Video games have evolved by leaps and bounds over the years; arguably, they’re now better than ever before in terms of their graphics, physics, and features. But despite that, many retro and classic games from the ’80s and ’90s are still extremely popular. This begs the question: Why?
Despite how strange it may seem that people still flock to play games with outdated graphics and basic gameplay when there are “better” options—it is a trend that cannot be denied. Honestly speaking, however, it isn’t that mystifying at all; there are actually several fairly easy-to-understand reasons behind their current popularity.
Video Game Nostalgia
One of the main reasons why retro gaming has become a popular trend is the nostalgia that it brings. Many gamers nowadays are in their 30s, meaning that the retro games of the ’80s and ’90s were the games that they played as kids.
Some gamers are big fans of the characters from retro games—such as Mario, Sonic, Link, and many others. Because of that, replaying some games may not only be about wanting to re-experience the gameplay but also reconnect with the characters.
Although the nostalgia that video games evoke is a subject that is heavily debated, one thing is clear: many gamers often feel a strong resonance with certain video games that they played when they were kids.
Simple Yet Fun
Compared to modern games, many retro and classic video games were much simpler. The gameplay was normally more limited, and the actions that players could perform were limited.
Despite being restricted in that sense, older games were still loads of fun. Because designers knew they were limited in so many ways, they would focus on other game elements to hook players—to great success.
If you want to look at an example, you could try out Bubble Shooter. The actions players can take in the game are very limited and consist of just aiming and shooting a bubble. Similarly, the gameplay is straightforward; the goal is to form sets of 3 or more bubbles of the same color and eventually clear the field.
Despite how simple it is, however, Bubble Shooter is loads of fun—and highly addictive. If you want you can visit the link to try it out.
Low Barrier of Entry
Overall, retro games are much cheaper than new releases—often by a significant amount. It isn’t uncommon to find “packs” of retro or classic video games that will let you play hundreds of them for the same price as a single new release.
Aside from the price, the system requirements to play retro games are definitely much lower, too. That should come as no surprise considering the games were designed to work on yesteryear’s technology. Practically any modern PC can run them without any difficulty.
Starting to understand why retro games are popular? To be perfectly honest, it is a combination of the reasons listed above that have contributed to their current resurgence.
All in all, if there is one fact that you should take away it is that the reasons why retro and classic video games are so popular aren’t going anywhere. If anything, it is a trend that is likely to grow in the future, and in time games from the 2000s may fall under that bracket too.
We are looking for new writers! If you are interested in joining the Word of the Nerd team, click here to fill out an application