E3 2016: The 5 Influences That Will Shape The Future of Gaming
If there is anything I learned at this past E3 Expo, it’s that the world of interactive entertainment is advancing exponentially. Virtual reality was the main focus as many developers competed with the best they had to offer. That said, VR wasn’t all there was to show off; other games that weren’t VR came packing big punches. I walked the floors and played the games of E3, and what follows is a list of what I feel will the five biggest advances in gaming in the years to come. Not to be confused with the top five games, these are instead influences that will shape the future of gaming. Let’s see what that future holds.
1. Remakes and remasters
With new technology comes new games and franchises, but what else is new? At E3 we were given announcements of games getting reboots or being remastered for the newest generation of consoles. Veteran gamers will soon be able to replay some of their favorite games from the past, but with updated graphics and even gameplay on the most current consoles. Titles like Crash and Final Fantasy VII will be making returns to the PlayStation 4 and from the reaction of most gamers at E3, it seems like the hype couldn’t be any higher.
The future of gaming isn’t just going to be the creation of newer titles and franchises, but also the return of former major titles and the nostalgia that they will bring. To be able to play your favorite childhood game, but on a next-generation system is nothing short of a reward for gamers from the industry for being loyal and patient.
2. Live the game with RPGs
In the future we can not only expect to see the return of old games, but also see a change happening to the newer games coming out. E3 2016 showcased a lot of new highly anticipated games, most with the common theme of they all felt like RPG’s. Most of the games I tried out seemed to have a lot more choices in character customization or choices you can make in the game. With different abilities, gear, and other choices, each game immersed me more into the world I was playing and I even felt more in tune with the role I was given.
Rather than being given a character to fight with or a vehicle to drive, most of the newest games give you many ways to customize to your play style. Injustice 2 was a prime example: a fighting game where one can get different pieces of gear to change the stats and appearance of their favorite DC champion. Customization isn’t the only aspect that makes a game feel more like an RPG. Cinematics let you see the character you worked so hard on come to life on their own, and provide you with a sense of pride on your creation. The future of gaming relies on being able to capture players attentions and making them truly enjoy the game, so what better way to immerse us than by giving us the ability to make the character feel more personal.
3. Truly experience the game
As the years go on we advance in technology, and in turn our gaming worlds evolve into realistic lands that we can explore. Each world we visit is so well designed and built, that the graphics occasionally seems better than life. We as players get to truly experience new worlds, to be able to gaze on environments that only exist in our imagination. The evolution to 4K video is nearly an unrealistic jump, as the quality is so powerful that you aren’t just observing a screen as you play, but also feel every inch of the environment you progress through. Every game I played I wanted to just sit and slow walk through; I wanted to truly experience each new world I was visiting.
Video games are becoming more than just games–they are becoming an experience. Developers increase the ambience, as well as truly try to indulge you by using as many senses as they can. From breath-taking graphics, to hearing every sound, and feeling every movement with controller vibration, every moment in games is progressing past the virtual land they are contained in. Instead, they are becoming more real as it feels like you are truly visiting somewhere new.
4. Explore and discover with open worlds
One of the biggest aspects of gaming I saw that was advancing quickly was that nearly every highly anticipated game was open-world. Open-world shooters like Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Wildlands, or even a new open-world action sports game like Steep really shows that playing a game isn’t enough. Exploring that world and having freedom is what gamers desire.
Games like No-Man’s-Sky really show that open world can be nearly infinite, and exploring a game can truly captivate gamers for months. No longer will we be confined to one castle, city, or even country, as the future of gaming is exploring a new frontier–one more infinite than space itself. This is what I see as the true final frontier; this is what we can do with our imagination.
5. You are the game: VR has arrived
On the top of this list of course is virtual reality. Soon we will not only be able to just play games, but be inserted into them ourselves. We as players will be able to become apart of the games more than we ever have before, as we take first person view to a whole new level. Our technology is advancing so rapidly, that I felt E3 was just a glimpse into the future, as we could someday even make it to full-dive virtual reality. E3 2016 showcased a lot of new games and advancements in gaming but when it comes to virtual reality, nothing comes close.
The future of gaming in the end relies on the support of gamers. And to be able to reward our patience with wonderfully developed VR systems, grants us only excitement for what the future has in store. We can expect 2016 and 2017 to be huge years in gaming as we take the leap into virtual reality.
Check out my tour of the show floor at E3 below, and please feel free to comment and tell us what you think about when it comes to the future of gaming!