Online experience May Vary: Technology’s Influence Over Online Gaming
Remember back in the good ol’ days when online play just jumped onto the gaming scene? Titles like Socom, StarCraft and Halo ruled supreme. Well, that is when major lag wasn’t wrecking our games and you could actually understand people when they spoke into their headset. Wait, did we say “the good ol’ days?” We meant the dark days.
But look at where we are now! 60FPS, perfect connections, great graphics and matchmaking that is not only quick but also intuitive. Well… again maybe not, but we’ve come a long way since the original Halo and the days of Blood Gulch. And the reason we’ve come so far is rapidly advancing technology paired with an industry that rakes in more money every year. That’s why we’re going to go over some advancements we’ve seen since the beginning of gaming and see just how far we’ve come. Plug in your LAN cable and get ready to take a step into the past. First, we’re looking at connectivity.
Let’s bow are heads in respect and take a moment of silence for dial-up internet. “Oh, great. It’s making that stupid modem sound again.” Dial-up was the first step in online play and boy did it not end fast enough. Despite a 2015 article by Time that states there were still 2.3 million active subscribers, we’re willing to bet most of those people aren’t using that connection to play Overwatch, Call of Duty or Super Smash Bros. for the Wii U. At least… we certainly hope they aren’t.
As options for online connectivity branched out, we saw a movement toward wireless routers or broadband internet. This change gave us faster internet connections and faster internet meant more games and a better overall experience. Plus, now we can understand every word that little kid is saying when he cusses us out in front of 16 other people.
Not only a byproduct of faster internet speeds but also smarter game design, modern matchmaking is leagues above what we used to have to sit through. A few lobby options have turned into countless, lobbies are able to link players up from different countries and the process, in general is much faster as people drop in within seconds instead of minutes. We can see upgrades to games like StarCraft, Call of Duty and even classic casino online games that operate from an internet site rather than an icon that on your desktop.
Casino games, especially poker and all its variants, have taken this concept of pairing players together and simplified the entire process to a degree that is quite noticeable if you’ve been around since the beginning – and that was only back in the ’90s!
Resolution and FPS
FPS, or frames per second, is a pretty big hot button topic these days. But back when online games were fresh on the market, we were just happy to be playing with other people with a minimal amount of lag. That’s all changed as players are seeing more and more games that are rendered at 60 FPS and demand to have that same level of smoothness delivered to every title they play. Pair this with resolution the clarity at which an image can be displayed, and maximizing the two can be quite taxing on a processor, but it gives players with poor eyesight an even playing ground.
Polygon wrote an article on why frame rate and resolution are so important and you should be sure to check it out, but when it comes to online titles, most people are either looking for competition or camaraderie. If more people are able to enjoy playing online with their friends because of these upgrades, that enhances both of those facets. It’s a win-win that will only improve the overall quality of not just online play but games in general.
With eSports being as popular as they are you can bet that these improvements will continue to roll out with each gaming generation. Sooner or later we could see virtual reality dominate online games bringing people miles apart closer than ever before. But until then we’re just going to have to settle for flat screen TVs, high-res monitors and blazing fast connections. Why can’t the future be now?!