Only a generation ago, the Internet represented a small crowd, where only a fraction of the world’s population had access to the digital networks and links that allowed for rudimentary conversations. Today, online use has expanded to the point where hundreds of millions of persons may be working and playing through the Internet each day. Gaming in particular has thrived as a result of Internet innovations, and continues to do so with each new update to digital platforms.
In The Beginning
Three or four decades ago, nearly all online gaming had to be done strictly through text-operated protocols. Rather than have the ability to click on a door to open up a dungeon, as gamers can easily do today, users in the 1970s and 1980s had to manually enter the commands in order to move from place to place, interact with allies and enemies, and win or complete the game. Online games like Maze War upped the ante by creating rudimentary 2-D environments where the player could maneuver through tight corridors to shoot at enemies.
Networks and LAN
Not until the popularity of the Internet and the creation of dial-up connections did it become possible to play games at higher speeds and greater capacities. With a dial-up internet connection, users could open up a transmission control protocol, or TCP, which placed them in a network with other users. Video games like Doom and Civilization popularized TCP networks, even though they only allowed for one-on-one contests against friends and foes. Internet sites at the time only had the capability to add basic information to the game, but soon they would grow to record statistics and even allow direct download for gaming, moving into a purely digital era.
Perhaps the largest breakthrough in all gaming came with the ability of game developers to host many more users on a single server than ever before. With a much higher population threshold, these games became known as massively multiplayer online, or MMO. The first mass-selling MMO title, Everquest, allowed thousands of users to interact with each other and the world at the same time. It became so popular that dedicated servers (and players) remain fighting monsters and each other to this day, fifteen years after release.
Gaming And Gambling
Some people prefer to spend their free time defeating dragons; others like to try their luck against the world. Whether you prefer to see what the cards hold in a game of poker or you prefer to see where the ball falls on a roulette wheel or you prefer video slots, there’s plenty of online gaming out there for you. BWin estimates that the online gaming industry accounts for over 25 billion Euros, with a growth rate of about ten percent each year. What’s the appeal of online gaming? Convenience, for one: persons who live in an area where gaming is restricted need not travel hundreds of miles (or to another nation) in order to get their fix of cards and dice. There’s no need to get cash from the ATM and many sites offer more favorable odds than a brick-and-mortar casino.