20 years of video games: What are the most popular titles in Europe?

Video games have come a long way since their beginnings in the early 70s. Once considered a hobby, video games have improved with technological advances. Today, video games can be described as an art form. Indeed, the creation of a video game requires expertise in many disciplines: computing, graphics, drawing, writing, music and many others.

No country in Europe has escaped the phenomenon, and it's interesting to know which games have been the most popular over the last two decades. Even if the way games are consumed differs from country to country, the trends are often very similar.

Image of a person playing a video game
Image taken from internet

First, we need to distinguish between the major families of video games. We start with multiplayer games and then move on to the most popular single-player games. 

Nintendo, FIFA, games for everyone

In European video game culture, we appreciate titles that promise good times with friends and family. The famous Nintendo company has released nuggets that continue to fascinate players, such as the famous Mario Kart. However, these releases are Nintendo exclusives. This means that they can only be played on Nintendo consoles. This is a strategic choice on the part of the company, which not only limits the scope of these games in terms of sales, but also helps to increase sales of its consoles.

You can find the Switch in the list of family consoles.

How can we talk about video games without mentioning FIFA ? Soccer fans have always loved EA Sport's FIFA series, which has sold tens of millions of copies worldwide. It was even the best-selling game in France in 2022. 

In Switzerland, FIFA or rather "EA Sports FC"its new name since the end of the partnership with EA and FIFA, is at the top of the sales charts every year. Its release just before Christmas certainly has something to do with it. Curiously, however, the Swiss have quite different trends from the French when it comes to video games. For example, only 55% of Swiss people over the age of 10 play video games, compared with 70% of French people. This trend can also be explained by legislation. Switzerland, unlike France, authorizes online games such as slot machines. As a result, some gambling enthusiasts naturally turn to online casinos rather than video games. For gamblers in search of adrenalin, this site is a reference for Switzerland in the field. If you're looking for news about video games in Switzerland, you can visit :

Open world, FPS, adventure, Europe's game time

Based on Google Trends data going back to 2004, we can see which games were the most popular with gamers in the 2000s. Starting with the GTA series, which applies the open-world principle to 3D. GTA III revolutionizes the gaming world offering players total freedom in the streets of a fictional New York. The game's sequels will be particularly popular in Western European countries. The release of GTA VI is scheduled for release in the final quarter of 2024. The game is eagerly awaited by gamers the world over, and once again looks set to make video game history.

In Eastern Europe (Russia, Ukraine, Hungary and all the Balkans), there's a particular love affair with online FPSs, with the indisputable Counter-Strike which has reigned supreme since the 2000s. This shooter features arena battles with other real players. Counter Strike culture continues to write its legend, especially since the game became an e-sport where the best players can now make a living from their passion.

Impossible to avoid game World Of Warcraftthe ultimate heroic simulation that enthralled gamers all over the world, including Europe, for at least five years. The game remained at the top of the sales charts, making Blizzard, the company that designed it, a European gaming heavyweight. Its acquisition by Microsoft for the record sum of $68.7 billion is testimony to this. 

2010s: the hegemony of Minecraft, eclipsed by a certain Fortnite

Some people know nothing about video games, but certain titles are so deeply rooted in popular culture that they're impossible to ignore. The launch of set Minecraft in November 2011 set much of Europe abuzz. It's a sandbox game where you can create anything from fairly rough pixels. The formula is so popular that the game is still the most played and certainly one of the most profitable on the Old Continent.

At the bottom of 2018, the only game to overshadow Minecraft is undoubtedly Fortnite and its battle royale mode. It is the first cross-platform video game. In other words, players on Playstation, PC and Xbox can play together. An original style of play and an opportunity to bring together gamers from all over the world that will take it to the top of the world's most popular rankings. It has been so successful that it has become a cultural phenomenon.

The video game phenomenon continues to surprise us. Technological advances are opening up new opportunities in this rapidly expanding market, and game creators are working hard to offer their players an even more immersive experience. Could this be the dawn of video games?

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