Even before the advent of the Internet, gamers were sharing tips, tricks and tutorials. You might have had to wait for advice in the playground or bought a physical magazine like Nintendo Power or Electronic Gaming Monthly, but it seems like gamers have always liked to share their knowledge.
A study of 45,000 players suggested that the impact of in-game tutorials varied widely depending on the complexity of the game. In the most complex games, play time was increased by almost a third (29%) by tutorials. They were not found to increase engagement in simpler games, but official strategy guides, fan-made tutorials, tips and cheat codes remain hugely popular with gaming communities.
Some types of gaming have relatively simple rules but complex strategic possibilities. You can learn how every chess piece moves quite quickly, for example, but that doesn’t make you a grandmaster. The same goes for card games like poker, which are easy to learn but difficult to master. Whether you’re looking to bet with bonus or just playing for fun, online casino games can rely on skill and knowledge just as much as they do on luck. Other games have detailed storylines, puzzles and gameplay mechanics that take a lot of working out. You only have to look at the wealth of information currently being shared about Elden Ring to know that there’s still a huge appetite for this sort of information.
Here are a few good places to try if you ever find yourself unable to beat a boss or at a dead end in a main plot arc…
Around 30,000 hours of new content is uploaded to YouTube every hour and a lot of that has to do with gaming. You can watch Let’s Play videos and speed runs if you want to watch someone else playing through a specific game, and many individuals and channels also share more detailed walkthroughs and strategy guides. If you want specific information about a particular game, there’s a good chance that someone somewhere has uploaded a YouTube video on it.
GameFAQs has been compiling and sharing FAQs and walkthroughs since the 90s and is one of the biggest and most comprehensive game info sites on the web. Most of the walkthroughs and other resources are submitted by volunteer contributors and there are also very active forums and other content to explore.
IGN is well known as a general gaming news and reviews site. It also has a large gaming guide section. These mainly take the form of collaborative wikis that are easy to follow and to search for specifics. The site also hosts many interactive game maps.
Neoseeker is another site dedicated largely to guides, FAQs and cheats. It covers all the big releases you’d expect but also has guides for cult games and lesser-known titles. If you can’t find it elsewhere, you might find what you need here.