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Study: 60 Percent Of Western World Plays Games

A new survey conducted across the UK, US, France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Belgium shows just how pervasive video games have become throughout the world -- statistics and graphs of players' usage within.
A new survey conducted across the UK, US, France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Belgium shows just how pervasive video games have become throughout the world. Research firm TNS and game business consultants Newzoo found that in each of the countries surveyed -- and across 13,000 online respondents from all age groups -- at least 60 percent of each country's population played games in some capacity. In the US, UK, and France, video game consoles were the most popular venue for gaming, with 58 percent, 55 percent, and 45 percent of their respective online populations playing console games. In Germany, PC games were the most popular among those polled, attracting 45 percent of the population, while in the Netherlands and Belgium, online game portals were the most popular. TNS explained that overall popularity figures do not tell the whole story. "Major differences in popularity exist when looking at individual age groups, for instance the popularity of game portals ranges from 42 percent (US) to 69 percent (Netherlands) for eight to 12 year old boys while the age bracket 50-plus female shows percentages varying from 26 percent (France) to 54 percent (US)." Gaming Platform Breakdown Below is a breakdown of percentages of populations that play a given gaming platform, from TNS' and Newzoo's Today's Gamers survey: tgoverall.jpg Another graph from the report broke down that data further into age groups and gender: tgperagegroup.jpg Many of the people polled are not necessarily loyal to one particular platform or game genre. The report stated, "The majority of people playing games do so on various platforms playing different genres depending on time of day, social setting and motivation to play." The report continued, "For instance, 41 percent (EU countries) and 55 percent (US) of console players indicate they also play on game portals. Of all console 'action' gamers (shooters, fighting, racing) more than 47 percent indicate they also play online casual games. This confirms that the overlap between the classic casual online gamer and hardcore console gamer is increasing." Time Spent Doesn't Equal Money Spent Below is another graph from TNS that exhibits the percentage of the population that plays games, and how many hours per week they spend playing games, broken down by gender: tgpercentageofpop.jpg TNS noted that even though gamers may spend time playing games on a particular platform, it doesn't necessarily mean they're spending money. Across all countries surveyed, the percentage of MMO players who said they spent any money on that type of game ranged from 31 percent (Netherlands) to 84 percent (France). As for mobile games, anywhere from 12 percent (Netherlands) to 63 percent (US) payed to play games on that platform. The survey discovered that the US and the UK are finding mobile gaming more attractive with the introduction of Apple's iPhone, which has an App Store that makes it easy to buy and download games. Social networks in the US are also on the rise, as the study found that "The US leads the European countries in gaming on social networks by almost a factor two in terms of popularity."

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