Canada Gaming Trends Market Report 2023
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“Gaming is a mainstream hobby in Canada, and as more consumers engage, they expect more out of the industry. As Canadian demographics shift, the majority of gamers are expecting developers…

Canada Gaming Trends Market Report 2023

£ 3,695 (Excl.Tax)

Report Summary

“Gaming is a mainstream hobby in Canada, and as more consumers engage, they expect more out of the industry. As Canadian demographics shift, the majority of gamers are expecting developers to adapt and adopt diversity, equity and inclusion so that they can see themselves reflected in the games they play. Canadians are also raising expectations on game developers to manage and moderate their communities, removing the toxic elements to create a positive gameplay environment for all.”

– Michael Lloy, Senior Tech & Media Analyst

Key issues covered in this Report:

  • How many consumers are gaming? On what devices? How frequently?
  • What kinds of diversity do consumers want to see in games? If they don’t care to see diversity, why not?
  • Where are consumers learning about new games?
  • What types of gaming products are consumers interested in? How recently have they purchased them?
  • Are gamers interested in non-gaming snack collaborations with their favourite gaming brands?

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Key issues covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • Top takeaways
            • Consumer trends
              • Gaming is a mainstream hobby
                • Figure 1: Gaming activity, 2022
              • Consumers care what their peers think
                • Figure 2: How consumers learn about games, 2022
              • Inclusivity sells
                • Figure 3: Purchased a video game because you felt represented by the characters in it in the past year, by race, 2022
              • Competitive strategies
                • Cutting-edge VR devices poised to enter the market in 2023
                  • Figure 4: PlayStation Instagram post, December 2022
                • Companies are making moves to secure exclusive titles
                  • Figure 5: Spider-Man Twitter post, December 2022
                • AI is poised to make profound shifts in the gaming industry
                  • Figure 6: NVidia Instagram Post, January 2023
                • Market Predictions
                  • While Canadians have been severely impacted by rising prices, CPI deceleration makes the future look promising
                    • Inflation poised to drain the purchasing power of Canadian households
                      • VR and the Metaverse are poised to disrupt the gaming industry
                        • Figure 7: Category outlook for gaming, 2023-28
                      • Opportunities
                        • Brands need to continue building gaming habits with younger consumers
                          • Expand competitive gaming services to younger men
                          • Market Factors

                            • Inflation deceleration continues, but prices remain high for Canadians
                              • While lower inflation looks promising for consumers, a healthy economy is still distant
                                • Figure 8: Canadian Consumer Price Index, 2020-23
                              • Household savings have risen slightly from a 5% plateau
                                • Figure 9: Canadian household savings rate, Q1 2019-Q4, 2022
                              • Canada’s aging population will likely put pressure on younger Canadians
                                • Figure 10: Canadian population age projections, yearly, 2000-40
                              • Diversity among future generations is projected to increase
                                • Figure 11: Proportion of visible minority in Canada, 1981-2040
                            • Competitive Strategies

                              • VR brands battle it out on virtual battlefields in 2023
                                • Figure 12: PlayStation Instagram post, 2022
                              • The battle of the exclusives
                                • Figure 13: Spider-Man Twitter post, 2022
                                • Figure 14: Starfield Performance Review, 2022
                              • AI is poised to make profound shifts in the gaming industry
                                  • Figure 15: NVidia Instagram Post, 2023
                                • Metaverse gaming continues to evolve
                                  • Figure 16: Xbox TikTok post, 2022
                                  • Figure 17: IGN Minecraft Instagram post, 2022
                              • Fast Facts: Gaming Trends

                                • Gaming Activity Overview

                                  • Gaming is a mainstream hobby
                                    • Figure 18: Gaming activity, 2022
                                  • Younger men game more than women, but only on non-mobile platforms
                                    • Figure 19: Gaming activity, men vs women, 2022
                                    • Figure 20: Gaming activity, by age, 2022
                                  • Quebecers aren’t playing console games
                                    • Figure 21: Gaming activity, by region, 2022
                                  • Asian Canadians are avid mobile gamers, while Black Canadians have higher console activity
                                    • Figure 22: Gaming activity, by race, 2022
                                  • Nearly half of gamers play games daily
                                    • Figure 23: Gaming frequency, 2022
                                  • The most frequent gamers are men
                                    • Figure 24: Daily gaming frequency, by age and gender, 2022
                                • Mobile Gaming Deep Dive

