A Look at the Evolution of Gaming in India

The gaming market is massively successful globally, with over 3 billion gamers. Moreover, the gaming market is expected to surpass $200 billion by the end of 2023. India is still catching up in the development of the gaming market. The Indian society has also leveraged all the technological progress, the roll-out of the 4G network, cheaper internet, and enhanced mobile devices that brought about new games in the sector.

Today every Indian gamer can enjoy playing some of the best games on their mobile and desktop device, but how has it all started? How did gaming in India progress from Ancient board games to cutting-edge video games? Our article will take you back to the beginning of gaming in India and cover the latest changes in this sector.

Ancient Games

Some of the ancient games that we still play today originated in India, like chess, for example, which is widely played across the world and is still popular with these digital versions in passes through in India back when it was called ‘Ashtapada.’ 

Ludo is another ancient game that originated in India, and it’s massively successful nowadays on mobile devices. It’s also widely played around the world as a board game. Of course, many other examples became popular in the mainstream, such as board games, and, later on, have transitioned to video or mobile games.

Video Games

Video games in India weren’t widely available. They have initially limited to video game parlors on coin-operated machines. But that changed in the late 1900s, with the rise of PlayStation and personal computers that entered most Indian households. As a result, online gaming and video games became more popular, and the market started to grow.

Even today, gamers prefer personal computers as their go-to gaming device to game consoles since the games for gaming consoles are typically costly, and they can find many more affordable online games and video game alternatives.

Over 80% of surveyed gamers are allegedly more interested in video games on their personal than mobile games. Another contributing factor to the success of video games was the rise of cybercafes in the 2000s. By 2008 there was a constant growth of cyber cafes, where many Indians used to play online games and play their favorite video games. It was a huge reason why online gaming became increasingly popular in India.

In 2006, there were over 100,000 cyber cafés, and by 2008 there were more than 180,000 cafes. But, as the internet became cheaper and the internet penetration increased, cybercafes’ popularity dwindled; however, video and online games became widely available in India.

The iGaming Sector

The rise of online gaming created the foundations for the iGaming market. Microgaming created the first casino software in 1994, and in India, there is equal interest in online betting and gambling in general. Sports like cricket, of course, are massive in India and one of the main reasons for the widespread appeal of sports betting. 

What’s more, there was a spike of sites that reviewed gambling sites like everygame247 which further proves the enhanced interest in online betting and gambling in general. 

This is why many online casinos also incorporate sports betting on the platforms. The accessibility of smartphones has even further increased opportunities for online betting because their number has increased to 800 million smartphones in India since 2008. 

Mobile Gaming

This leads us to the next point: the rise of mobile gaming. We are all aware that the iPhone made a huge shift in the gaming market since it democratized the space for developers that wanted to get involved in the gaming market.

No longer only renowned and big publishers were responsible for popular video or online games. Now there are even more opportunities for independent developers to contribute to the gaming scene by creating user-friendly mobile games. As a result, mobile gaming represents one of the fastest-going markets in India, and it’s definitely the most accessible one.

 Today, India represents the largest market on a global scale based on its app downloads. There are many contributing factors to the success of mobile gaming in India and even on a global scale first, it’s very convenient to play any game on your smartphone. On that note, smartphones have become portable computers with enhanced capabilities, and the best part is that they are internet-enabled devices.

Actually, in India, there have already been efforts to introduce the 5G network, which provides increased Internet speeds and resolves latency issues, and we expect this new development to expand the mobile gaming market in India further.

Also, most households might need access to a personal computer, but everyone has a smartphone. So definitely, there is a huge audience in India regarding mobile gaming.

As we said, an increasing number of game developers are interested in mobile games, resulting in a vast library of mobile games from all kinds of genres and subgenres, even new categories with exciting features. 

It’s not necessarily a market for serious gamers because the games are typically user-friendly and easy to play. Still, there is a great number of mobile versions of video games. In many ways, mobile gaming represents one of the dominant profitable sectors in the Indian gaming market.


In conclusion, the gaming market in India will continue to grow. It incorporates different technological innovations that make video and mobile games accessible to global audiences.

Moreover, we can see how different cultural and technological trends impact the development of the gaming sector, from the rise of online gaming with the spike of cyber cafes right to exciting mobile games due to the adoption of modern mobile devices. Consequently, today over 300 million Indians enjoy playing any game of their choice online, on their game consoles, or their Apple mobile device.

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