The online gaming community is huge, but only recently has it started to rise to prominence in the world of poker. Nonetheless, this rise has been significant, with the online poker community expanding at a rapid rate.
Well-known multiplayer games, such as World of Warcraft, are renowned for their established communities, as are social networking platforms, such as Reddit. It was therefore only a matter of time before poker sites got in on the act and began to create their own online social circles.
Indeed, online poker’s community growth has been extensive within a relatively short space of time, but why is this? What has caused the surge in online poker communities?
The last few years have seen more women playing poker than ever before and this has undoubtedly contributed to the growth in the game’s online community.
Female poker enthusiasts, such as professional player Daiva Byrne, are creating their own communities that are exclusively for women and aim to celebrate each other’s achievements.
These online groups have not only helped to encourage more women into the world of poker playing, but they have also helped to increase the overall online poker community.
The need for social interaction
Human beings are social animals and thrive on interaction with others. Studies show that people who maintain social relationships are happier and live longer, while social isolation can cause mental illness. Therefore, even if you prefer more solitary activities, such as digital gaming, you still have a basic human need for socialising in some form.
While the thrill of the game coupled with the possibility of winning cash undoubtedly motivates many people to play online poker, the feeling of being part of a community cannot be denied. A lot of poker players enjoy the camaraderie and social interaction of being part of a niche community and will actively play the game online for this reason.
Among the largest of all the online poker communities is ggpoker.co.uk, which attracts an average of 6,000 players worldwide on any given day; sometimes pulling in as much as 10,000 users during peak times.
The growth in the online poker community can certainly be attributed in part to better gaming experiences on mobile devices. Mobile technology has come far over the last few years, which in turn has encouraged more users to turn to their phones to play their favourite games.
Many of the top online poker sites now offer their own designated mobile phone apps to improve their users’ gaming experience. This means that playing poker on your phone has never been easier.
Most online poker apps give players a tailored experience specifically targeted to the individual, which has given rise to more users downloading them to their mobile devices.
There is no doubt that the rise in online poker communities has been enhanced by worldwide social and economic events over the last few years. The growth of investment in the online entertainment industry has enabled more platforms for communities to thrive; whilst restrictions as a result of the Covid 19 pandemic have brought more players indoors.
New advances in gaming technology have also had an impact on increasing the numbers of players joining online poker communities. Poker players have enjoyed classic games, such as Texas Hold’em and Omaha, on their home devices since the early 2000s, but there is now a whole world of online poker to explore. New game formats are being developed by top industry creators all the time, drawing in more people to play online who might never have considered playing it before.
There is a range of factors that have contributed to the growth of the online poker community. More women entering the game, a need for social interaction, advances in gaming and mobile technology, and worldwide issues are just some of the reasons why the community has grown so quickly in such a short space of time.
As industry designers proceed to create more poker game formats, and as mobile technology advances further, it can be assumed that the online poker community will only continue to grow.