Is the video game industry in Nigeria about to explode?

Hands of barefoot man playing computer game at home

Nigeria has one of the youngest video game markets in the world, and it has only really been gaining traction since 2015. But since the rise of internet availability across the country, coupled with the growing popularity of mobile, more people than ever are interested in playing. The country could soon represent a lucrative market for start-up companies in the gaming industry, as there will be an ever-increasing audience to target. As the gaming industry expands, the Nigerian economy will surely benefit greatly.

Gaming Industry Incredibly Young

In 2015, there were only a handful of video game developers operating in Nigeria. In a relatively short space of time, though, the industry has boomed and is on a promising upward trajectory. In 2018, gaming in the country generated more than $67 million, and this is projected to rise to an astonishing $176 million by 2023. The young industry represents a hotbed for start-up companies, and the growing market is also beginning to attract international brands who want to market their games here.

Nigeria may be behind other countries when it comes to the spread of video games, but it is getting on the right track in welcoming development in the industry. There are so many offshoots of gaming that can be pursued, with the likelihood being that the greatest focus will be on the mobile market for the time being. It would also make a lot of sense for Nigerian game companies to target the blossoming eSports sector.

Developers Could Look to Produce Mobile Friendly Games

The main reason for the recent surge in the gaming industry in Nigeria has been down to the spike in mobile sales. Around three million units were shipped in each quarter in 2020, and this number has been steadily rising as well. The curve should continue to grow as older generations of smartphone become cheaper every year.

Smartphones are seen as the easiest and cheapest way to get access to the internet in the country. Internet penetration has been low until recently, but now more than 42 per cent of the population has access to the online world. That’s a dramatic increase since 2005 when only 3.5 per cent of people in the country had the internet. Now that more people are getting online than ever, there has been a major increase in the popularity of internet-based mobile games in Nigeria.

One of the biggest markets for mobile gaming that Nigerian developers should be looking to get into is the online casino. The industry has thrived in almost every country on the planet, and it is getting larger by the year. The ever-expanding pie means that it is possible for everyone to get a piece, as players can never get enough of the diversity of games on offer. This is highlighted by the options when it comes to choosing where to play. Players need sites to tell them where the best online casinos are in 2021. These explain what kind of bonuses people can expect, and also some of the games on offer. Nigerian developers could look to create slots, which are always progressing. Naturally, you can always rely on people who will always want to play something new.

Other types of mobile game are ideal for a start-up developing studios to get into as well. Indeed, there have been some major success stories since the emergence of the smartphone industry of small developers hitting the big time. One of the standout examples is Rovio Entertainment, the brains behind the Angry Birds franchise. This company was started by a team of university students who entered into a competition. Now, it is one of the most successful mobile game companies ever. Stories like this should be able to inspire budding developers in Nigeria that it is also possible for them to follow on the same trajectory.

Gaming Could be a Major Boost to Nigerian Economy

If the gaming industry continues to grow, it could be a lucrative contributor to the economy in the country. Not only will gaming bring in revenue, but it will help other sectors of the entertainment industry. This is done through synergy between platforms, and it is a common strategy in bustling entertainment markets. Games, for example, help to promote television series and films, and vice versa.

Competitive gaming will also be a great way to push the industry as a whole forward in Nigeria. The eSports market has ballooned across the world in recent years and is expected to be worth more than $1.8 billion by 2022. If Nigeria encourages eSports events in the country it will help to spread its popularity, and will also attract gaming companies.

With more people getting access to mobile and the internet every year, there is a strong chance that the gaming industry in Nigeria will explode soon. This is a prime time for start-up developers to get in on the action in the growing market.

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