Over the years, the popularity of gaming and online virtual play has increased as technology has improved. Games such as FIFA, Call of Duty and Need for Speed have attracted various markets and ages to the gaming world.
As gaming has become more universally accepted, so have the different types of game on offer, however horse racing games remain sparse. Simply put, those games in particular are not played by the majority of avid gamers – and here is why.
Ultimately, many find these games to be tedious, boring and unentertaining. Although you are the jockey on most of these games, including G1 Jockey, you still don’t feel as though you get the true racing experience – certainly nothing compared to the live race day experience.
One way that the developers could improve these games is by incorporating many of the traditional horse racing traits and features: mainly odds and rules and regulations regarding whips and other things. On some games, there is no limit on the amount of whipping – which doesn’t follow the current and correct procedure for the sport.
To improve fully, games could include odds for major meetings and allow users to stake virtual funds on these races. For example, they could work alongside a bookmaker – perhaps Coral for instance – and offer Cheltenham odds that are relatable to the horse’s ability in both real life and on the game. If nothing else, this would encourage a more realistic approach to the video games and could tempt a few to purchase the game.
In addition, they could also consider offering a ‘viewer’ type role. At a horse racing event, jockeys don’t necessarily feature in every race and you should be able to watch or simulate races so that you don’t miss major races but don’t have to compete in every race either. Or, you should have the chance to be a stable manager as you look to train the next great legend in the sport.
For example, Coral can offer up to the minute coverage of Cheltenham odds but also focus on every single race – meaning that no event is overlooked or surpassed. For those who want a true first-hand experience of the racing on the game, they could incorporate a 50/50 feature – a little like Sky’s At the Races currently has.
For most, the idea of a horse racing game is boring. In order to encourage and appeal to more people, they should focus on creating an impressive cover that will grab attention. It is tricky but in today’s gaming world, advertising and marketing is everything. It wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see the next horse racing video game include real-life jockeys and horses as they try to appeal to the masses.
Many of these games are dull and simply have a couple of photos of horses on the front, which isn’t exactly appealing. If they included more pictures and a few of the features, they may sell more copies. One thing’s for sure: the next horse racing game might not be the most anticipated but if it includes some of these feature suggestions, gamers are in for a real treat.