The ultimate reward for experiencing adventure is in sharing it with someone else. That’s why photo-happy tourists don’t just want snapshots of an iconic landmark or a scenic view – they want it taken with them and their traveling companions posing in the forefront. These shared frozen moments in time serve to keep the memory alive and can be re-experienced many times in the future. This is also true with the virtual experiences offered by online gaming adventures.
Regardless of the fantasy, online gaming platforms provide a vehicle with which to travel through cyberspace and experience a life untethered by reality. The games range from the mundane, such as playing a virtual checkers game with a real human being, to exploring far-off planets with a group of like-minded adventurers. The shared social interaction can range from short interactions spanning a few minutes to more extended social interactions lasting hours, days or even months.
Most virtual gamers prefer simple casual games that can be enjoyed when he or she only has a few minutes to kill. These games have been around for a long time but the game developers have really raised the bar in quality and an enhanced player experience. Companies like Gamehouse offers a virtual storefront where people can visit and browse through a litany of available online gaming experiences that are free of charge. Also, the trend in gaming is not in offering static game scenarios. Game developers are using captured user data to constantly improve on the gaming experience. This is based largely on player feedback and analysis of how well players are progressing through the game.
Many of the games have accumulated large communities of players. Eve Online, one of the social gaming pioneers, enjoys over 400,000 players from around the world. It even stages its own conference every year in Iceland and fans travel from every corner of the world to share their experience equipped with smartphones with high-quality cameras.