There has been a huge shift for gaming in recent years as many turn to their mobile devices as the primary form of gaming, in fact it has been suggested that over 50% of all gaming is done on our smart devices. This is typically a different type of gaming, however, as casual genres such as puzzle, or arcade style games, but has also seen a dramatic increase in sites for online gambling – despite changes to initiatives such as Gamstop aimed at reducing participation options, this sector continues to grow as more sites not blocked by gamstop become available for players – despite this popularity in mobile gaming, Amazon will be entering the gaming market through their own Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game on the PC.
The game titled ‘New World’ was set to release toward the back end of August but has since been moved to Spring 2021, and will be the first big release for the game studio after their battle royale/arena style game in Crucible was suggested to just be a sort of testing ground for the servers behind New World. Whilst for the most part it doesn’t seem to be bringing anything new to the genre, it does bring something that’s extremely important for this genre of game – a lot of money to fund the future. Typically MMORPG’s are extremely expensive to develop with a long development cycle, and then require a lot of capital to keep running whether this comes from an in-game cash shop styled system which sells ingame boosts and cosmetics, an ongoing subscription to play, or in this instance a buy to play model – given Amazon has their own server infrastructure, that’s one box likely ticked to keep costs down, but there’s still a lot to go into it.
There are some big shoes to fill – but it is a bit of a strange time to enter this market as a whole. MMORPG’s have been slowly on their way out as player numbers have been steadily dropping over the past decade at a time they were in their prime. The long time investment required for playing these games is something many aren’t prepared to do, and the core audience for that are now much older with responsibilities outside of games as the younger audience turn to titles with more immediate rewards. They’re also stepping into a market which has really been heavily weighted since 2004 – World of Warcraft continues to lead the industry and with a new expansion coming out in fall of this year, a lot of returning players will be taken back, alongside this there are the other big titles in Final Fantasy, Guild Wars, and The Elder Scrolls which still have the other sizeable portion.
It’s a competitive market to enter to try and find success, but there is a lot of hype for the game – if Amazon are able to bring something new to the market that has been quite stale for a number of years they may be able to captured a growing audience, but the early months will be crucial, especially as its biggest competitor will have a big expansion release as the game is still growing.