The use of cutting-edge technology is transforming the gaming landscape, with a recent example from Square Enix providing an exciting way of incorporating the latest tech while giving players something unexpected for free. Could this start a new trend in the industry that benefits everyone?
The Diversification of Free Games
Before looking at this potential new approach to free games, it’s worth taking a moment to consider the other ways that technology has been used to provide us with ways of playing for free. The development of the sophisticated freemium model that offers basic versions of games with a pay-to-unlock content option has been crucial to the success of many games. Freemium games have given gamers an easy entry point while providing developers with the potential to earn big. An average freemium conversion rate of between 1% and 10% means that these games need to reach many players to generate a profit.
Free spins on casino games are another way to get players started. A look for the latest free slots with bonus and free spins reveals that sites such as Jonny Jackpot, JackpotCity, and Dream Vegas offer this approach. It allows casual players or newcomers to start playing with no risk of losing while they get to grips with the gameplay. This lets them try new slots or existing classics and get a feel for the overall market before wagering real cash.
What Is Square Enix Offering?
Earlier this year, Square Enix re-released a free version of a 1983 game called The Portopia Serial Murder Case. This is part of the investigation adventure genre created by Yuji Horii, who was also behind Dragon Quest. However, this free version included a few artificial intelligence elements, such as speech-to-text and natural language processing, making it easier to control the characters.
Other work being done on games has helped to improve areas such as the graphics and the sound. The current examples of updated and remastered games suggest that there’s still some way to go before AI gives us perfect versions that capture the mood of the original while boosting the presentation. Even so, it’s clear that progress has been made and will continue to be made.
Developers regularly release free versions of older games in the original format, with the Epic Games Store giving users a free game to download every week. At the time of writing, the options include Ghostrunner 2, League of Legends – A New Champion, and 911 Operator, with Out of Line and The Forest Quartet listed as coming soon.
While those offers of playing older games for free are highly welcome, the gaming industry is moving so fast that some titles may appear dated relatively quickly. Anyone used to playing the latest titles may have a limited interest in trying games from the distant past that lack the slick gameplay and immersive graphics of more modern games.
By adding a dash of AI, these games can potentially be improved. If the original game is strong in terms of characters and plot but lacks presentation, this could add freshness to the classics and give us something of higher quality to play for free.
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