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Final week, we printed our newest video games market estimates for our World Video games Market Report subscribers. We forecast that 2021’s world video games market will generate revenues of $175.8 billion, a slight year-on-year decline of -1.1%. By the tip of the 12 months, there might be 2.9 billion gamers worldwide.


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This marks the primary time in historical past that we forecast the video games market to say no. On this article, we’ll discover the explanations and why this decline is not any trigger for concern for the video games market’s long-term prospects.

When contextualizing the video games market in 2021, you will need to point out that 2020 was a singular development 12 months. COVID-19-related lockdown measures spurred huge curiosity in gaming throughout all areas and platforms.

The This fall launch of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Sequence X|S sealed a 12 months of record-breaking development. We now estimate that the video games market generated $177.8 billion in 2020, up +23.1% 12 months on 12 months, the very best development for the Market since started monitoring revenues in 2012.

COVID-19’s Impact on Society and Work Disrupts the AAA Gaming Market in 2021

Whereas the influence of the COVID-19 outbreak on engagement and spending in 2020 was optimistic, there may be additionally a draw back to the pandemic’s influence on the video games market.

The lockdowns within the first half of 2020 affected almost everybody’s means of working, and gaming studios had been no exception. Moreover, the pandemic is constant to disrupt world provide chains.

We now forecast the PC video games market to say no -2.8% 12 months on 12 months to $35.9 billion in 2021. Of that, $33.3 billion might be spent on downloaded/boxed video games, and $2.6 billion might be spent on browser video games. For console, we now forecast the market to say no -8.9% to $49.2 billion, because the after-effects of COVID-19 will form the console market this 12 months.


Delays in sport releases are affecting improvement and publishing throughout the market. Nonetheless, the heavier influence is on video games with excessive manufacturing values and huge groups working collectively, sometimes the AAA marketplace for console and—to a lesser extent—PC gaming.

The lineup of video games for next-generation consoles has been impacted by the pandemic and can proceed to be disrupted for the remainder of the 12 months, with many releases already pushed to the second half of this 12 months and even 2022.

The unfavourable influence additionally impacts {hardware}, as world shortages of chips imply a provide scarcity for a lot of client electronics, together with next-generation consoles and elements required for high-end PC gaming.

Just like the delays in sport releases, we anticipate the scarcity of {hardware} and elements to negatively have an effect on client spending on video games on PC and console. We now have a clearer thought of what the world will appear like as soon as the pandemic is below management, and now we have adjusted our video games market forecast accordingly.

Whereas we anticipate a whole lot of the elevated engagement will stick, there might be a short-term return to the degrees of engagement and spending of pre-2020 as individuals take pleasure in elevated freedom and spend their disposable revenue on non-gaming social actions.

Apple’s IDFA Removing Looms Over the Barely Rising Cell Video games Market

We now forecast cell gaming to generate $90.7 billion in 2021, rising +4.4% 12 months on 12 months. That is greater than half of the worldwide video games market, because the phase is much less affected by the results of COVID-19 than PC and console gaming.

The comparatively decrease complexity of improvement signifies that the phase isn’t as impacted by sport delays ensuing from altering working situations. Nevertheless, Apple’s removing of the IDFA (Identifier for Advertisers) is looming over the market, which can disrupt what number of cell sport corporations measure the success of their advertising campaigns.

The brunt of the influence of this modification will fall on the a part of the cell video games market monetized via commercial and video games which are closely reliant on exact person focusing on.

We additionally anticipate an influence on person acquisition and advertising efficiency measurements that profitable cell publishers depend on to excellent their technique, however this might be overshadowed on a world scale by different underlying development drivers.

For instance, a major a part of cell video games’ income development comes from China, the place Tencent and NetEase’s ecosystems are sturdy with out IDFA. This reliance on first-party participant information is only one means cell builders and publishers can work across the removing of IDFA

We’re assured that cell builders can alter to the brand new regulation and resume a path to development pretty shortly, which is why we retain a optimistic outlook for cell gaming in 2021 and the years past.

What Is the Outlook of the World Video games Market?

The video games market will proceed to develop within the following years, exceeding $200 billion on the finish of 2023. By then, we forecast the video games market to develop with a +7.2% CAGR between 2019 and 2023 to $204.6 billion.

As an example that 2021 is a mere speedbump within the continued development of the video games market, we revisited the video games market income forecast we printed in April 2020, when the impact of COVID-19 on the video games market was simply turning into clear.

Whereas our outlook then was regular development towards 2023, the influence of COVID-19 on the video games market meant that a whole lot of that development was frontloaded in 2020. This 12 months might be a corrective 12 months; even with a slight decline, our forecast for 2021 continues to be above what it was 12 months in the past.

Wanting forward, we forecast the video games market in 2023 to generate $204.6 billion, virtually $4 billion above our forecast 12 months in the past:


Cell gaming would be the fastest-growing phase over the approaching years; nonetheless, console gaming will carry that title for 2022, when the discharge schedule might be overloaded resulting from delays and extra individuals should purchase the brand new consoles. Fortunately, there’s a solution to keep on high of the state of affairs.