Gaming is the center of modern entertainment. Everyone has a favorite game, whether they prefer casino games like the classic ones, such as lightning roulette and blackjack, or highly competitive MOBAs like League of Legends and Dota 2. Or they prefer something far more imaginative, like historical visual novels about feudal Vietnam or horror-survival simulations set on alien planets.

Regardless of the game, even the average player today knows that strategy matters. To keep players interested in games, developers have to raise the stakes—and to excel, players must figure out their approach to each new challenge. Players who can’t adapt and develop strategies may find that they struggle to advance. Let’s take a closer look at the role of strategy in modern games.

Gaining the Edge

Let’s start with the gaming sphere that heavily emphasizes strategy: casino games. As mentioned above, live casinos are popular for players today. These games use a live video feed to connect remote players to real-life dealers who are working in broadcasting studios. But to excel, players must put their strategies to good use.

For example, blackjack involves hardboiled strategies based on mathematical probabilities. Once a player knows how many decks are in the game, they can do mental math to determine the likelihood of the dealer having certain cards, along with other players. It’s an imprecise art, especially for those without numbers-oriented brains, but it also means that there’s a slightly lesser house edge. In this way, strategy correlates to informed decision-making and responsible bankroll management.

Long-Term Goals

Anyone who regularly plays RTS (real-time strategy) and MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) games knows just how vital strategy is to pull out a win. RTS games usually focus on building empires or armies with the goal of overtaking other players, including hits like Age of Empires. MOBAs, on the other hand, are more focused on combat and include RPG elements, like League of Legends.

However, strategy is about building a long-term plan that will span the course of the game. In RTS games, the strategy covers developing resources and expanding the reach of an army. MOBA games are about working with teammates with specialized powers and positions. Only when the entire team is activated and on the same page can one group overcome another.

Building a Game Plan (or a Deck)

Casino games rely on short-term strategy, while RTS and MOBA games rely on a longer form. But some games require an even more extensive game plan. This is the case for CCGs and DCCGs (digital or non-digital collectible card games) like Hearthstone, along with monster-collecting games like Axie Infinity.



Both of these genres require players to incrementally build up their deck or monster paddock, which usually takes place throughout their time playing that game. In other words, their strategies constantly evolve as they acquire more powerful cards and evolve their monsters into more formidable fighters. Rather than use single-session tactics, they’re involved in a very long game.

Working with the Real World

Usually, video game strategy requires players to use some part of their real-life experiences to excel. But that’s doubly true for games that rely on real-world information, like sports management simulations like Football Manager and even general life simulations like The Sims. The more a player knows in the real world, the more likely they are to have a leg up in the game.

This is especially true for sports fantasy games and sports sims like the one mentioned above. The latter, in particular, runs purely on the results from live sports leagues. In order to stay at the top of their game, players must do some homework in the real world in order to put together a winning outlook for the (virtual) season.