Welcome to the final chapter in our grand preview of all things gaming in 2018. So far we’ve discussed how Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo plan to make their systems the owns to own in the new year as well as why the PC might be the most well-rounded platform out there. Which of course brings us to the final part of this thing we call the gaming industry – mobile gaming. Still a relatively new side of the business, mobile games often get a bad rap from (and I hate this term) core gamers, who think that because the games are smaller and lean more towards casual audiences that their importance is reduced. Well any gamer worth their salt knows that there are some pretty darn good games that you can play on your phone or tablet our there and the year ahead has plenty of reasons to check out these smaller experiences.
It might be an odd way to kick off this article, but by their very nature, mobile games are hard to preview. Release dates are often in flux and can change with very short notice and new announcements and launches can seemingly come out of the blue. A lot of this is owed to the fact that this segment of the industry is still relatively new and the barrier of entry is relatively low for new developers who might have over/underestimated development times. All of that means that coming up with a rock-solid list of upcoming mobile games is a challenge to say the least. That being said, there’s already well over a 100 games we know will be joining the Google Play and iOS stores over the next year and countless more waiting in the wings.
While many of these games are small titles from developers you’ll have never heard of, there are plenty of major titles making their way to your phone from very well-known series. In fact the first half of the year will have mobile titles in the World of Warships. Tom Clancy, RuneScape, Shadowgun and Baldur’s Gate franchises to keep us busy. We also have some very early details on new mobile games in the Harry Potter, Star Wars, Assassin’s Creed and Pac-Man series which all should get more information revealed in the next few months. All in all, the support of mobile games from big publishers and series is nothing to sneeze at.
Like the PC we previewed a little bit earlier, mobile games are also an excellent place to get your hands on new ideas and experimental titles that might never have seen the light of day on a platform with higher development costs or more restrictive content guidelines. Nearly every time you log onto your digital store of choice you run the chance of find a hidden gem and that’s part of what makes mobile gaming so exciting, that there’s always something new to discover. Add to that the fact that companies know there’s lots of money to be made in mobile gaming (just look at the success of Pokémon Go) which means that new, interesting ideas are always on the horizon, often for very little (or no) cost to try them out.
Admittedly previewing the mobile gaming space for a whole year is a challenging, if not impossible task but from what we can already see, 2018 will be another solid year for gaming on our phones and tablets. One last thing I want to mention is that, mobile technology is advancing incredibly rapidly and the phones we will be carrying a year from now will likely be more powerful than our current models by several factors. This of course translates to games that better take advantage of the available technology and can offer us bigger and better experiences. And who knows, maybe someday soon mobile games won’t be seen as ‘gaming’s little brother’ anymore.