The gaming industry has been experiencing significant growth in recent years, and experts predict that this trend will continue well into the future. With advancements in technology and an increasing number of players around the world, the market size of the gaming industry is expected to reach great new heights by 2024. In this interview with TechBullion, Bartosz Skwarczek, CEO of G2A Capital Group, shares with us, more insights into the 2024 gaming industry.
2024 is fast approaching. What emerging cybersecurity trends and challenges can we anticipate for 2024, and how should organizations prepare to address them effectively?
In the realm of cybersecurity trends for the upcoming year, we will primarily see the emphasis put on selected key areas, including heightened attention to data privacy and compliance, the integration of AI and machine learning for advanced threat detection, the implementation of a zero trust security model, and enhancing endpoint security for remote workplaces. Much focus is also starting to be placed on increasing awareness and training company employees to stay vigilant against any potential cyberattack. Establishing a security culture within the organization as part of a broader strategy, conducting simulated attacks, and regular training sessions elevate employees’ awareness, thus mitigating the risks associated with cybercriminal activities. Here at G2A.COM, we have highly trained and committed internal teams for tech, cybersecurity and fraud prevention. They have already created plans to address potential threats up until 2024. We have noticed an increase in the number and sophistication of cybercrimes – with the most recent case of KeePass and fake ads being a perfect, albeit scary example – which caused the global fraud rate in the industry to increase to 3.6% in 2022 and growing constantly throughout 2023, with no intention to stop in 2024. G2A.COM’s comprehensive approach to security allowed us to keep the anti-fraud rate at the level of 0.39%, ten times less than the industry average.
What advancements and changes do experts predict in AI generation for video games in 2024, and how might these developments impact the gaming industry and user experiences?
AI is the most transformative technology force we have seen since the inception of the internet – and a perfect storm is coming. The influence of the most recent generation of generative AI tools will start to really take off in the game industry in 2024. It will be used, for instance, to generate dynamic storylines, develop more lifelike, real-world in-game characters that can talk with players rather than merely read lines from scripts, and help construct enormous gaming worlds and landscapes. We have seen such tools and solutions already being deployed to market – examples include Scenario.gg., Promethean AI, and Leonardo AI. The game modding community is also actively starting to make use of this technology, most prominently with mods for The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, where several AI engines work together to create characters that can respond to voice prompts (questions and statements) made by the player in real-time.
How will consolidation/acquisition trends shape the gaming industry in 2024, such as Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard?
In the U.S., investors sit on 300 billion dollars in cash to invest and are now looking for targets. On the business front, we’ve witnessed a wave of mergers and acquisitions, some of which were genuinely epic in scope, like Microsoft’s $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard. After initial hurdles with the regulatory committees, the deal went through on October 13th and it is now official. This is probably going to continue in and beyond 2024–personally, I’m waiting for EA to be acquired by one of the biggest tech companies.
Will retro gaming be more mainstream in 2024?
Retro gaming has gained popularity in the last decade, and many businesses—including Atari or Square Enix —have seized the chance to repackage ancient games for a modern audience. This shows that traditional gameplay can last just as long as treasured old music and movies. Another significant trend will be the remake of games that were popular with past generations, such as the upcoming Final Fantasy VII Rebirth, which is a common strategy when operating in a bear market. Another wave is connected with retro-inspired games like the boomer shooter genre (with the recent Warhammer 40.000: Boltgun or the recently-released new map pack for the grandfathers of the genre, Doom and Doom 2) or indie titles, like Terraria or Stardew Valley. They have recently gained such popularity and recognition, that many companies – G2A.COM included – dedicate entire seasons specifically for retro and retro-inspired games.
The gaming industry is booming, but gamers are feeling the pinch when it comes to increasing prices of video games and gaming consoles. Should consumers expect to see game prices continue to rise?
The rising prices of high-end games have been a point G2A.COM has been addressing even back in 2020 when the talks of increasing the price of games to $70 started to gain traction. I still believe that this notion is going against the gaming consumers, especially the new generation, as the change may exclude them from taking part in the gaming adventure. On the other hand, this may be an opportunity for the smaller, indie studios and their creations to gain popularity, as their games tend to be significantly less expensive than big AAA releases. We can see this trend even now on G2A.COM, where the most popular game of this year has been Project: Zomboid, an indie game from a couple of years back that is rocking the charts right now.
With Hollywood turning major video game franchises like The Last of Us, Five Nights at Freddy’s, Mario, and others, are viewers turning into gamers, or does the video game industry need to do more to bridge the gap?
Apart from relying on a well-known or cult franchise, the gaming adaptations have an important role of being one part of an Intellectual Property ecosystem – the game is no longer a game but you can follow the heroes or stories from the same universe across other mediums. All these additional products have a notable impact on the number of copies sold or spiking the interest of the basic game (the best examples being Cyberpunk 2077 and corresponding Netflix’s Edgerunners, League of Legends and Arcane series from the same platform, and The Last Of Us game plus series on HBO). We can see this trend being capitalized on with more premieres coming in 2024 and beyond – Borderlands, Metal Gear Solid, Portal, and God of War. Sometimes, though, it seems that the tropes and trends that work for a movie- or TV-only productions don’t seem to find similar approval from the gaming audience, the best example of which can be the Halo series made in 2022 for the Paramount+ platform, which gathered positive reviews from the TV and movie fans audience, but was widely criticized by video game enthusiasts. There is a thin line the movie creators must walk on with connecting the video game tropes and movie tropes, and more often than not – especially recently – movie producers manage to do it.