How Popular is Anime Gaming?
Although it has its origins in Japan, the form of computer or hand-created animation known as ‘anime’ has found an audience far beyond that country. Nowadays the unique artistic style of anime is known throughout much of the world.
It could be argued that it dates back to the 1930s and 1940s, when the first Japanese animation movie studios were set up. It remained obscure in much of the west though until the iconic film Akira hit cinemas in 1988.
Anime really started to take off in the US and elsewhere in the 1990s and now it has a devoted global audience. Fans everywhere hold out for the latest installments of hit anime shows like Date a Live and it has also started to influence the games industry.
The Rise of Anime
Having started out as just a form of artwork and existing primarily in the form of animated movies, anime has now expanded into other forms of entertainment. As mentioned above, there are now anime television series that are produced in Japan but that attract just as many viewers in western countries like the US as they do in their homeland.
Dakaichi, The Daily Life of the Immortal King and the aforementioned Date a Live are just some of the numerous anime shows that enjoy a genuinely global audience. Anime is also now seen in other areas of entertainment like music videos and video games, putting it firmly at the heart of popular culture in 2022.
The Best Anime Video Games
There was already an established crossover customer base for anime and gaming, so the launch of games that adapt the anime visual style and storylines to video games was bound to happen. These are some of the best anime games.
Doki Doki Literature Club
The graphics for this capture the ‘cute’ style of anime that so many love. The game storyline is certainly not cute though, taking on dark adolescent issues like insanity and depression within a horror framework.
Not for the fainthearted, it is nonetheless an inventive and gripping title.
Anime is also now a popular choice for themed casino slot games. Koi Princess is perhaps the finest example, with its Japanese pop cultural storyline featuring the wide-eyed Princess of the title and a Japanese temple and waterfall as part of the graphics.
As a video slot it also comes with anime clips featuring the beautiful Princess. It is widely available at many online casinos, with players being able to look through a list of the top online casino providers to find the right one for them.
This is one of the biggest anime games on the market. It is an RPG game that can be played for free, and the storyline sees main character the Traveler try to find a missing twin while also confronting the troubled politics between the seven countries that make up the planet Teyvat.
It is an absorbing and action-packed game that boasts brilliant graphics.
Tales of Symphonia
Another action-oriented RPG that rivals Genshin Impact for quality and popularity is Tales of Symphonia. This time the make believe land is Sylvarant and the main characters are Lloyd Irving and Colette Brunel as they try to save their own world without destroying a parallel one called Tethe’alla.
Despite the western-sounding character names, they are brought to life in distinctive anime fashion and the nods to the west show that Japanese game companies recognize the enthusiasm of their audience there.
Dragon Ball FighterZ
This is an anime entertainment crossover – a video game spin-off from the beloved television series Dragon Ball. Its outstanding visuals and exciting fighting gameplay easily put it among the finest options for gamers who love anime.
The game centers on teams that have three characters to play as, with gamers picking their preferred ones and coming up against either a human player or an AI one that also has a team of three.
Just How Popular is Anime Gaming?
The number of titles in the shops suggests that the answer is ‘very popular.’ After all, games developers would not be producing so many games if no one was buying.
The hard data partially backs that up. In its ‘The State of Anime Gaming 2022’ report, data.ai found that anime titles were making up a significant slice of the market. To be precise, out of each $5 that was spent on games in app stores during 2021, $1 went on an anime game.
This shows that a sizeable customer base for these games exists, but research into their popularity is not completely conclusive. The most popular anime game for mobiles had a worldwide user base of below three percent.
There are clear signs that awareness of anime games in the west is rising though. There has been growth of 50 percent in the number of people from outside Japan downloading anime games apps since 2018.
Data also shows that western fans of anime games tend to be very passionate about them and engage with them over long periods of time. The developers of these games will not ignore trends based on hard data and research, so more anime games hitting stores in the west seems very likely.
The growth of games that explore anime may not be happening at a rapid pace, but it is happening.