Latest Trends in The Game Industry
A fairly recent practice, since the mid-1990s, of the video game industry is the rise of game players as developers of game content. The rise of video game players as fourth-party developers of game content allows for more open source models of game design, development and engineering. Game players create user modifications (mods), which in some cases become just as popular, maybe even more popular, as the original game created. An example of this is the game Counter-strike, which began as a mod of the video game Half-Life and eventually became a published game in its own right that was very successful.
While this "community of modifiers" may only add up to approximately 1% of a particular game's user base, the number of those involved will grow as more games offer modifying opportunities (such as, by releasing source code) and as the international community of gamers rise. According to Ben Sawyer, as many as 600,000 established online game community developers will exist by 2012. This will effectively add a new component to the game industry value chain and if it continues to mature it will integrate itself into the overall industry.
The industry has seen a shift towards games with multiplayer. A larger percentage of games on all types of platforms include some type of competitive online multiplayer.
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