It’s needless to say that 2020 was the year of things not going as planned for many businesses around the world. Those relying on leaving home – in sectors like travel, hospitality, and entertainment – have seen their revenues melt away while those relying on people staying at home have received an unexpected boost from the current situation. The video game industry is among the big earners of 2020. While we’ve seen new releases delayed due to the pandemic, overall, the revenues of the gaming business are expected to be higher than previously thought.
Escapism, Socializing, Killing time
Restrictions and lockdowns happened all over the world, often confining people to their homes for weeks at a time. Gatherings of all shapes and sizes were restricted – they still are in many areas in the world – so people embraced alternative ways of socializing and escaping from the real world. Or simply ways of killing the extra time they had at hand.
Video games are the perfect choice for many. They check all the boxes above: online games offer players a way to meet virtually, socialize, keep themselves entertained, and kill time. Some of the most successful games of the year – like Among Us and Fall Guys – are built around these aspects – no wonder they shot to the top of the players’ preferences in 2020.
iGaming goes online
iGaming is another industry that has seen its user base – and revenues – grow this year. With the closure of gaming outlets around the world, especially in the US, people were left with alternatives like the JackpotCity online casino. Outlets like the JackpotCity were already popular as a more accessible, and far more casual alternative to brick-and-mortar establishments – social distancing, in turn, has driven even more players toward the virtual option.
A recent report published by the American Gaming Association shows that, while the earnings across the land-based gaming industry have decreased significantly in the US (especially in the first half of the year), iGaming revenues have grown to a never-before-seen level. The gross gaming revenue of the iGaming sector has grown by a staggering 230% in Q3, and across the first three quarters of 2020, it has soared by more than 200% overall.
According to video game market research expert Newzoo, the global video game market will see its revenues soar to almost $175 billion by the end of 2020, a growth of close to 20% year-on-year. North America (especially the US) and the Asia-Pacific region (especially China) will be responsible for the bulk of this growth, responsible for almost half of all the revenues generated by the gaming industry.
Mobile is expected to maintain its position as the most lucrative platform in 2020, with smartphone and tablet games generating 49% of all the industry’s revenues, up to $86 billion. Consoles are expected to grow by 21% this year thanks, in part, to the release of the two next-gen devices by the eternal rivals, Sony and Microsoft. PC games, in turn, will see a more moderate growth – but growth nonetheless, generating around $37 billion in revenues by the end of the year. As you might expect, downloadable games will be responsible for the bulk of the revenue – browser games, although decreasing in importance for years, will still be responsible for a small but significant 2% of the global gaming industry revenue.