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MADFINGER Games at MWC19 Barcelona

A Glimpse into the Future of Mobile Gaming

This week MADFINGER Games has been in Barcelona, salivating over the possibilities that 5G will unleash for the studio…

We’ve come a very long way in mobile gaming since people were fumbling around with Snake on their Nokia 3310s, and visitors at this year’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona will get a glimpse of the next evolutionary leap. Connectivity is one of the event’s major themes, with several major brands getting ready to unveil their much-anticipated 5G ready products.

There are four days of focused sessions on the life-changing potential of 5G, from “Embracing the 5G era” to “Smart Cities”. It’s going to be a huge deal, and big industry players like Ericsson have invested heavily in the tech. They’ve been working on 5G for the past seven years, with around 700 researchers involved.

According to Dr Magnus Frodigh, Ericsson’s Head of Research, MWC19 will provide a stage for their “5G wonders”. But what is Dr Frodigh looking forward to most about this miraculous new connectivity? “…perhaps some multiplayer gaming.

That’s where MADFINGER Games will come in…Dr Frodigh looks like a Shadowgun Legends kind of guy to me!

5G will open up the possibilities for mobile gaming exponentially, which is why we’re now seeing a trend of phone companies launching handsets that are specifically designed with gamers in mind. We’ve already got to play Legends on the ASUS ROG and Razer phone, and we can’t wait to see the latest offerings from Huawei, Xiaomi, and Samsung at MWC19.

These latest phones come with stuff like foldable displays, front-facing stereo speakers with plenty of oomph, powerful processors and plenty of RAM. There’s vapour-chamber cooling, air triggers and a range of peripherals tailored to the serious gamer. In other words, the line between PC and Console gaming and mobile gaming is becoming more and more blurred. This is reflected by the hit battle royale titles like PUBG and Fortnite getting ported to mobile so they can grab a slice of the increasingly tasty mobile gaming pie.

And it’s a very large and tasty pie. Where I come from it’s vulgar to talk about money, but these numbers speak for themselves. Last year gaming was worth $134.9 billion, compared to movies ($41.6 billion) and music ($17.3 billion). $63.2 billion was spent on gaming on smartphone and tablets, compared to $33.4 billion on PC and $38.3 on console. This gave mobile gaming almost half the total market revenue. It doesn’t take a genius to work out that 5G could unlock this potential even more and draw even more players to the platform.

MADFINGER Games are well positioned to take advantage of this new era. 5G will provide far greater download speeds (hundreds of times faster than 4G), allowing players to access content almost instantaneously. Much lower latency will also mean no more lag on high-end, graphically intense games like ours. We’ve always been ahead of the curve on what’s achievable technically on mobile, and over the next few years the hardware in everyone’s hand will match up to it.

That might sound big-headed, but exciting times are ahead for the studio and our players. The new tech will give us the freedom to push boundaries even further, as well as enabling our move into esports with Shadowgun War Games, and becoming an industry leader with our new benchmarking for high-end devices. We’ve built a strong and loyal fanbase over the past eight years, and they’ll be gobsmacked by what the future holds for them. Strap in, everybody…