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Attitudes Toward Gaming - US - June 2016

The video game market is benefitting from a growing audience, but this also means that consumers are placing new pressures and demands on the video game industry. While many gamers don’t have the time to play as much as they would like, they still like to be competitive and are highly engaged in the hobby. Brands face a balancing act that requires a consciousness of consumers’ other responsibilities and desire to be rewarded for overcoming difficult challenges in their games.

This report examines the following issues:

  • Most gaming platforms see growth in engagement
  • Consumers demand control over how, when they play
  • Perceptions of typical “gamers” likely hurting the industry

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

        • The issues
          • Most gaming platforms see growth in engagement
            • Figure 1: Video game platforms used, February 2015-April 2016
          • Consumers demand control over how, when they play
            • Figure 2: Desired video game features, April 2016
          • Perceptions of typical “gamers” likely hurting the industry
            • Figure 3: Perceptions of gamers, April 2016
          • The opportunities
            • Younger demographics turning to computers
              • Figure 4: Video game platforms used, by age, February 2015 – April 2016
            • Make casual play accessible, reward hardcore play
              • Figure 5: Desired video game features (earned in-game bonuses), by household income, April 2016
            • Engage the competitive gaming mom
              • Figure 6: Perceptions of gamers, April 2016, by parental status and gender, April 2016
            • What it means
            • The Market – What You Need to Know

              • Computer gaming market increasingly dependent on laptop devices
                • Tablets to drive mobile gaming market
                  • Urban environments invest in mobile networks
                  • Market Factors

                    • Sophistication of laptops will drive computer gaming
                      • Tablet ownership to be a main driver of mobile gaming
                        • Urban environments invest in mobile infrastructure; commuters get better cellular connections
                        • Key Players – What You Need to Know

                          • Audience for eSports competitive with traditional sports
                            • Video game community moderation and psychology overlap
                              • Nintendo releases first mobile game
                                • Community moderation still a challenge for eSports
                                  • Computer gaming to rise with greater accessibility, customization
                                  • What’s Working?

                                    • Professional video gaming driving engagement, sponsorships, opportunity
                                      • Riot Games continues making strides in reducing negative behavior in League of Legends
                                        • Nintendo’s Miitomo leaps into the mobile gaming market
                                        • What’s Struggling?

                                          • Negative behavior puts a dark cloud over eSports
                                            • NVIDIA’s Shield tablet experiences recall
                                              • Figure 7: Selected video game device purchase intent, June 2015
                                          • What’s Next?

                                            • The rise of computer gaming
                                              • Figure 8: Video game platforms used, by age, February 2015-April 2016
                                            • No Man’s Sky challenges the size of open exploration games
                                            • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                              • Most platforms show light growth in engagement
                                                • Innovation on the horizon across many genres
                                                  • Gaming consumers are socially driven
                                                    • Many consumers see gamers as hardcore, but very few see themselves this way
                                                    • What Devices Consumers Use to Play Video Games

                                                      • Slow growth across most platforms
                                                          • Figure 9: Video game platforms used, February 2015-April 2016
                                                        • Can digital distribution bring video game renting back?
                                                            • Figure 10: Video game platforms used, by age, February 2015-April 2016
                                                          • Hispanics increasingly drawn to computer games
                                                              • Figure 11: Video game platforms used by Hispanics, February 2015-April 2016
                                                            • Opportunity to engage non-Whites with most platforms
                                                                • Figure 12: Video game platforms used, by race, April 2016
                                                            • What Genres of Video Games Consumers are Playing

                                                              • New interfaces pave the way for innovation across genres
                                                                  • Figure 13: Video game genres played, February 2015-April 2016
                                                                • Affluent gamers playing a larger variety
                                                                    • Figure 14: Video game genres played among high income consumers (Household income $150K+) February 2015-April 2016
                                                                  • Gender divide between categories shortens among parents
                                                                      • Figure 15: Video game genres played, by gender and parental status, April 2016
                                                                  • Attitudes toward Gaming and the Video Game Industry

                                                                    • Social bonding drives gaming
                                                                        • Figure 16: Attitudes toward video games, April 2016
                                                                      • Championships important for engaging higher income households
                                                                        • Figure 17: Interest in video game championships, by household income, April 2016
                                                                      • Gamers who are interested in championships play on many platforms
                                                                        • Figure 18: Outlook for the future of video games as entertainment, by device played on, April 2016
                                                                      • Video games: The future of entertainment?
                                                                        • Figure 19: Outlook for the future of video games as entertainment, by age, April 2016
                                                                      • Young gamers see the darker side of online play
                                                                        • Figure 20: perception of online game communities, by age, April 2016
                                                                    • How Consumers Perceive Themselves in Gaming

                                                                      • “Gamers” are seen as competitive, hardcore and social
                                                                          • Figure 21: Perceptions of gamers, April 2016
                                                                        • More than one-third of young women consider themselves competitive
                                                                            • Figure 22: Perceptions of gamers, April 2016, by gender and age, April 2016
                                                                          • Opportunity: Engage moms in competitive play
                                                                              • Figure 23: Perceptions of gamers, April 2016, by parental status and gender, April 2016
                                                                            • Hispanics are social, dedicated collectors
                                                                                • Figure 24: Perceptions of gamers, April 2016, by Hispanic origin, April 2016
                                                                            • The Path to Purchase Video Games

                                                                              • Mintel Trend Why Buy: Implications for the video game industry
                                                                                  • Figure 25: Video game path to purchase, April 2016
                                                                                • Interest-based targeting a must for reaching older gamers
                                                                                  • Figure 26: Video game path to purchase, by age, April 2016
                                                                                • TV and magazines pave the path to purchase for Hispanic gamers
                                                                                  • Figure 27: Video game path to purchase, by Hispanic origin, April 2016
                                                                              • Consumers’ Desired Video Game Features and Attributes

                                                                                • Majority of gamers want to play at their own speed
                                                                                    • Figure 28: Desired video game features, April 2016
                                                                                    • Figure 29: Desired video game features (playing at own pace), by number of devices used to play games, April 2016
                                                                                  • Beauty is in the eye of the beholder: Young consumers want cosmetic customization
                                                                                      • Figure 30: Desired video game features (cosmetic customization), by gender and age, April 2016
                                                                                    • Tough-to-earn rewards a path to engaging higher income consumers
                                                                                        • Figure 31: Desired video game features (earned in-game bonuses), by household income, April 2016
                                                                                      • Looks matter: Consumers discuss video game aesthetics
                                                                                      • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                                        • Data sources
                                                                                          • Market and brand data
                                                                                            • Consumer survey data
                                                                                              • Consumer qualitative research
                                                                                                • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                                                  • Abbreviations
                                                                                                    • Terms

                                                                                                    Companies Covered

                                                                                                    To learn more about the companies covered in this report please contact us.

                                                                                                    Attitudes Toward Gaming - US - June 2016

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