What Is Driving the Growing Demand for Retro Gaming?

Retro Gaming

There probably has never been a better time to be a video gamer than right now. The number, variety, and quality of games are at an all-time high and developers continue to push the boundaries of what is possible in terms of the size, features, and graphics of titles. 

Yet, despite new titles hitting the market every day and major studios releasing new blockbuster AAA games on a regular basis too, the demand for retro video games continues to grow. 

On the surface, this doesn’t make a great deal of sense. If new games are being released all the time and many of them are cutting-edge and exciting, why would so many gamers want to roll back the clock to play titles from years or even decades gone by?

Fun Yesterday, Still Fun Today

One of the most overlooked reasons why the demand for retro games continues is simply that they are fun. While some titles may date over time, many remain timelessly entertaining, even if they lack more modern features and photo-realistic graphics. 

Casino games like roulette are a prime example of this. Roulette was first created in the 18th century by a French inventor who was actually trying to make the perpetual motion machine. While he may have failed in his initial quest, he found another purpose for his wheel – roulette. 

The game, as it was back then, is based around the wheel and its individually numbered pockets. The exact roulette numbers differ across variants, with American games using 38 separate pockets and European ones only using 37. Players are tasked with predicting which of these slots a ball will fall into when the wheel is spun. 

On the face of it, it’s a very simple idea, but it offers an exhilarating thrill, no matter whether it’s your first time playing or 100th. It is this fact that makes it so popular today, with dozens of generations following their forebears in enjoying this retro title. 

There’s Beauty in Simplicity

Modern video games are very complicated. You don’t just buy one, load it up, and spend hours having fun working your way through levels. There’s the complicated business of season passes, microtransactions, online-only modes, and subscriptions to contend with. 

Of course, there are benefits to these modern gaming phenomena. The microtransactions and season passes fund the continued development of titles way beyond what would otherwise be possible, extending the life of the game and increasing the enjoyment you can get from it.

However, many gamers are not fans of this business model and yearn for the simplicity of the past. 

This is why the Grand Theft Auto Definitive Edition sold over 19 million copies, despite the title itself being a re-release of 20-year-old content complete with some teething problems from early versions of the re-release. 

The Definitive Edition of GTA III, Vice City, and San Andreas has not surpassed sales of Grand Theft Auto V, which continues to sell millions of copies despite being over a decade old, but it shows there is significant appetite for old games. 


As we get older, we naturally have a yearning for things from our past. This is true about music, motion pictures, and more – and video games are no exception. Therefore, as the first generations of life-long gamers, who were born in the 1980s and 1990s, grow older and more financially stable, they are using some of their relative wealth to indulge in nostalgia. 

This is why remakes, re-releases, and remasters of titles from these eras are in such high demand today. Zelda, Mario, and Final Fantasy are just three examples of this, though there are countless others.

In Conclusion

Overall, there is a growing demand for video games that have been on the market for quite some time. These titles can be several centuries old, like in the case of roulette, or just a couple of decades, like we’ve seen with the GTA Definitive Edition. 

Either way, video games of yesteryear are popular thanks to the fact they’re just as fun today as they were when they were first released; they offer a degree of simplicity that contemporary content can’t, and they serve up nuggets of nostalgia that make gamers reminisce about the fun they had playing them the first time around.