Where are the video game enthusiasts? Okay, you can put hands down… Well, thanks to you guys, Australia’s interactive entertainment industry made $1.161 billion in ‘traditional retail’ sales last year.
Now despite the fact that this is a 23% contraction compared to 2011, the Interactive Games & Entertainment Association (iGEA) say it’s not worried at all.
Why? Because gamers are now supplementing their traditional gaming diet with mobile and online content.
“As Australians consume video games across a broader range of mediums, it’s becoming harder to get a true indication of the value of the industry via a single source. While there is a decline in traditional sales, the gaming industry as a whole remains buoyant as people shift towards a ‘hybrid’ model in their consumption of interactive entertainment,” said iGEA’s CEO Ron Curry.
According to local technology analyst firm Telsyte, Australians will spend over $730 million on digital games subscriptions, virtual goods and mobile games alone in 2013. If they are correct, that is an 18% increase the estimated $620 million generated in 2012.
“The growth in digital gaming is driven by mobile app gaming on smartphones and tablets, which is offsetting the decline in physical purchases and even pushing the overall games market into growth,” said Sam Yip, Senior Research Manager for Telsyte.
Curry added, “Apart from the increasing move towards digital content, the figures released by NPD show a drop in physical sales due in part to the ageing gaming consoles, a trend we saw back in 2005 at the end of the last console cycle.”
In fact, more and more soothsayers are predicting a bright future for the industry. PriceWaterhouseCoopers’ Australian Entertainment and Media Outlook 2012 – 2016 has forecasted a compounded annual growth rate of 7.4% over the next 4 years.
So, who is reaping big from all this growth?
Well, annualised franchises like Call of Duty, Skylanders, Assassins Creed and FIFA are not playing around! Based on the top 10 computer and video games in December 2012, the value generated by those ten titles accounted for 46% of all sales, up over 12% in December 2011.
The PC market was also smiling, up 3.4% on 2011 thanks to strong performances from titles such Diablo III and Guild Wars 2. While overall hardware units declined by 26.9%, high definition consoles had a much softer fall of 10.6%.
It’s far from Game Over in the gaming market.