Wait, what? FPS Gaming might be a confusing phrase for some, but it basically means “First Person Shooter”. Not (as I initially thought) “Frames Per Second”.
Think about the biggest games on mobile though and the likes of PUBG and Fortnite are right up there. Recent developments in gaming and mobile technology have opened the door to a new standard in mobile FPS gaming. Of course, this has already existed on some level for years, but limitations regarding connectivity, processing power, and input, have so far kept the bar lower than many would like.
Indeed, even recently – when Fortnite came to the iPhone – it was only certain iPhones which could run the game. This was a really popular game yet even some modern phones couldn’t run it. Now it can be done, and streaming solutions are coming online which will let your play games on more phones – all you’ll need is a fast internet connection.
But, and it’s something we’ve touched on fairly recently there’s still a few hurdles to overcome.
The most immediately obvious issue when it comes to playing a first-person shooter on a mobile phone is that of control. While some games, like turn-based or strategy games, are perfectly suited to touch screens, the same cannot be said for First Person Shooters..
“FIX TOUCH MAPPING” (CC BY-ND 2.0) by TheBetterDay
As you can see, the rise of gaming controllers which are geared to smartphones means that a pure touch-based input isn’t the only way forward. With so many options out there, we’ve seen a growing market for dedicated mobile controllers. This, combined with greater levels of support within the games themselves, is effectively leaving this issue behind. The biggest First Person Shooter games now have a large amount of specific controllers which will work with their offerings.
As we touched on earlier, one of the most exciting developments this year is the promise of game streaming with the likes of Google Stadia. In effect, this allows users to enjoy desktop-level games anywhere with an internet connection. All it takes is a device powerful enough to receive and send a live signal. In other words, this is a perfect fit for mobile.
While single-player games will work just as many other genres, what many players are most excited for is the potential which this holds for live mobile multiplayer gaming. MMOFPS games such as Destiny 2 are proving to be enormous hits, and with this technology, users will finally be able to play these on the go.
Supporting this form of gaming are the future advantages of speed. The upcoming 5G mobile networks will help push this type of gaming into a whole different stratosphere. While these new networks are only just rolling out (and 5G phones aren’t hugely popular right now), the potential in terms of bandwidth and latency is immense. Latency is especially important, standing as the last major step for the viability of this technology.
Mobile VR adapters like the Samsung Gear VR might not operate on the same level as dedicated devices such as the HTC Vive, but their current generation of devices still gives you incredible experiences. Combined with better input options, and the advantages of game streaming, virtual reality FPS games on mobile are primed to reach the next level.
“Samsung Gear VR” (CC BY 2.0) by pestoverde
This is a technology which will only improve and cheapen over time, which makes fans of this form of involved gaming all the more excited for what is coming.
The technology as listed in this article exists in its early forms already. Controllers can now be purchased easily through stores like Amazon, and the same can be said for VR mobile headsets. Google Stadia, for those interested, is slated for release in November 2019, at which point it should at least function well from most home networks.
We wouldn’t anticipate that streaming technology reaches true public viability until the launch of 5G, given the lag associated with many public connections points. 5G should start seeing widespread integration in major cities starting 2020, and it could require an upgrade of your current mobile device.
Whatever the case, at least we have single-player FPS games like Doom to enjoy until this system’s launch, and we’re not tired of that classic yet.
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