How the Internet is driving an interactive revolution in gaming

The net has hybridized computer and console gaming experiences, opening a massive opportunity for entrepreneurs. Photo: EVO Championships

WASHINGTON, June 26, 2013 – The fact that gaming and the Internet have ended up hand-in-hand shouldn’t be a surprise at all. As both a gamer and a net geek, I can personally attest that both activities tend to draw a shockingly similar crowd. That’s especially true when you get into communities that have been built around the nuts and bolts of the graphic display and programming languages that each runs on.

At one time, gaming lived only within arcades. At some point it moved largely to consoles that could operate from home. At that same time, we saw a rise in computer-based games that got millions of gamers accustomed to experiencing their favorite fantasy worlds from their desktops and laptops as opposed to sitting in front of a television screen. Then came the Internet.

The net has forged a sort of hybrid between the computer and console gaming experiences. It combines the intense graphical display that the latter is known for with the software-as-a-service orientation that the former has grown into.

Virtual reality portals such as SecondLife and There have developed followings well into the millions as happy gamers log on regularly to create, customize and experience worlds of their own design and choosing. Other games such as The Sims™ series have garnered similar acclaim and popular success.

In addition to games that can be played online, the Internet has added a dimension to gameplay that even enhances the console experience. Gamers around the globe can now interact with one another via wireless internet connections. In games such as Tekken, a popular fighting game, players can arrange death matches with opponents from as close as across town to as far away as another continent.

This new level of connectivity has brought about global ranking systems and created massive interconnected communities. Each year, EVO hosts the world championships of gaming. Many of the opponents who meet face to face at this annual event have already battled each other numerous times remotely due to their ability to arrange games over the Internet.

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One of the largest and most profitable online gaming niches is online poker gaming. This comes as no surprise, as the nature of poker is very interactive to begin with. Through the Internet, passionate gamers are exposed to a seemingly limitless pool of teammates and opponents to enjoy their favorite games with. The ability to play with live human beings online has been noted as being much more engaging than playing simulated computer opponents.

Now the internet is beginning to influence the evolution of conquest-style games as well. The God of War franchise, arguably the most popular conquest game series in the last decade, recently released God of War Ascension, the 4th installment in the series. For the first time, individual players were given the ability to team up in conquest with players from around the world. And it has all been made possible because of the Internet.

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