The 2018 GDC survey shows that interest may now be waning for VR development.
The 2018 Game Developers Conference (GDC) has released the results of the sixth annual State of the Industry Survey, revealing trends in the games industry ahead of GDC 2018 this March. With responses from nearly 4,000 game developers, this year’s survey results reflect a growing level of developer interest in the Nintendo Switch, with 12% of respondents currently developing games for Nintendo’s unique hybrid console. This represents a significant jump from last year’s survey, in which only 3% of respondents said they were working on a Switch title.
Other findings include a continued investment in “Loot Boxes,” with one in 10 developers planning support for the practice, despite recent pushback from press and consumers. While interest in PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One development has gone up since last year, interest in mobile game development and VR, while still strong, has begun to slip this year.
Developers embraced VR, but interest now seems to be waning
When asked what platform their current game will be released on, 19% of survey respondents said “VR headsets.” While these numbers reflect healthy interest in immersive technologies, these same respondents expressed plans for a decreased involvement in these same technologies in the future. When asked what platform(s) they expected their next game would be released on, only 17% said VR headsets.
For the third year in a row, the survey asked respondents whether they believe VR/AR is a long-term, sustainable business, and for the first time, the 2018 survey sees a rise in the number of “No” answers. In the past two years, the responses to that question were roughly 75% “Yes” to 25% “No.” However, this year, 71% of respondents said “Yes” and 29% said “No,” they don’t see VR/AR as a sustainable business.
In its entirety, the survey reflects even more emerging trends from the game development community, including increased confidence in eSports as a long-term sustainable business, Android continuing to marginally beat iOS in mobile developer interest, social media seen as the #1 most effective way to get the word out about their games, a continued reliance on self-funding for game development, and more.
A more detailed analysis of the survey can be found at http://reg.gdconf.com/GDC-State-of-Game-Industry-2018. More information about the 2018 Game Developers Conference and registration can be found at www.gdconf.com. For the latest updates on GDC, follow the official Twitter account @Official_GDC.