Science/Tech

Services Start Buckling As The Coronavirus Forces More People To Stay Indoors And Play Video Games

As a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic, an increasing number of Americans across the country are staying at home in self-quarantine and self-isolation for the time being. But with everyone else staying inside, how are these people actually passing the time?

Unsurprisingly, a recent statistical report provided by Verizon revealed that Americans have turned to video games more than ever in an effort to pass the time. Because of this, gaming servers reportedly received an increase of about 75 percent, which is now resulting in an obvious strain on the various networks and services that are being used.

For example, the world’s most popular PC gaming platform is Steam, which reports reveal recently broke a new record since more than 20 million people logged on it all at the same time. A similar increase happened in other gaming platforms, although not all were as stable as Steam. For example, Xbox Live (by Microsoft) recently went down over the weekend, while Nintendo experienced a nine-hour outage.

On that account, tools and services that are adjacent to gaming also received a similar type of increase. For example, live streaming platform Twitch had a 10 percent viewership jump, while communication app Discord saw server outages that lasted days right after it decided to expand the user’s limits in screen sharing.

Of course, the games that people are playing have started adapting to the current pandemic as well. For example, game developer Rockstar recently vowed to add new bonuses to its online base, while the developers of Pokemon Go, which is a game that requires people to actually walk outside and interact, changed its elements for the time being, making it easier for people inside to play, even while solo. Then there are smaller and independent developers, a lot of which, who have decided to give out free games to players in an effort to help people stay indoors while also potentially gaining new fans in the process.

Additionally, network providers, like AT&T, have also suspended internet usage data caps for now, which lets people increase their game time without thinking about their coming bills.

Video Games Video games are improving our lives in unexpected ways. Pixabay Public Domain

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