Published: Wed, October 25, 2017
Tech | By Dwayne Harmon

The Most Played Mobile Game Genres in 2016

The Most Played Mobile Game Genres in 2016

 The term "viral" might fit better for content shared on social media but it might be safe to say that smartphones spread in a similar way. A decade ago, Apple released its iPhone, which was not the first handset with a large touchscreen and enhanced multimedia capabilities - but it was the first to be cool enough for everyone to want one. But the iPhone itself was not the most important innovation Apple has put forward in 2007 - it was the concept of the "app" that brought forth the most fundamental change in our world. Over the last decade, smartphones became the most popular pocket-sized entertainment devices, and apps, the most popular form of software. And this shift is most evident in the case of the gaming industry.

According to Newzoo, mobile games reached a market share close to that of consoles and exceeding that of PC games in 2016. The company expects mobile gaming to grow further and overtake consoles by 1% this year, widening the gap even further in the coming years. But it's interesting to see the types of games played, and the demographics of the players, to see why mobile gaming will grab the dominant position on the market.

According to a study published last December by Verto Analytics, puzzle games, AR games, action/adventure titles, and casino slots were the most popular mobile game genres in 2016. The numbers are a bit skewed, though, by the effect of Pokémon GO, released last summer, and the availability of Vegas Palms casino online in Europe. Social slots are especially popular in North America, Asia, and Australia, but in Europe, their position is offset by the free gaming options available at the Vegas Palms and its likes. With its large and diverse game library, the Vegas Palms goes beyond what social casinos have to offer. And the possibility of playing its games for real also adds to the excitement of players.

Traditional video games, played on consoles and PCs, are usually intended for a relatively young male audience. Smartphone games, in turn, reach out to a much wider range of players. Puzzle games, for example, are predominantly played by a female audience aged between 25 and 54, a demographic that traditional games are ill-equipped to handle. Since puzzle games - both brain puzzles and "match-3" type games - are the most played genres on smartphones, they bring more to the table than traditional games on traditional platforms ever could.

There are currently over 3 billion active smartphones out there, and their numbers will continue to grow in the coming years. This means more potential players and a bigger market share for smartphone games in the coming years.

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