TrendWatch April 2024

From timeless yet elegant dresses and suits to colourful cars and multifunctional mushrooms – this month’s TrendWatch will lead you through the newest interests that are on the rise.

Geometry Dash Lite

Trend graph showing the rapid growth of searches for "Geometry Dash Lite" since 2023.
Trend graph for “Geometry Dash Lite” (UK)

One thing I love about writing this trend report is finding new games to play. A lot of oldies but goodies always show up in the data. Originally released for PC in 2014, Geometry Dash is a fun indie title that combines rhythm-based action with classic platforming, and was developed by a single person.

The beauty of Geometry Dash Lite is its pick-up-and-play accessibility. Unlike story-driven games that require focused attention, Geometry Dash thrives on short bursts of action. Its fast-paced, arcade-style gameplay makes it perfect for those brief moments of downtime. What makes it addictive is that under its casual exterior is a game that can challenge the most seasoned veterans. Players must navigate a side-scrolling world filled with spikes, lava pits, and tricky portals, all set to an energetic EDM soundtrack.

The combination of rhythmic gameplay and catchy music creates a very satisfying experience. Geometry Dash taps into a universal love for rhythm games that continues to resonate with players a decade later.


Graph showing massive spike in searches for "Aniwatch" since the latter half of 2023.
Trend graph for “Aniwatch” (UK)

Aniwatch is a notorious unauthorised anime streaming giant. In January of 2024 it had a staggering 136M site visitors. What makes this story interesting is that 4 weeks ago it rebranded to HiAnime. The rebrand came under pressure from copyright holders and authorities, including being blacklisted by the US government. It seems the switch might have been spurred by India’s new site blocking order, targeting platforms with large user bases like Aniwatch’s.

HiAnime will inherit its user data but it faces challenges. This rebrand coincides with anime’s global surge, fuelled by streaming giants and box office successes like Jujutsu Kaisen 0.

What makes this brand interesting is that it will serve as a more mainstream litmus test to how countries are going to deal with massive websites like these that infringe on copyright.

Sycamore Gap

Graph showing huge increase in searches for "Sycamore Gap" since 2024.
Trend graph for “Sycamore Gap” (UK)

This is a sad one. In September 2023 the iconic Sycamore Gap tree was brutally cut down. It has stood beside Hadrian’s Wall for over 500 years. News of the vandalism sparked an outpouring of grief and outrage. The tree’s unique silhouette was immortalised in the 1991 film Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, a lone tree in a rugged valley.

The National Trust, responsible for the site alongside the Northumberland National Park Authority, have described the loss similar to that of losing a cherished family member. The incident also caused damage to a portion of Hadrian’s Wall, adding to the sense of loss felt by history buffs and nature enthusiasts.

What has kept the search queries so high is the ongoing investigation. Northumbria Police arrested two individuals, one minor and later an older relative. They’ve been charged with suspicion of criminal damage, with the hope of holding them accountable for this senseless act.

Despite arrests being made, the motive behind the vandalism remains unknown, keeping people interested in the case as the keep looking for answers.

Artists have started to create tributes to the tree as well. A poignant example is the giant, 100-foot sand etching of the fallen Sycamore Gap tree created on Bamburgh beach, Northumberland, marking a sombre six months since its demise.