The Video Game Landscape in 2016

The Entertainment Software Association released its annual “Essential Facts” report about the demographics of the video game industry. You can dig into the entire report if you’d like, but here are some of the most interesting findings:

48% of US households have a dedicated gaming device

That’s a pretty big “niche” market. I continue to chuckle at people who seem to think that games are some diminishing market that the world in general is so over.

The average game player age is 35

This really isn’t that surprising. Kids play a ton of games, but it’s mostly us adults who play them.

59% of game players are male, 41% female

This one shocks a lot of people, but it’s been true for years. It’s not just young men who play games.

50% of people use their game consoles to watch movies and 34% use them to watch TV shows

I returned my nice new Apple TV earlier this year because my PlayStation 4 and Chromecast did a great job of doing the same things. The apps on the PlayStation 4 for Netflix and Hulu are really great, and I use them all the time.

40% of frequent game players say they will buy VR within the next year

There is a difference between saying you’ll buy something and actually putting down the cash, but that’s a pretty significant amount of interest. I can’t wait to start hearing about the sales of these VR headsets this year. My money is still on Sony’s PlayStation VR taking the top spot.

Retail sales have dropped almost 50% in the past, but it looks like those sales have shifted to digital

Seeing stuff like this just makes me more proud of the fact I was able to raise video game sales at my Target from 2012-2015.