If we are to believe everything we read in the popular press, gaming is evolving into the most important, popular and influential leisure activity of the new decade. It is certainly the most lucrative, and the Daily Telegraph reported last year that in the UK, the gaming market generates more revenue than music and movies put together.
The comparison is not an idle one. Look at the music or film business and you can see it is extremely siloed according to different nations and cultures. Movies have Hollywood, Bollywood, Anime, Jidaigeki, to name a few. In music, there are even more categories from rock to classical to K-pop to Carnatic.
Gaming, however, has developed in a far more multicultural age. When it comes to numbers, the biggest influencers are in Asia, and specifically South Korea, China, Japan and Thailand. In 2017, the industry generated more than $51 billion revenue in Asia Pacific. Compare that with around $27 million in each of North America and Europe and you begin to see why Asian culture is such a big influence on the games played across the world. That is the why – let’s next examine the how.
Taking control in eSport
The growing popularity of eSport in the western world is becoming big news, especially with big names like Joe Montana getting involved in promotion. However, in countries like Japan and China, eSport’s popularity is old news. The announcement back in 2017 that eSport would be part of the 2022 Asian Games only served to stoke fires that were already burning. The consequence is that some of the biggest eSport tournaments are likely to find their way to Asian shores. For example, this year’s League of Legends World Championship will be held in China, travel restrictions permitting.
Placing your bet on the roll of the dice
If there’s one genre that can equal esport in terms of growth, it is casino gaming. You might think this is an area where western influences hold sway. After all, Las Vegas remains the biggest hub in the world, and countries like UK and Malta are the most popular locations for new online providers. However, Macau is known as the Vegas of the East and has contributed to how casino gaming is evolving. Dice-based games are growing in popularity across the world, and any easy way to learn how to play sic bo online at a Thai casino online is certain to attract attention. One of the most popular games in Macau, it is rapidly overtaking craps as the dice game of choice in western casinos.
Educating on different Asian cultures
For too long, representation of Asian cultures in video games has been a jumble of Chinese, Japanese and South Korean that looks bizarre to Asian gamers. Now, at last, there is a chance to set things right. Honor of Kings is the world’s most popular mobile esports game and was initially developed specifically for the Chinese market. 80 percent of the game’s characters are based on real people from Chinese history and academic experts worked alongside the developers to ensure accuracy. It’s a powerful tool for educating the world about China’s 5,000 years of cultural history.