Although gaming has grown into a billion-dollar industry, enjoyed by people of all races, creeds and religions, there is one difference separating those living in developed countries from those which are still emerging.
That is money, because, for all its many attractions, gaming is not a cheap habit to support, especially when it comes to hardware. However, necessity being the mother of invention, gamers in developing countries have found a variety of enterprising ways of getting around their shortage of funds.
A console, controller and all the necessary equipment required to support some of the latest games can cost up to US $1,000, which is the average annual wage in some African countries.
To get around this, people adapt school and work computers into improvised gaming machines, even if they lack the necessary CPU power to run most new releases. School pupils will also sign-up for after hour classes, not because they have suddenly acquired new-found enthusiasm for their studies, but because it gives them access to computers kept in school laboratories.
At the same time, many people in developed countries are using old consoles which their peers in other parts of the world would think belong in a museum now. In fact, some of these “relics” are highly prized because of their durability, ability to work without an internet connection and the wide variety of games that they offer.
And, above all, they are cheap!
At the same time, the penetration of smart phones is developing rapidly in countries often referred to disparagingly, as being in the third world.
For example, it is currently predicted that 475 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa will be mobile internet users by 2025, and that 27% of all connections by then will be on 4G networks, with a further 3% having 5G access.
And almost everybody who has a smart phone will have at least one game loaded on it.
Of course, those who have a device connected to the internet in anyway can also access the many online casinos that now cater to the needs of millions of subscribers. casinoadviswer.co.za listed here lists all the main operators and details their current offerings and promotions.
In some countries, bootleg consoles can also be bought, although their quality is variable and there is little chance of getting any money back for those who have bought a rip-off.
Instead, some countries have gaming centres where the most popular games such as Call of Duty, FIFA, and Mortal Kombat are available to be played in exchange for a fee. They tend to be popular though, so players may have to wait their turn in line.
Games can be downloaded digitally as well, and here a universal truth must be acknowledged. Although not encouraged or endorsed, it needs to be recognised that piracy is the most common way of acquiring games in many developing countries.
Not only is this the cheapest way of obtaining the latest titles, but it can be done with relative impunity, because few of these nations have effective laws to prevent it, and, even if they do, lack the means to enforce them.
For some gamers, their attitude is why part large sums of money for something you can acquire for next to nothing?