As part of Pocket Gamer Connects Digital #1, our own staff writer Matthew Forde had a "fireside chat" with N3TWORK game executive and consultant Chris Heatherly about the current state of the global games market.
Heatherly started by saying that growth at the start of 2020 was quite slow, particularly in the console space, and he predicted that "we were headed for a flat-ish year".
But obviously all predictions are now out the window, and while "you hate to crow about anything" as Heatherly put it, he feels that mobile games are essentially "recession-proof", with ad views up in particular.
One app that has seen some serious growth is Houseparty, which focuses on minigames in group video chats, and Heatherly feels that these kinds of games will continue to see success even after the pandemic has ended because people's behaviours are changing so rapidly.
"You're gonna see video games evolve from this core-gamer focused, kinda geeky activity to something that's more culturally accepted broadly," noted Heatherly.
As for which markets developers should be focusing on, Heatherly felt that the current Tier 1 markets are still good markets, but that the real question is how much disposable income people will have post-pandemic. Meanwhile, he felt that India is a rapidly growing market, and will continue to be thanks to its adoption of 5G.
"The one market that I'm not bullish on is China," he added, noting that on the geopolitical scale, releasing games in the region is only going to get harder for those who don't already have a presence.
PG Connects Digital #1 is the best of our Pocket Gamer Connects conference in an online form, with an entire week of talks, meetings, and pitch events taking place from April 6th to the 10th. You can read up on all the tracks taking place through the week here.