Mainstream PC gaming has gone casual
This person who plays Among Us on a daily basis has told me they do not consider themselves a gamer. They do not play almost anything else. At the most, they will throw in some online draw & guessing website called Gartic. That's the average person who plays games nowadays. It's not a hobby for them, but a way to spend a little time and socialize.
Teenagers who would think you're weird or even bully you a couple of decades ago are now part of the 67% of gamers 13 or older play video games to be social. We call them casuals. They are now dictating a major part of both the AAA and indie industry who are in it for profit more than gaming. It took Among Us to really get everyone's attention, after its playerbase skyrocketed out of nowhere, now consistently sitting at the top 10 most played Steam games every day.
But another major hit would show us the future. Growing on formulas previously tested by Gang Beasts and Human: Fall Flat, none other than Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockdown would display how a gigantic audience was just sitting there, waiting for more high quality products to consume. You don't even have to own a computer to get into it, since it also boomed on Twitch.
I predict Party Animals will be the next casual blockbuster, but upon looking up other future releases, there are more upcoming titles without immersive gameplay or skill challenges than ever. We are entering an era governed by online party games. Being a gamer makes me fear this, because more game studios will be inclined to follow this trend instead of tending to the enthusiast crowd. If you haven't yet, please accept actual gamers are now labeled "enthusiasts".
However, having the option of offering games as a way to kill time to just about anyone a few years younger than me... That is very appetizing. Although this counts as a loss towards the traditional industry, it feels like a long-term advantage.