2017 was the biggest year for digital games and interactive media. Ever. The new cross-platform digital games landscape and the continued growth of new segments like esports, gaming video content, and virtual reality have led to a dynamic market that shows no signs of slowing. ‘SuperData 2017 year in review – digital games and interactive media’ key take aways include:
- One in three people on the planet (2.5B) play free-to-play games across PC and mobile platforms. Free-to-play games maintain their grip on the worldwide games market, generating $82bn, or 89% across mobile and PC markets.
- Consumers spent $14bn more on mobile games in 2017 than in 2016. Games such as Arena of Valor and Fantasy Westward Journey from Asian publishers like Tencent and NetEase contributed to a 31% year-over-year growth for the worldwide mobile market.
- Premium PC title PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds was 2017’s breakout success, generating $712m in revenue in just eight months. The title reinvigorated player interest in the battle royale genre, paving the way for similar games like Fortnite and Knives Out.
- Esports generated $756m in revenue (70% from sponsorship and advertising) and is on track to become a billion dollar business in 2018. Popular titles like League of Legends and Overwatch helped esports attract a sizable audience of 258m unique viewers.
- Price cuts on virtual reality (VR) headsets and must-have content drove extended reality (XR) revenue up by 37% in 2017. Steep Oculus Rift price cuts boosted sales and allowed the headset to outsell HTC’s Vive during the year. In the console space, PlayStation VR enjoyed positive momentum as gamers jumped at the chance to play major game franchises like Resident Evil and The Elder Scrolls in VR.