I think back to when I played Sonic the Hedgehog on my Sega Megadrive as a kid. Even earlier, playing games I can't remember on the ZX Spectrum. Not in a million years would I have thought I would be sat writing this now, realising how much the gaming industry has grown. From amassing over 100k of Gamerscore points on Xbox Live, before defecting to the PlayStation in the later generations - it's remarkable just how far we've come as a gaming community. From basic side scrolling games, and text-only RPGs to fully immersive games like Skyrim, Fallout, Final Fantasy; you name it. W3K Gaming is just a slither, the tiniest particle in a booming industry that thrives and entices some of the most famous names in Hollywood to do voice acting, motion capture, or both. Famous streamers like Timthetatman, Tfue, Lululuvely - all people who have perfected their craft as gamers on Call of Duty, Apex, or simply just as entertainers. It's incredibly to see a new wave of 'internet celebrity' beyond just the gold and silver screens. The pioneering minds behind gaming ventured into the wastelands with an idea that has taken over the world, becoming a bustling metropolis. Without a doubt.
Where parents were once telling their children to get outdoors and climb trees, ride their bikes and worried about their kids spending too much time in front of the screen; some now champion their young families to gaming tournaments and eSports with millions and millions of dollars in cash prizes and hardware given away as prizes.
Not least of all, the industry isn't showing signs of slowing from an outreach point of view. What used to be a question of "Nintendo or Sega?" amongst playgrounds and circles of friends had grown to be "PC, Xbox, Playstation?" The competition used to be in who owned what and the arguments ensued as to which console was the best, or who was the best player. Cross platform gaming is becoming more and more well known and celebrated. Games like Apex, Warzone, Destiny; they are all encouraging people to stop the in-fighting of which hardware is the best and making people's play do the talking instead. Competitive and Cooperative. It's nice to see the walls coming down so I can finally have a game with my friends from the Xbox days who didn't join me on my switch to PlayStation. Platforms like Discord allow for slick, easy voice, text and even video chat. The industry is just making it easier and easier to have pain free games regardless of where you are in the world or what hardware you sport. Personally, I've spent the most time on Apex Cross Platform games with a hint of Warzone but it really begs the question when it'll extend to more than just the typical FPS shooters. All I know is that it is a good time to be a gamer.