                                  • Mobile gaming activity has largely been driven by smartphone activity
                                    • Figure 25: Mobile gaming activity and device ownership, 2022
                                  • Younger consumers drive smartphone gaming, but tablet gaming activity is more flat
                                    • Figure 26: Mobile gaming activity, by age, 2022
                                    • Figure 27: Tablet gaming activity, by age and gender, 2022
                                  • More mobile gamers play on Android and iOS
                                    • Figure 28: Mobile gaming operating system used for gaming in the past three months, 2022
                                  • Younger consumers significantly likely to game via iOS, while Android gaming skews slightly older
                                    • Figure 29: Mobile gaming operating system use for gaming in the past three months, 2022
                                • Gaming Purchases

                                  • Free games reign supreme, but there is stable micro-transaction activity
                                    • Figure 30: Gaming purchase activities, 2022
                                  • Subscription services are more popular among parents and older millennials
                                    • Figure 31: Gaming subscription preference, by age and gender, 2022
                                  • Younger consumers are driving micro-transaction activity
                                    • Figure 32: Gaming purchase activities, by age, 2022
                                  • Older consumers are more partial to free games
                                    • Figure 33: Free games are just as entertaining as games that cost money (% any agree), by age and gender, 2022
                                  • Even games that cost money would do well to include micro-transactions
                                    • Figure 34: Gaming purchase activities, by those who downloaded free games vs those who purchased games, 2022
                                • Diversity and Inclusion in Gaming

                                  • Body positivity, racial and socio-economic diversity are desired by gamers
                                    • Figure 35: Diversity in gaming and gaming advertising, 2022
                                  • Women are significantly more interested in most forms of representation
                                    • Figure 36: Diversity in gaming and gaming advertising, men vs women, 2022
                                    • Figure 37: Arcadia Fallen – Release Date Announcement Trailer | PS5 & PS4 Games, 2023
                                  • Racial, cultural and ethnic representation is exceptionally important to Canadian minorities
                                    • Figure 38: Diversity in gaming and gaming advertising (select), by race, 2022
                                    • Figure 39: Forspoken PlayStation Instagram post, 2022
                                  • Most gamers are pro accessibility and a large minority can enjoy games without being represented
                                    • Figure 40: Progressive gaming attitudes, 2022
                                    • Figure 41: God of War TikTok, 2022
                                  • Representation increases gaming enjoyment for minority populations
                                    • Figure 42: “I enjoy games more when the characters look like me”, by race, 2022
                                  • Representation drives sales
                                    • Figure 43: Purchased a video game because you felt represented by the characters in it in the past year, by race, 2022
                                • Tackling Barriers to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

                                  • A large minority of consumers don’t have a desire to see wider representation in gaming
                                    • Consumers are worried that more attention paid to diversity means less to gameplay
                                      • Figure 44: Reasons for not wanting to see more representation, 2022
                                  • Advertising & Games

                                    • Word of mouth is the most common way gamers learn about new games
                                        • Figure 45: How consumers learn about games, 2022
                                      • Women gamers were more likely to pay closer attention to word of mouth
                                        • Figure 46: How consumers learn about games, men vs women, 2022
                                      • Around half of consumers get excited by a good review
                                        • Figure 47: Gaming media attitudes, 2022
                                        • Figure 48: IGN Jedi Survivor Instagram reel, 2023
                                      • Men aged 18-44 are nearly twice as likely as their female counterparts to follow news about gaming
                                        • Figure 49: “I enjoy following news about gaming” (% any agree), by age and gender, 2022
                                      • Gamers are most interested in gaming partnerships with traditional snack food
                                        • Figure 50: Gaming snack partnership preference (any rank), 2022
                                        • Figure 51: Monster Instagram post, 2022
                                      • Quebecois consumers were significantly less likely to buy beverages if they partnered with their favourite game
                                        • Figure 52: Beverage partnership preference (any rank), by region, 2022
                                    • eSports and Gaming Communities

                                      • Gaming hardware is the top purchase for consumers hoping to improve their gaming experience
                                        • Figure 53: Backbone Instagram post, 2023
                                        • Figure 54: Gameplay improvement purchases, 2022
                                      • Men aged 18-44 were more likely to make a purchase to improve gaming skills in the past year
                                        • Figure 55: Gameplay improvement purchases, by age and gender, 2022
                                      • A lack of moderation can potentially drive gamers away from your community
                                        • Figure 56: Community gaming attitudes (% any agree), 2022
                                        • Figure 57: Activision Blizzard Facebook post, 2022
                                      • By engaging younger women, brands can craft more community-minded gaming attitudes and habits
                                        • Figure 58: Video games are an important way to connect to other people (% any agree), by age and gender, 2022
                                        • Figure 59: Feeling like a part of a gaming community (% any agree), by age and gender, 2022
                                    • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

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

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