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It's a brand new year, and there a few interesting trends we're keeping an eye on as 2016 shapes up. For starters, the Portable Steam Machine may create a unique space for itself in the market. Since Apple devices like the iPad took over the mobile scene, there haven't really been any portable games designed around a controller input other than Nintendo 3DS - and its control scheme is unique enough to make porting to other systems difficult. The Portable Steam Machine, on the other hand, is built to play on both a handheld and a computer and it has a built in controller that unlocks diffferent avenues for game designers wishing to be successful in multiple sections of the market. We're also keeping an eye on the rapid acquisitions of non-Chinese game developers by Chinese corporations like Tencent and Snail Games. The quiet but rapid rush of acquisition we've seen over the last year has now reached a phase where it needs to pay off, and Chinese companies need to be more strategic about their investments. But they've been largely more hands-off than Western firms like EA when they acquire games, and the relationship between Riot Games and Tencent (which recently acquired 100% ownership) will serve as a bellwether to see how this shakes out. On similar lines, China recently lifted its ban on consoles, so we may see new Chinese game developers form to build games in their new console market. We're interested in whether those games remain in China or become localized and exported to other countries, bringing another new voice and new cultural perspective to game design. Finally, we hope to see whether the Western acquisition bubble will pay off. Microsoft and Activision invested billions of dollars into acquiring Minecraft and King Games (Candy Crush), respectively - even more than Disney paid for the acquisition of Marvel or Lucasfilm.
If these investments pay off, expect to see a change in the valuation of all game development companies - but if not, expect to see investor funding dry up for such huge acquisitions.
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Tagged under: Games Industry,Game Industry,Gaming Industry,Future,Predictions,Future Games,Future Gaming,Game Business,Games Business,Gaming Business,Steam Machine,Steam,Portable Steam Machine,Mobile Games,Game Development,Chinese Game Industry,Chinese Publisher,Chinese Developer,Tencent,Riot Games,Chinese Console Market,Minecraft Acquisition,King Acquisition,Candy Crush,Candy Crush Acquisition,Microsoft Minecraft,Activision King,Extra Credits
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