Covid-19 has had a massive impact on some industries this year. As reported by MarketWatch, both the global movie industry and North American sports industry have taken hits this year as restrictions have affected people’s ability to attend events. On the other hand, sales within the games industry have risen by 20% to reach a total of nearly $180 billion, a greater total than the sports industry and movie industry combined.
Console gaming plays a massive part in the success of the gaming industry. Revenue from hardware and software sales in this section of the industry rose 20% worldwide to reach a total of $52.5 billion. The increase was mostly seen in the US, where players spent $44.5 billion alone; US gamers make up nearly 85% of the gaming market. The increase in spending was most notable in November when the PlayStation 5 and Xbox One X/S consoles were released. As such, hardware sales were 58% more than that in November 2019, while software sales rose by 32%.
It shouldn’t come as much surprise, then, to find the top 10 US videogames of 2020, as of November 28, can all be found on consoles. Those titles marked with a * do not include digital sales figures (which Nintendo doesn’t provide):
- Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
- Animal Crossing New Horizons *
- Madden NFL 21
- The Last of Us Part II
- Ghost of Tsushima
- Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla
- Final Fantasy VII Remake
- Marvel’s Avengers
- Super Mario 3D All-Stars *
As reported by GamesIndustry.biz, digital titles made up the biggest chunk of software sales, clocking up $158 billion globally. Next came money from in-game spending (microtransactions and DLC), which totaled $128.6 billion. In comparison, retail sales racked up a relatively small $14.9 billion. In total, a massive 91% of the total gaming market is through digital sales, but when mobile titles are sold exclusively through digital markets and the main PC market is also digital, this difference should be expected. The console market isn’t quite as divided; digital sales make up a smaller 72% of console software sales.
Experts expect growth in the gaming industry to continue into 2021 as more people acquire PS5 and Xbox Series X/S consoles. There’s also the continuation of lockdowns that should keep people at home, therefore they’ll be looking for their games to stave off boredom.