11 gaming trends the industry can lose or embrace in 2018

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It will be busy in gaming in the year of our lord Beyoncé 2018, but here are gaming trends everyone, from publisher to enthusiast, needs to embrace or let go of in 2018.

2017 is done and over with and now is the time for the games industry to look forward to how to keep things rocking and rolling around the industry tree at the end of 2018. There were a lot of fads in 2017 from the Nintendo Switch to loot boxes. Let’s take a look at what gaming trends should be continued and which need to be let go in 2018.

Embrace: Cross-Platform play

This is mostly aimed at one console manufacturer in particular at this point: Sony’s PlayStation division. There are obvious reasons why not every Switch port will play with PlayStation or Xbox games. There are obvious reasons why not every PC game will play with console games. However, the time of “you can only play with players on this console” needs to die. Though, for gamers, this will also become a game of “be careful what you wish for.”

Why can’t the Switch play with other console and PC players? Because whenever Xbox or Windows are involved, players create an Xbox account in the setup. In turn, this increases the Monthly Active User counts Xbox touts as a part of their ecosystem approach they have used to stave off investors ready to kill the branch every fiscal year as a drain on Microsoft resources.

As Sony makes its own shift towards using MAUs as an active model approach to talking about player engagement, they will not be so quick to allow the cross-play conventions Microsoft has created to be imparted in their ecosystem. What is most likely to happen is they will expand their PlayStation branding on PC to make it so that PlayStation Now is not only available there, but the PlayStation Network account allows cross-play to exist.

Xbox Everywhere is a program ahead of its time because the manufacturer behind it needed to bolster the numbers they had by using a new convention to pull players in. Sony will not be so quick to let them boost their numbers without some compromise. As such, it will seem novel when Sony inevitably says “cross-play only when you log into your PlayStation account” in their dashboard on PC.

That’s the likely future of cross-play because that’s the current reality as it stands. That said, eventually, all of these walls will break down and the investor-focused way gaming is currently approached from manufacturers will shift. As more disruptions enter the marketplace and show a different way things can be done, it will have to change to an approach about what makes sense for publishers who are creating their own server environments that would facilitate play between their entire player base.

Let’s leave this archaic approach to the past and look to the future. Speaking of which, there is one fandom that refuses to let go of the past we need to talk about…