Despite a slight drop in video games sales in August, the industry is growing with the successful new consoles from Sony and Microsoft and the constantly rising revenues from best-selling games and titles. The video game industry is bigger than ever and it is predicted only to grow in the coming years.
Some of the biggest deals this year included popular video game companies, including the recent Minecraft acquisition by Microsoft, which announced Monday they are buying the Swedish Mojang for $2.5 billion. Online video game streaming service Twitch was purchased last month by e-commerce giant Amazon for $1.1 billion, while the other big web player, Facebook acquired Oculus VR, the developer of an innovative virtual reality headset for $2 billion earlier this year. Apparently, there’s something going on with video games and tech giants know exactly what it is. According to estimates by Gartner Research, the global video game market generated $93 billion in revenue in 2013. And Forbes predicts that only in the US, the industry will be worth $82 by 2017.
August sales for new software and hardware in the US increased 8% over last year, says NPD Group, reaching $561.3 million. PlayStation 4 and Xbox One boosted new console sales to combined revenue of $192.2 million. Although new games dropped by 21% in August, they managed to generate $231.6 million, with best-selling titles including Electronic Arts’ “Madden NFL 15,” Activision Blizzard’s “Diablo III: Reaper of Souls,” “Minecraft,” Sony’s “The Last of Us,” and Activision’s “Call of Duty: Ghosts.” Warner Bros.’ “Lego Marvel Super Heroes” and “The Lego Movie” were also in the top 10. At the same time, 37% of the entire American population age 9 and older plays PC games.
Gaming communities around the world are becoming bigger and bigger and the typical audience is no longer limited to teenagers. Today, everyone from 8 to 80 plays video games, whether on
PC, consoles or on mobile platforms. And they spend a lot of time doing this. A recent report from Statista even suggested that video games are getting as expensive as the most lucrative segment in the entertainment industry – movies. Of course, a fresh example is “Destiny”, which was called the most expensive game in history. It cost $500 million to make, but last year’s “Grand Theft Auto V” was also a pricy title, with its $265 million to develop.
The video game industry is clearly becoming more successful and lucrative each year and there’s a good reason why tech giants such as Microsoft and Amazon are turning to it. We can only expect it will continue to grow in the future.