2020 in review: The year that was

Here’s what happened in gaming in 2020

Ludo King was ranked No.1 in the top free games section in Play Store and App Store.   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

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A deadly virus threw the entire human race into their homes for most part of the year. However, it seems that gaming industry found the perfect setting to thrive in a pandemic year.

Time spent on online gaming increased during the lockdown as people turned to online gaming to connect and interact globally. According to a research by WATConsult, a digital marketing agency, 70% gamers felt their time spent in online gaming increased, and 68% believed that it was a result of having more time in hand.

Let’s take a look at some major news that came out from the world of gaming this year.

The Success of Ludo King: Several Indians turned to the online version of the popular board game, Ludo this year.

Ludo King was launched in 2016, but became a quarantine sensation in India after the government announced strict lockdown in March. The game was one of the top five most installed games in April, according to data by Sensor Tower.

Despite the fact that the game is old fashioned as compared with the games available today, Ludo King crossed 100 million downloads. It was ranked No.1 in the top free games section in Play Store and App Store.

As Ludo is a childhood game for many, familiarity and emotional connect rekindled people’s interest in the game.

Rise of Among Us: Launched in 2018, Among Us was is a multiplayer game that shined during the lockdown. The game has attracted attention of famous YouTubers like PewDiePie and Ninja.

It also took the top spot for downloads in October, according to data from Sensor Tower. India accounted for 15% of the total downloads, while U.S. contributed 11.6%. Among Us was also the most watched game on streaming platform Twitch in September.

The game was also awarded the ‘best multiplayer game’ and the ‘best mobile game of 2020’ at the Game Awards 2020.

The game allows many streamers to collaborate and stream together. Representative Alexandria Ocasio played the game on Twitch with famous streamers to encourage people to vote for the US 2020 election. She garnered 400,000 viewers, making it the one of the most viewed Twitch streams.

PUBG Ban: While several games took off in 2020, registering record active members, PUBG’s was a completely different story as the Indian government banned the popular multiplayer game in September amid border tensions between India and China.

The apps were banned under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act. The government said it decided ban these applications due to their engagement in activities, which is prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of the state and public order.

Following which, the game terminated all services and access for Indian users from October 30,2020. Chinese tech conglomerate Tencent holds 10% stake in PUBG’s parent company.

However, days after the game was banned, PUBG mobile’s parent PUBG Corporation severed tied with Tencent. Since then, PUBG has been trying to make a comeback in a new avatar, but is yet to receive the government’s green light.

Fortnite’s Epic Battle with Apple: Epic Games’ Fortnite has been in the news for clashing with Apple. Apple removed the game from its App Store in August after Epic introduced its own payment system within the app, bypassing Apple’s App Store rules.

In response, Epic sued Apple and Google. [Google also removed Fortnite from its Play Store for not following its in-app purchase rules]. Apple counter sued Fortnite, and the first trial is expected to take place in 2021.

Epic has since launched campaigns to boycott Apple products through special tournaments. There were reports of Fortnite’s comeback to Apple in the near future as part of Nvidia’s streaming game service. Nvidia and Epic said the game will return to iPhone through web browser Safari, which is not subject to Apple’s billing requirements.

The Last of Us Part II – one of best video game tales? Naughty Dog’s long-awaited follow up game took home nine trophies at the Game Awards 2020.

The game is a narrative of a zombie outbreak through the experience of a young girl, Ellie. Known as a story of grief and anger, the game features characters from several racial backgrounds and trans characters. It features strong female characteristics despite the trolls.

However, the game contains excessive violence that can hit many players hard. But it seems to have worked for some, leaving an impact considering the kind of story that was portrayed. The game was released in June this year and was one of the best-selling Sony Play Station 4 games with over four million units sold on the release weekend.

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Printable version | Feb 27, 2021 9:42:53 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/heres-what-happened-in-gaming-in-2020/article33417139.ece

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