The COVID-19 pandemic has hit virtually every industry, from hospitality and restaurants, the high street and retail stores to manufacturing and service concerns. However, one industry has bucked the trend. The entertainment industry has had a boost, and the industry that outperformed both movies and sports was none other than the video gaming industry.
The lockdown confined people to their homes giving them plenty of time to download and play video games. Gamers bought consoles, downloaded free to play games and had fun. The other big beneficiary of the lockdown was the streaming giant Netflix. Netflix attracted more than 200 million subscribers, and the lockdown played a significant role in the growth in paid subscribers.
Coming back to video games, the gaming industry was valued in excess of $162 billion in 2020. Based on that growth rate, the industry is expected to reach $300 billion over the next five years.
Let's take a look at the success of video games in different regions of the world.
The South-East Asian region made the most mobile games downloads. The 'free to play' options gave it a massive boost. The popularity of gaming in this region is immense, which benefits the gaming industry as gamers often download multiple games. In 2021, the number of mobile games players is expected to rise to 250 million.
Middle-East & African region
The e-sports gaming market is becoming extremely popular in both the Middle-East and African region. The Middle East's gaming revenue alone is expected to reach $6 billion this year.
The European region is continuing to grow, contributing 3% to the overall revenue. 51% of European residents play games and on average are playing for 8.6 hours per week.
Video games companies in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK are continuously creating new video games. Industry giants and veterans like Ubisoft (creators of Assassins Creed), Activision (makers of Overwatch) and companies like Activision Blizzard, Tencent, and Zynga are all operating in this region.
The US Region
The US had the most successful growth in the gaming industry. North American is continuously evolving due to technological advancements like Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR).
The South American market has also shown the fastest growth thanks to online games.
The top video games performance
When it comes to the performance of specific video games during a pandemic, according to the renowned publisher Activision, Call of Duty: Warzone saw an incredible boost with 75 million active players in August 2020. Information from Statista reveals that renowned sports video game FIFA 21 had 1.5 million sales within the first month of release.
The massive 3rd person online action game Warframe also attracted vast player numbers, and it's still going strong. According to Statista, in February 2021, Warframe peaked at 61,000 concurrent players on Steam.
Video Games are serious business. It's no longer niche and is now head-to-head with other entertainment mediums such as movies and sports. During lockdown, the importance of the video game market has increased even further. Kudos to the game developers around the world who work tirelessly to provide an entertaining gaming experience to players worldwide.
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