Gaming Trends in Ireland July 2010
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Gaming Trends in Ireland July 2010

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A report by Amárach Research looking at the current state of the gaming market in Ireland from a user perspective.

A report by Amárach Research looking at the current state of the gaming market in Ireland from a user perspective.

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  • 1. 1 Gaming Trends in Ireland Amárach Research July 2010 © Amárach Research
  • 2. 2 Table of Contents A. Background & Objectives B. Research Methodology C. Profile of Sample MAIN FINDINGS SECTION 1: How video games are played SECTION 2: Shopping behaviour SECTION 3: Factors affecting choice of video game INSIGHTS AND IMPLICATIONS Cover Image credit: http://www.stylosnet.com/home/
  • 3. 3 A. Background & Objectives Videogames are no longer the niche product they once were. They are big business and the market continues to grow, bucking the trend experienced by similar entertainment industries such as music and film. Worldwide revenue currently stands at $60 billion, expected to grow to $70 billion by 2015. The value of the UK market alone is currently £4.4 billion. The average gamer is now 32, with 25% of all gamers being over 50. Children who grew up with video games 20 years ago now have children themselves. The industry is at a tipping point: video games have become mainstream. Video game developers and publishers have never experienced this popularity problem before. They knew their market intimately and catered to very specific tastes. As the market opens up, developers and publishers are scrambling to make games that appeal to a much wider variety of consumers, consumers they have never sold to before. The objective of this research is to better understand the Irish video game player and how they consume video games.
  • 4. 4 B. Research Methodology Quantitative Methodology 606 Online Interviews 16+ year olds nationally representative sample Data collection conducted in May 2010.
  • 5. 5 C. Profile of Sample (Base: All 16+ who play video games - 606) Gender Age Class Region % % % % 16-24 21 (17%) 27 Dublin Male (28%) 49 ABC1/ 47 (50%) 25-34 F50+ (22%) 26 (48%) 35-44 (19%) 21 Outside 73 Dublin Female C2DE/ 45-54 53 (72%) (50%) 51 14 F50- (16%) (52%) 55+ 18 (26%) The sample is slightly more biased towards the younger age groups. ( ) = National Population Census 2006 Analysis of Sample
  • 6. Section 1: How Video Games are Played
  • 7. 7 Devices Used to Play Video Games (Base: All 16+ who play video games - 606) % Device Used Top 3 Most Often Devices Higher Amongst PC/Laptop 40 67 Mobile Phone 9 35 16-34 Nintendo Wii 15 34 Female, 35-44 Nintendo DS 12 33 Female, 16-44 Playstation 2 3 19 16-24 Playstation 3 10 17 Male, 16-24 Xbox 360 9 17 Male, 16-24 PSP 1 9 35-44 PCs and Laptops are the most popular device used to play games, perhaps to due to popularity of online games and games on social networking sites. Nintendo’s consoles are also quite popular and have a broader appeal than both the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360. Q.1a/1b
  • 8. 8 Amount of Time Spent Playing Video Games Every Week (Base: All 16+ who play video games - 606) % of People 100 90 80 70 60 61 55 50 50 40 30 20 19 12 11 10 10 8 6 7 6 5 4 4 3 2 0 0-2hrs 2-4hrs 4-6hrs 6-8hrs 8-10hrs 10+hrs Total Sample Female Male The majority of people are casual games players, playing less than two hours a week. However, 15% of those who play games play more than 6 hours a week. Q.2
  • 9. Section 2: Shopping Behaviour
  • 10. 10 Claimed Spend on Video Games Each Year (Base: All 16+ who play video games - 606) Total Sample Higher amongst Male Female % % % €500+ 1 1 1 1 1 €401 - 500 3 9% ↑ 35-44 5 12% 2 6% €301 - 400 4 2 €201 - 300 6 17 €101 - 200 18 ↑ 16-24 18 Less than €100 73 78 ↑ 45+ 69 Average €94.25 €105.30 €83.54 The majority of people claim to spend less than €100 a year on video games, with males spending roughly €20 more than females. The average spend is €94.25, which is roughly the price of two new video games. Q.3
  • 11. 11 Preferred outlet for purchasing videogames (Base: All 16+ who play video games - 606) High Street Retailer (e.g. HMV, Golden Disks) ↑ Rest of Leinster Supermarket ↑ Female 19% Connaught/Ulster 8% Specialist Video 17% Online Retailer Game Store 42% ↑ Male, 45+ ↑ 16-24, Dublin 7% 7% Digital Download Service Other ↑ Male, Munster Specialist videogame stores are by far the most popular outlet, particularly among younger people located in Dublin. Other stores constitute roughly one quarter of video game purchases while a further quarter are purchased online. Q.4
  • 12. 12 Video Game Purchase – New vs. Used (Base: All 16+ who play video games - 606) % of % of New Higher Amongst Old Higher Amongst Purchases Purchases % % 91 - 100 9 ↑ Munster ↑ 45+, Dublin 51 - 90 16 ↑35-44 91 - 100 38 1 - 50 37 ↑ Female 51 - 90 22 ↑ 16-24 1 - 50 32 ↑ C2DE 0 38 ↑ 55+ 0 8 ↑ 55+ Average 66% Average 34% Two thirds of videogames are purchased new. Those over 45 and in Dublin buy a larger proportion on new video games while those 35-44 and living in Munster buy a larger proportion of used video games. Q.5
  • 13. Section 3: Factors affecting choice of video game
  • 14. 14 Type of Video Game Played Regularly – Top 3 (Base: All 16+ who play video games - 606) % 1st 2nd 3rd Choice Choice Choice Volumetric Higher Amongst Quiz/Puzzle 28 19 13 61 Quiz/Puzzle Games Games 24 Female, 55+ Action /Adventure 8 15 13 36 Games on Social Female networking sites 11 Games on Social 11 11 11 33 networking sites Action /Adventure 11 Racing 10 7 10 27 Football 9 Male, 16-24 Racing Football 10 9 6 25 9 Male, 25-34 First Person Other Sports 6 8 11 25 Shooter (FPS) 8 Male, 16-24 Military/strategy 6 9 10 25 Role Playing (RPG) 8 Role Playing (RPG) 7 7 10 24 Military/strategy 7 Male First Person Other Sports 7 Shooter (FPS) 9 8 5 22 Other Other 6 5 5 11 21 There is a distinct divide between the games played by males and females. Females are predominantly playing quiz/puzzle games and games on social networking, while males have a far broader taste. Q.6
