This month Redscout went to E3, the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo, to scout the latest gaming trends and innovations. At the leading conference for video gaming, we saw first-hand how our experiences are shaped by four different influences: curiosity, imagination, skepticism and nostalgia. Here’s what stood out and inspired us:
To grab the attention of a hardcore gamer, it’s not enough just to make standard video games anymore. It requires technology with the ability to transport players beyond their current reality. By delivering a whole-body sensory experience, brands like Oculus and 360 Dome.Pro (our personal favorite) were standouts by tapping into the crowd’s collective sense of curiosity and wonder.
People want play to spark their imaginations, letting fantasies take over without any rules or boundaries. Games like WBIE’s LEGO Dimensions (a Redscout client) and Ubisoft’s Trials of the Blood Dragon do not confine their narratives to discrete worlds of specific IP or thematic material. Rather, they enable total freedom, encouraging their players to experiment with the random and unexpected.
Games can tell us interesting things about how we feel about current cultural issues. By serving up a postmodern environment that’s just slightly different–albeit darker–than our day-to-day, games like Sony’s Detroit: Become Human and Ubisoft’s Watch Dogs 2 are showcasing the darker possibilities of today’s socioeconomic realities, providing an outlet for players’ skepticism through a means to combat the system.
We all love reliving our favorite stories and characters that we enjoyed as a kid, but it would seem this sentiment is even stronger among the gaming community in light of this year’s spotlight on the classics. From Ubisoft’s new South Park adventure to Nintendo’s fresh take on Zelda, publishers are appealing to today’s generation of gamers by tapping into a collective sense of shared nostalgia.
The gaming world is about more than gamers. It’s a unique portal into trends that are driving and influencing culture, giving marketers more insight into how to engage consumers and change the way they experience brands in the world.
Colin Chow, Alex Cripe and Charlotte Baxter contributed to Redscout's event presence and reporting.