Industry leaders weigh in on the present and future of online gaming in India

Published on:

Eximius Ventures, a Delhi-based micro VC with a key focus on gaming, spoke to founders, CEOs, and lead executives at established and upcoming gaming companies to identify market insights, trends, and future possibilities. From the explosion of the gaming user base since the pandemic to the potential of cryptocurrency in gaming to tips for new entrants, here’s what industry experts have to say:

Current Trends in Gaming

With aficionados and celebrities jumping the gaming bandwagon, the the sector is buzzing with engagement. Various celebrities have taken to streaming platforms to live stream their gaming experiences in real time and engage with their fanbase. Brands and advertisers have also take due cognisance of this highly consumed new-age content that is all set to occupy a bigger space in the content ecosystem than the times before.

“The intermingling of various pop culture trends is beginning to gain ground now. Cricketers, comedians, and influencers are live streaming their favorite games and engaging with gamers. Gaming was always a tool for social connection in our country and associating your favorite stars with it is an added layer of gratification. In the near future, I’m very excited about NFT based rewards which can be used across games and maybe even out of the game.” – Rikta Doshi, MD & CEO’s Office at NODWIN Gaming

Digital Adoption in Sports and Gaming event sector is increasing by the day courtesy of the lockdown measures which rendered people with no choice but to consume indoor content to keep themselves entertainment.

“Digital adoption in the sports and gaming event sector is increasing tremendously. The last 20 months of the pandemic have accelerated that. The importance of creating interactive live streams and video content is critical to boosting fan engagement. And with the recent adoption of NFTs, the opportunities to monetize content for rights-holders and streamers have increased.” – Sidhhant Agarwal, Founder at Sportvot

Qlan‘s CEO & Co-Founder Sagar Nair also mentions that Indian gaming and esports industry is on a swift upward trajectory, be it the number of gamers, brands, or companies operating currently, in tandem with a massive rise in gaming-focused startups and game publishers.

Gaming has been a viable source of revenue generation over the past year. “Gaming is the only segment of e-commerce apart from ticket booking that has been profitable. One of most notable developments from the gaming industry is dislodging the dependence on app stores for distribution and discovery,” shares Herat Maniar who has held leading positions across gaming companies.

The Future of Gaming

No longer a wayward activity and a mere pastime, gaming now holds the potential to contribute significantly to the country’s economy. Tapan Thakkar, EO & Director at Gaming Network Entertainment Pvt. Ltd shares, “Gaming isn’t just a pass time anymore. It is a whole new economy. There were 3.24 billion gamers in 2021. With mobile gaming increasing by leaps and bounds, there could be 4 billion gamers by 2025. This will bring more value and economic opportunities. Every parent should consider gaming as the career of the new age.”

Seeping into various new-age platforms, it is only a matter of time before it takes the centerstage. “As development studios grow out of their comfort zone and try to catch up with the latest trends while connecting to an ever-growing user base, it is apparent that the gaming industry is set to witness explosive growth. One current trend that can evolve into something much bigger is clearly metaverse. It is going to revolutionize not just gaming but essentially the way we live and experience everything around us.” opines Nikhil Malankar, Founder and CEO at GameEon Studios

Saurabh Gupta, Co-founder at feels that Gaming would be the next social network where communities would interact, engage, and build relationships in gamified systems. “It would be the first industry to transform massively in the scheme of things to achieve the ultimate metaverse. It would be bigger than the film, TV, and radio industries combined. Being in this industry right now would be as fruitful as getting into the internet space in the 90s,” he adds.

Advice for Newcomers

Akash Dhangar, MD at AA Gaming, Technical Producer at NODWIN, and Founder at The Esports Today deems gaming as a ‘house of million-dollar investments and promising returns’ “Gaming is booming at an uncommon rate through content marketing and broadcasting. Focusing on potential entrants, it is important to understand the algorithm connected to the gaming market and its subsidiary vacancies,” he adds.

Touching all sectors that are deemed as the future of technology; be it metaverse or blockchain, gaming sector is booming on all fronts and it is here to stay. Dayanidhi M G, Founder & CEO at nCore Games shares, “In the last couple of years, both the pandemic and blockchain have boosted gaming as a mainstream business. Aspirants should carefully steer their path by not deviating from the fundamentals of building a game while embracing breakthrough commerce mechanics like blockchain.”

Siddhartha Mukherjee, Director of Product Management at Playco shares that LiveOps is the single most powerful tool for engagement and monetization in video games today. “However, instead of running a big LiveOps team, invest in creating tools that help manage the LiveOps responsibilities of your portfolio. Empower your team and use their expertise in creating newer products and features instead,” he adds.

With the industry batting for the gaming sector that is growing at an unprecedented rate, it would be apt to say that the game is on!