforms Slack and Discord. Discord is pretty new. Slack may be semi-new just in case you haven’t heard of those.
5) Don’t forget to check the Crowdfunding sites such as Indiegogo and Kickstarter. When on these sites you can search for games. For example, if you go to Kickstarter.com, you would choose Explore. Then go to Categories. Once you choose Games there are different types of games. You will need to read through the different games and see if they have a demo to try. You may also get an opportunity to sign up for the alpha or beta game.
Another site that is not a crowdfunding; however it is a place to find games in the alpha, beta or early access stage is called IndieDB. You do not buy anything on here. (Similar to steam but no buying).