A few days after releasing new figures for the month of June, NPD offers broader trends for the broader gaming industry. It probably won’t surprise you to hear that the industry continues to thrive in 2020, and COVID-19-based home orders have only contributed to the adoption of games here in the United States.
According to the report, three in four people in the United States play a certain amount of video games. This represents 244 million people – 32 million more than in 2018. Among those who play, 39% are light players, playing less than five hours a week. 32% are classified as moderate, from 5 to 15 hours, and 20% play more than 15 hours per week, which places them in the heavy camp. On average, the players surveyed play around 14 hours a week, compared to 12 hours in 2018.
The new coronavirus has led to adoption, as game sales have suggested for several months now. Among those surveyed, 35% said they were playing pandemic restrictions more than before. Although most simply play on non-game specific devices they already owned – mainly things like smartphones, tablets and computers.
Only 6% of respondents say they have started playing on a new platform. The relatively low figure seems to reflect some of the economic difficulties of recent months. Few bought new consoles. In the case of the Switch, Nintendo encountered serious supply issues that found the console out of stock in many online stores. Microsoft and Sony, meanwhile, are launching new systems before the end of the year, which means current systems will be obsolete in the not-too-distant future.