This article will begin by stating that there is nothing fundamentally wrong with gaming, and you’d be a killjoy to have opposing perspectives on it. Everyone needs to unwind, and there are worse ways to do it, like drinking, doing drugs, or engaging in online arguments with random people. Most British people who play games do it on consoles, laptops, and cellphones—Brits who game play for, on average, 10 hours each week. Today, millions of people watch professional gamers battle against one another.
One of the aspirations of young males, along with being a football player and rock star, is to become a professional gamer. Additionally, Britain has a long tradition of producing top-notch video games, and the sector contributes approximately £3 billion to the UK economy.
Gaming has made way for streaming and several other opportunities that serve as careers for game lovers and pros. The big names in technology are finally beginning to recognise that consumers like playing games just as much as watching TV. Customers will soon have the option to stream video games thanks to a new service from Google. Netflix is expanding its own selection of games, and gaming is carving its way out of being a subculture. It is going mainstream, and several people wonder why there are many British people in the gaming sector as gamers and developers.
The British Gaming Scene
The video game industry is worth over £150 billion, and although countries like China, the USA, and Japan are clear leaders, the UK gaming sector is also hugely dominant. The UK gaming sector employs over 20,000 people and is estimated to be worth around £5 billion. The tale of British video games is one of magical creativity, irreverent humour, and the coding abilities of some remarkable individuals, from a handful of amateurs coding in their free time to enormous teams, big budgets, and million-dollar profits. You might need a history lesson to understand this better.
The UK computer business started in the early 1980s with a slew of low-cost computers you had to program yourself. The ZX-81, ZX-Spectrum, and BBC Micro inspired a new generation of game developers. Many designed games professionally, established their own companies or worked for large game makers. This was unique to the United Kingdom at the time and was regarded as the bedroom coding scene as it saw the emergence of talents who were creating game software from the comfort of their homes. Also, you can get free spins when gambling at online casinos using different modern gadgets.
Many European countries did not benefit from this surge as they encountered fewer game creators. By the end of the 1980s, several northern cities in the United Kingdom had more developers than the entire country of Germany. These studios also created a sub-industry of game composers, game artists, motion capture businesses, and specialised language translation providers. The United Kingdom ended up with a large number of game-related businesses. Many initial enterprises are still in operation or have generated new offshoot businesses. Many titles that appear to be from American or Japanese brands are really created in the United Kingdom.
To capitalise on the wealth of local talent, big multinational game production firms like EA, Sega, and Sony acquired sizable game studios in the UK. The majority of the people afterwards entered worldwide firms. As a result, British game developers are anywhere you can imagine, from California to Japan.
Games That Illustrate the Evolution of Video Games Among British People
British people are heavy gamers today because they were the earliest market for video games, while many other countries didn’t have the computers to create games. The trend for video games in the UK didn’t stop at the 8-bit computers. The 16-bit computers that arrived in the late 80s were a new form of an experiment for game developers as they could create new wonders with them and were well ahead of the competition. Since it was clear that the 8-bit home computer era was coming to an end just as the 16-bit era was beginning to rise, software developers employed directly by software businesses were often given a 16-bit ST or Amiga to begin polishing their talents.
The demo scenes for the ST and Amiga were both thriving, with home programmers who had no connection to the software industry producing polished technical demos that aimed to break records or find new ways to get the hardware to perform feats that even the machine’s designers would have thought were impossible. This era led to the release of games like Barbarian, Populous, Lemmings, etc. A James Bond game titled GoldenEye 007 came in 1997, and we had Grand Theft Auto about a month after– all from British game development companies.
Today, Rockstar North (formerly DMA Design Limited), a British company, is one of the most successful game companies. GTA V has made more money than any other form of media sold, including movies, books, or music.
British Influence in the Video Game Industry
In the UK, more than half of people play video games today and for several hours a week on average. Women currently make up 42% of all players–never before have video games’ attraction and market size been so widespread. The British have continued to lead the market with their originality and game-creation skills. In some respects, mobile gaming marks a return to when eccentric small games were made by bedroom programmers like Matthew Smith and eventually became beloved British classics as start-ups are looking to produce what could be the next big game.
Since the advent of mobile app marketplaces, game creators have had months to conceive a concept, create a design, and self-publish it. Official figures from 2014 report that over 2,000 video game firms support the £2.5 billion British market. With the introduction of tax breaks, the government has now recognised the importance of the video game business. Additionally, British schools now require computer science, encouraging students to use their creativity and work in the video game business. The British video game industry is in a class of its own, and the British people have turned out to be vast lovers of the sector.
Disadvantages of the Video Game Industry
Although the video game industry has been very decent to the British, some still argue that it could be better. There’s an age-old fear that still claims that gaming promotes violence. Some games are known to have dark scenes that prompt violent acts – GTA is one of those games. It is, however, not a very substantial argument to draw straight lines between gaming and violence. Here are some cons to note:
- Gamers can be addicted to gaming.
- Some games promote gambling and some other illicit acts.
- Lack of concentration and focus.
- Social disconnection, etc.
Video games are growing into a culture of their own, and it is evident in the recent scarcity of next-generation consoles that gamers are buying into the sector. They provide much-needed relaxation to players, and the British video game sector significantly contributes to its evolution. The video game industry is evolving towards PC and mobile gaming, and we are seeing the most mobile games we have ever seen. Also, consoles seem like they are going to be around for a while, while we have much more promising developments.