Gaming communities need to stop the hostility towards ‘mobile gamers’
If you get your panties in a bunch about mobile gaming, then you are part of the problem my friend. It might be time for some deep introspection on why PC and Console elitists might be souring the experience for gamers starting off on mobile. The hostility towards mobile as a platform is unfounded and the blind hatred is evident through vitriolic comments on forums and popular blogs such as Kotaku, Gamespot, and C-Net. The community as a whole suffers due to these needless rifts and constant bickering. I think it needs to be drilled into our collective psyche that the devices we choose to play on do not in any way make us superior or inferior to our fellow gamers.
The reason mobile gaming gets a bad rap is often because of the glut of ‘shovelware’ games on playstore and iOS. These low quality, low budget games make it difficult for better games to rise on top or distinguish themselves on playstore or iOS and gamers have to wade through review sites or through numerous titles to find something worthwhile. Another reason that mobile gaming is not taken seriously is the ‘Freemium’ model followed by mobile games. In some cases, developers make the games ‘pay to win’ or deprive free players of essential items in an effort to monetize. This strategy often backfires and causes them to lose goodwill and the ecosystem as a whole faces a lot of backlash. There are however genuinely good games for mobile that create authentic and fun experiences within the limitations of the platform.
Market projections from Newzoo: Mobile will generate 36.9 Billion
Mobile games aren’t perfect, far from it actually but it’s a good place to start for those who do not want to invest a lot and yet want to have fun playing and more importantly it is here to stay. The limitations such as screen size, graphics, and controls aside there are still many fun titles to play on mobile as well as a few that might cater to serious gamers. Games such as Infinity blade, Ravensword: Shadowlands, Ingress and Delta T amongst others cater to those looking for more complex gameplay on the platform.
As long as developers can make money without making games riddled with microtransactions they should be encouraged and supported. It is also important to be open to experimentation by mobile developers so that they can come up with better, more diverse games rather than cancerous candy crush clones.
Platform agnosticism is the way to go so you don’t deprive yourself of excellent gaming experiences and restrict exploring games based on unfounded biases. The basic adage ‘don’t knock it until you’ve tried it’ is something that gamers should adhere by instead of pigeonholing themselves into ‘types’. This can help tearing down negative stereotypes about gaming culture and help bring new gamers into the fold and feel more accepted rather than alienated.