The connection between free online games and the economy was more apparent in 2008 when the suffering economy influenced an upsurge in free online gaming by 19 million players. This was reported by comScore in January of this year. They also said that the time passed by playing online games went up by 42%. ComScore went onto say that the actual time spent playing online games grew by 1.2% from December of 2007 to December of 2008.
According to Josh Smith at Wallet Pop casual flash games and MMORPG games like Second Life had a large increase in playing time; Second Life had an increase of 45% in September of 2008. An MMORPG is a kind of computer role-playing game in which a huge number of players participate, meshing in a virtual world.
The online free gaming sites that had the most increases in December according to the Los Angeles Times were yahoo Games 20%, EA Online 21%, Disney Games 13%, Wild Tangent 74%, and Addicting Games 17%.
So while the economy continues to have problems, online display ads have seen a large increase in exposure and this is a happier spot in the economy. Of course, the reason is that people are getting their minds off of their troubles. This is similar to what happened during the depression when going to the movies was cheap and people used movie watching as an escape route. While the display ads at online free game sites are doing well, the buying of computer games is down.
So what does this mean for gamers? You have many more compadres in the game forums, your numbers have gone up significantly, and the number of free online games could grow giving you more choices. This is possible because Edward Hunter of comScore said that the ads associated with the free online games have found the economic problems beneficial. So this economic bandwagon could keep rolling because of the financial opportunity–so much the better for those that play free online games.
One thing the free online game market has to see, as competition is the number of gamers that are way into consoles. But with the state of the economy that shouldn’t hamper the playing of free online games too much. This situation is bringing in new players as well as increasing the time that established players spend playing free online games.
Playing free online games is here to stay and many people that got started because of the hard economic times will continue to play when they get a new job or go back to their old job. The games are too much fun for people to just stop playing and there is such a variety of games to play. There are good choices for everybody. Whether they like car, sports, puzzle, multiplayer, rpg, strategy, arcade, casino, adventure, action, funny, flash games or free downloadable games – there is something for anyone that likes to play games.