COVID-19 impact on the gaming industry worldwide - Statistics & Facts
In spring 2020, gaming quickly emerged as one of the most popular activities during the initial outbreak of the global COVID-19 pandemic as user engagement and spending surged between February and April of that year. Especially younger generations Gen Z and Millennials spent more time on gaming as the medium was a convenient way to spend time during initial stay at home orders, lockdowns, and social distancing.
Gaming sales post-COVID-19
Looking back at gamer spending in 2020, worldwide digital gaming spending on in-game content and paid downloads has increased by 12 percent and 21 percent respectively, highlighting the growth of digital revenues. Physical sales of video games have been declining over the past few years and high street closures and the avoidance of physical retail spaces have further boosted digital and e-commerce gaming sales. Nearly all major gaming companies generated most of their recent revenues via digital content. For the most recent fiscal year, Cyberpunk 2077 developer CD Projekt posted 91 percent digital revenues and even industry mainstay Nintendo, despite having strong performing gaming hardware segment, still reported a respectable 42.8 percent digital revenue share for the year.
This development is not only due to COVID-19 – the industry has continuously making inroads to live service revenues and in-game monetization. However, during the last year, gamers have used these services at an unprecedented volume and the exceptional situation has led many holdouts to finally embrace digital purchases.
Some 2020 game releases were at the right place at the right time – Nintendo’s island simulation game Animal Crossing: New Horizons was launched in March 2020 and instantly became a smash hit. The game sold 13.4 million units in its first six weeks and currently stands at 32.6 million lifetime sales, making it one of the best-selling Nintendo Switch titles of all time. Another 2020 success story was PC multiplayer title Fall Guys: Ultimate Knockout, which generated 11 million unit sales between August and December 2020.
This text provides general information. Statista assumes no
liability for the information given being complete or correct.
Due to varying update cycles, statistics can display more up-to-date
data than referenced in the text.