The Interactive Software Federation of Europe report reveals what gamers in key European markets liked playing in 2018
The EU games market is worth €21 billion, according to new data from the Interactive Software Federation of Europe (ISFE).
ISFE chairman Olaf Coenen said: “With a historic turnover of €21 billion in 2018, the video games sector is making a major contribution to Europe’s digital future.”
He added: “The industry’s track record for pushing boundaries continues to redefine entertainment, generate new business models and deliver technology with cross-over potential.”
According to the ISFE report, over half of the EU population aged 6–64 play video games, with 77% playing at least one hour per week. That’s a phenomenal number of weekly gamers, with many of these users of course playing for more than one hour at a time. The most extreme of these players get a lot of media attention, with addictive gaming behaviours creating the precedent for the World Health Organization to classify gaming disorder in the 11th Revision of the International Classification of Diseases.
The average age of a gamer in the EU is 31 years old, with 25–34 the strongest growing age group following 8% growth in 2018.
In terms of the widely documented gender divide in gaming, the ISFE report found that 46% of EU gamers are women, with 63% playing on smartphones and tablets, 54% playing on computers and 44% playing consoles. Women represent more than half (52%) of all mobile and tablet gamers.
Among EU gamers, 50% like to play on consoles, 17% play on handhelds, 56% enjoy playing on computers, 48% play on smartphones, 27% use tablets, and 17% play on all these devices.
There has been a 15% year on year increase in key European markets in France, Germany, Spain and the UK. In these markets, revenue is split by device. 47% of the £12.3bn market size of these nations is driven by console revenues, with mobile/tablet revenues accounting for 34%. PC representing 18% and handheld devices making up 2% of the market.
40% of these countries’ €12.3bn market comes from online revenue, generated from full game downloads (42%), in-game extras (34%), socia games (24%). 34% comes from app revenue, either paid apps (3%) or in-app purchases (97%). The remaining 26% is physical revenue, from people buying copies of games.
Next level titles
Last year esports saw particular growth, with a 32% year on year growth from $655 million in 2017 to $865 million in 2018. The global audience reached in 2018 increased by 17.8% year on year to 395million. This audience is made up of 173 million esports enthusiasts (44%) and 222 million occasional viewers (56%).
Overall, the best-selling games of 2018 were FIFA 19, Red Dead Redemption 2, Call of Duty: Black Ops 4, Grand Theft Auto V, FIFA 18, Farcry 5, Spider-Man, Assassin’s Creed Odyssey, God of War and Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege.
One of these games will no doubt see further sales after American teenager Kyle Giersdorf won $3 million after taking the top prize for a Fortnite tournament.
Play it safe
Whilst there are some 16 year olds like Kyle making a living out of playing video games, many parents are cautious about the influence games can have on their child’s development. Some parents choose to play video games with their kids, either because they enjoy the activity themselves, or as part of an effort to reduce some of the harms of online gaming.
More than 35 European countries use PGEI age rating for their games. Out of +2,000 games rated in 2018, only 10% were classified as 18s, 17% were deemed 16s, 27% were 12s, 22% were 7s, and 24% were classified as universally appropriate 3s.
The ISFE report showed that 28% of parents play video games with their children in cooperation on the same screen, with 26% playing competitively on the same screen. 18% of parents play together in cooperation on different screens/online, whilst 17% play competitively on different screens online.
The most popular games that parents play with their children include FIFA, Minecraft, Fortnite, PUBG, and Overwatch.
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