  • 15. 15 Factors Affecting Choice of Video Game (Base: All 16+ who play video games - 606) % 1st 2nd 3rd Choice Choice Choice Volumetric Higher Amongst Enjoy the genre 31 21 14 66 Enjoy the genre 26 Price (Special 22 20 15 57 Price (Special offer/free) offer/free) 20 Female, 55+ Recommendation 10 24 23 57 Recommendation from a friend from a friend 16 55+ Well known 15 8 12 35 Well known franchise 13 16-24 franchise Ability to play with 13 10 11 34 Ability to play with friends 12 Dublin friends Reviews from the 6 9 8 23 Reviews from the gaming press 7 gaming press Good advertising 25 8 15 Good advertising 4 for the game for the game Recommendation 1 7 10 2 Recommendation 2 Munster from staff in shop from staff in shop 14 4 1 Other Other Genre is the most important factor when people are choosing a video game to play: if they are familiar with and enjoy the premise of a game, they are far more willing to try it. People also place weight in their friends’ recommendations, much more so the recommendations of the gaming press or staff in a games store. Q.7
  • 16. Insights and Implications
  • 17. 17 How video games are played PCs and laptops are by far the most preferred method of playing video games, with two thirds of people mentioning it as one of their three preferred methods. This is likely due to the high prevalence of playing games online or on social networking sites. By their nature, these games are free. However, there is an opportunity to tie these games to a commercial game, or indeed any product, in order to increase awareness. Nintendo’s home console, the Wii, and portable console, the DS, are also quite popular among video game players. More so than any other developer, Nintendo has captured the zeitgeist. Video games were traditionally about obtaining a high score, “beating the game”. Nintendo changed this almost singlehandedly: games can now be about fitness, solving puzzles, singing in key. While not popular among traditional gamers, Nintendo’s current success is due to this broad market appeal. Though the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 are not used by many video gamers players, they are most popular among traditional game players, males aged 16-24. This cohort represents the heavy user and it is for this reason alone that Sony and Microsoft are currently thriving. Nintendo has little presence here. However, there is little potential growth left among this cohort. As demand for video games increases in other cohorts, Sony and Microsoft may be forced to adapt and expand their offerings.
  • 18. 18 Shopping Behaviour The average claimed spend on video games was €94.25 a year, though this was much higher among the heavy users. 12% of males claim to spend over €200, compared to only 6% of female users. However, as females are more likely to play games online, there may be potential to earn revenue through online transactions. For example, Farmville, the most popular game on Facebook, earns its parent company Zynga $50 million a year. This is from simple $1 sales of new items. 42% of people buy their video games in specialist retail stores, however almost a quarter of people buy their games online. As internet use continues to rise, specialist stores may begin to suffer. Online retailers are very competitive on price due to a lower cost base. As online infrastructure continues to improve as well, publishers and developers are increasingly cutting out the middleman, and offering their products for download. Services such as Steam are breaking into the mainstream, with new services Onlive and Gakai driving innovation. 66% of games are bought new, while the remaining 34% are bought used. The 34% of games that are bought used represent a loss for the publishers and developers and a gain for the retail stores, who are, in essence, selling the game twice. This trend will likely decrease in future, as publishers have begun offering bonuses to consumers who purchase new games. This comes in the form on a one time use code that provides extra content, something not available if the game is bought used.
  • 19. 19 Factors affecting choice of video games Quiz and puzzle games are by far the most popular games, likely driven by the wide range of free options available online. “Enjoying the genre” is also the most important factor for players when choosing a game. Quiz and puzzle games are often people’s first stop when trying video games. The problem for developers and publishers is that it is oftentimes the last stop as well. Though video games have matured in recent times, awareness among the general public is still in its infancy. However, developers and publishers can use the broad appeal of quiz and puzzle games to tie in new elements from other genres. This can help increase awareness of the many types of video game available. There is still a large divide between the types of video games enjoyed by males and females. Females tend to prefer the more casual genres: quiz and puzzle games, games on social networking sites, etc. Males tend to prefer sports games and games with action, such as shooting and military games. It is important for developers and publishers to consider style and genre in tandem. For example, it may be possible to develop a game in the shooting (FPS) genre that has a style that appeals to women. Further, the marketing for these more action orientated games is almost universally targeted towards men, so women are excluded at a very early stage. If growth in the market is to continue, it is imperative that traditional genres expand beyond their traditional market.
  • 20. To find out more about our research and services contact: Amárach Research 11 Kingswood Business Centre Citywest Business Campus Dublin 24 T. (01) 410 5200 E: gerard.oneill@amarach.com W: www.amarach.com B: www.amarachresearch.blogspot.com
  • 21. Recovery 2.0