In 1972 when the Magnavox Odyssey was released, nobody in the world, let alone the gaming industry, could have predicted how gaming was going to evolve in the next half-century. The games, hardware, and controllers were incredibly primitive back then, with only very simple ideas programmed onto the console. It even required additional paraphernalia such as dice, cards, and paper money to enhance what was being seen on screen, because developers did not have the technology to display everything they wanted onto the game cartridges.
The Maganox was expensive, the launch price of $100 being equivalent to around $600 in today’s money. The console sold reasonably well, around 350,000 units. However, when compared to the PlayStation 2, the most popular console of the modern era, you really start to see how gaming has caught on. It is estimated that the PS2 sold more than 155 million units worldwide, numbers that the developers and engineers working on the Maganox in the early 70s would never have believed possible.
Given how far the industry has come, with the new generation of consoles, and the rise of Esports, where fans can now use Bovada sports betting to place bets on their favorite Esports teams, we have begun to see how people can now make a living just from gaming. Again, fifty years ago this sort of thing would never have even been contemplated.
The past 12 months have seen a lot of exciting releases, and with the release schedule for 2022 starting to take shape, we already have a good idea of what we have to look forward to as well. Let’s look first look back, before taking an exciting glance into the future as well.
Within the last 12 months, we have been spoiled rotten by the two biggest game console manufacturers, as Sony released the PlayStation 5, while Microsoft finally gave us the Xbox Series X and Series S. The previous consoles, the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One had been going for eight years each, and while both were great consoles, they were both in need of an update. So with so many people being locked inside during 2020, it was a great source of relief that two brand spanking new consoles were introduced during such a difficult time.
Despite the expensive RRP price, both consoles appear to be selling well. Sony estimate to have moved 10 million units already, which has certainly contributed to the 26% rise in operating profit in the last three months. They hope to sell another 14.8 million by next March. Microsoft, on the other hand, are lagging behind slightly, with sales closer to the 6.5 million mark. However, given the Christmas period is fast approaching, we anticipated these figures to increase drastically over the coming months.
With new consoles being released, it is customary for pre-existing game series to release a new title, which takes full advantage of the upgrades of technology. One of the best new releases of this year has been Hitman 3 (which is confusingly the 10th game in the series) which was released on all platforms. Players are in control of Agent 47, as they have to sneak around in a number of impressive settings, such as a Berlin rave and a huge English mansion, carrying out assassinations as discreetly as possible.
Another new game we loved is Resident Evil Village. The latest entry in a long line of Resident Evil games, this new release was one of the most frightening games of all time. While it was incredibly enjoyable, it did leave many players struggling to sleep after playing it.
If you wanted a slightly more relaxed and family-friendly vibe, then Super Mario 3D on the Nintendo Switch was another great 2021 release. You know what to expect from Mario games, but this newest edition combines fun gameplay with state-of-the-art graphics.
If you’re a fan of the Harry Potter books, films, or game series, then Hogwarts Legacy will be just the game for you. Expect to be casting plenty of spells and running away from trolls, werewolves and other magical creatures in this one.
Gotham Knights is also due in 2022, set in the world of Batman and his foes, but without the Caped Crusader himself. Instead, you’ll play Batgirl, Robin, and a host of other sidekick characters, to help restore order to Gotham City.
Other exciting releases we’ve got coming up in the next 12 months are Gran Turismo 7, The Callisto Protocol, Pragmata, and Bomb Rush Cyberpunk. Whatever type of game you’re into, and whatever console you’re currently playing on, there will certainly be something for you to look forward to in the next few months.