But an interesting fact is that in number terms the US is now playing less games.
But more and more are converting over to Mobile… And not only this but more and more people are playing mobile games at home – rather than on their consoles (a revolution me thinks…)
In an annual survey conducted in March by the NPD Group, the U.S. had 211.5 million gamers, down from about 223 million in 2011. The hardest hit category was players of family or children’s games, NPD analyst Anita Frazier said. That was followed by declines in the number of people who played “hard-core” games such as the “Call of Duty” franchise.
Meanwhile, players of mobile games such as “Angry Birds” grew 22% in 2012 from 2011, while players of digitally distributed games such as “Minecraft” jumped 16%.
Mobile gamers this year represent the largest gamer segment, outnumbering players of core games, which was the largest segment in 2011.
“Given the long life cycles of the current consoles and the increasing installed base of smartphones and tablets, it’s not surprising to see a slight decline in the core gamer segment,” Frazier said.
Still, core gamers — defined as those who favor complex genres such as first-person shooters or role-playing games — continue to outspend other types of players, Frazier said. Core gamers spent $65 a year on disc-based games on average, compared with $48 for a typical gamer. They’re also more comfortable buying digitally distributed content, including virtual goods and added game content. About 27% of game purchases made by a core player were for digital content this year, compared with 14% for the average gamer. And we would guess even lower for the mobile gamer?
However, it has to be said that the rapidly growing popularity of smartphones and tablets has begun to drastically change the video game industry. A recent survey has shown that a growing number of consumers prefer playing games at home on their mobile devices over the traditional console variety.
A survey conducted by PopCap Games shows that approximately 50 percent of UK and US mobile gamers prefer playing games at home on their mobile devices. The number of mobile gamers in the U.K. and the U.S. is projected to be 125 million.
“We already know that people play mobile games ‘on the go,’ but now we are seeing mobile gamers largely favor their mobile devices for home use,” said Dennis Ryan, VP of Worldwide Publishing at PopCap. “If you add the fact we are seeing a deluge of new gamers coming in through mobile, we believe mobile gaming is invading the last bastion of videogame consoles and personal computers: the home”