Whether playing via PCs or the current generation of consoles, mobile phones or the growing variety of handheld devices, Australia has become a nation of people that is captivated by gaming. Indeed, more than three-quarters of the population consider themselves as gamers, making this easily the most popular entertainment medium.
But given that we know games come in such a wide variety of styles, which are the most popular among players Down Under? That’s an intriguing question, but it’s one that we’re going to tackle right now.
Ahh, the spinning reels! If there was a prize for gaming diversity, then pokies would undoubtedly hit the jackpot. Often known as slots in other countries, pokies is the local slang for poker machines, and they’re themed around pretty much anything you can imagine. This includes everything from hit movies and TV shows to chart-topping musical acts, and much more.
Based on reviews covering the best online pokies by CasinoAus.net this year, this genre is by far the most popular casino game. That’s hardly surprising, really, given that Aussies love anything involved with gambling. What’s more, the innovation surrounding this niche has also evolved, such as cascading reels, plus mini-games and features that make pokies even more interactive.
By the very definition of this genre in gaming, we could easily incorporate numerous sub-genres, ranging from platform games to fighting games and many more. While often considered to be a genre of its own these days, shooters are also frequently thought of as action games, mostly because they feature the same core gameplay mechanics.
In recent Statista.com surveys and polls, action topped the list of preferred video game genres in Australia, based upon their charts published in September 2023. It’s actually a trend that has remained constant for an entire generation of gamers, throughout the last couple of decades, although statistically, the percentages have gradually reduced because of the much broader genre categorisation and having more niches to choose from.
Typically, the best way to describe adventure games are those based mostly around exploration, usually featuring an interactive story or narrative that guides players along. They began as text adventures in the 1970s and 1980s, before graphic adventures became popular in the 1990s and beyond.
The genre did suffer a dip in popularity for a while, particularly when first-person shooters began to boom thanks to improved graphics, but adventure has now enjoyed something of a resurgence. This is mostly thanks to indie developers and studios, including many based in Australia, accompanied by enhanced interactive capabilities of modern gaming platforms.
Sometimes known as run-and-gun in gaming culture, it’s perhaps a little surprising to see this genre slip down below the others in terms of popularity in Australia. It seems there’s always been a fascination with this violent niche, highlighted by the variety of first-person shooters (FPS) listed by kotaku.com.au this year.
But shooters are often really good fun in their own unique way, no matter if it’s gunning down aliens or zombies, perhaps dropping ourselves into the frantic midst of a historic battlefield or crazy fantasy settings. They’re also a big part of the competitive esports gaming scenes, especially surrounding titles like PlayerUnknown’s Battleground (PUBG) or Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO) and others of the same genre.
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