A computer or video game is an electronically interactive video game that entails interaction with a human user interface or physical input device, such as a keyboard, mouse, joystick, or laser motion sensitive device to produce visual feedback to the game user. Video games are available for sale over the Internet and through mail order catalogs. In most cases, video games are targeted at specific audiences such as children, teens, and adults.
There are several manufacturers of computer and video game hardware that compete in the market for the rights to develop, manufacture, market, and sell video games. The market for video games is estimated to be in the tens of billions of dollars annually with the majority of this revenue coming from personal computer users. Although it is difficult to determine the exact number of computers that are in use throughout the world, it is safe to estimate that at least a quarter of all American households own one or more video game systems.
Over the past decade, the emergence of computer games has lead to an increase in casual gaming as well as an increased interest in sophisticated and high-end video gaming for those who are not part of the gaming elite. Computer games are now regularly featured in television shows, movies, and commercials. In fact, television programming is even beginning to incorporate video gaming into its programming. In addition, some companies are beginning to offer broadband Internet access for home computer users that will allow them to play video games while they are away from home.
As a result of the widespread appeal of video gaming, new formats and technological improvements are constantly being introduced. For example, the conversion of CD-ROMs to DVD-R files created a new opportunity for home computer users to access their favorite video games. In addition, the advent of online gaming communities and related technologies has expanded the ability to play video games with other members of the community anywhere in the world. Video game hardware, such as personal computers and gaming consoles have also experienced dramatic improvements over the past decade, resulting in the portable and compact development of handheld gaming devices such as the PSP and the Nintendo DS.
The explosion of online gaming sites and communities has led to the development of numerous different categories of video gaming. Sports games, racing games, role-playing games, and other specialized titles all enjoy incredible success. As the gaming industry grows and develops more categories of specialized gaming, new business opportunities are opening up for individuals who want to engage in self-employment by gaming companies. Individuals who decide to pursue a career in gaming can be found in a variety of different fields.
Gaming is a multi-faceted industry that is currently experiencing unprecedented growth. The expansion of online and offline communities, the expansion of personal computer usage around the world, and the advancement of hand-held video game hardware have all contributed to the amazing growth of this industry. The future of gaming looks strong and promises to expand into all areas of business and commerce in years to come.