As the video game industry continues to expand and evolve—in gaming systems, online, with mobile devices, and now even in wearable technology and virtual reality tools—the statistics are shifting with regard to who makes up the gaming audience. For instance, there have been a number of headlines in the last couple of years about increased numbers of female gamers. But perhaps more surprisingly, there is also a great deal of data to show that seniors play more video games than we might guess.
Seniors using the Internet—known to some as “silver surfers”—are growing more prevalent in general. Given this, it’s perhaps inevitable that the demographic has found more exposure to video game markets. An article at Slate examined some of the numbers, with one survey finding that 17% of the senior citizens polled claimed to play video games every single day! The same article made the interesting observation that roughly 10,000 “Baby Boomers” become senior citizens each day. Many of them, naturally, have brought their established interests in gaming along with them.
And interestingly enough, the rise in senior gamers isn’t just about interest and entertainment. Studies have also shown that online gaming—and, really, gaming in general—is actually beneficial for silver surfers. As noted on Senior Advisor, older adults can stay mentally and physically active through playing games in addition to keeping up with the latest technology. More importantly, though, they can remain part of a community, and that goes for whether they compete or simply interact with other players.
There’s been a recent surge in promoting community within online gaming worlds, which can lead to fostering friendships through similar hobbies and interests. To that point, gaming platform InterCasino has gone beyond simply offering a slew of arcade and table games for potential users.
They host a “live casino,” which allows users to chat directly with “professionally trained and friendly dealers” and create a more interactive, altogether-enjoyable experience. It’s a leap from what you may associate with sites like these—cold, anonymous hubs where you’re solely enticed to play. In this case, you’re encouraged to foster a relationship in a community and the “dealer” feels more like the host of a friendly gathering.
Best of all for silver surfer gamers, this example of a casino offering a community atmosphere appears to represent a growing direction in gaming, rather than a fleeting trend. All across the video game industry, companies and developers are working to provide more (and better) opportunities for gamers to interact and enjoy entertainment together.
It’s clear in console multiplayer gaming, mobile games with social components, and the aforementioned computer games that create and maintain entire online communities. This suggests that there will be plenty in the near future of gaming to retain the interest of silver surfers, which in turn means that these gamers will continue to enjoy the aforementioned benefits.