US consumer gaming expenditure driven by digital and physical sales

22 November 2013

Sales-tracking company the NPD Group has cited growth in physical and digital video gaming as the reasons behind significant year-on-year growth in the amount US consumers spent on games during the third quarter of 2013.

The NPD report recorded a total spend of $3.5 billion (€2.6 billion) on game-related content during the latest quarter, a 17% increase on the corresponding period last year.

The total spend included $1.3 billion on new physical software, $436 million on used and rented games, and $1.72 billion on mobile, digital and social gaming.

Digital versions of full games and downloadable content drew 35% year-on-year, while new physical and full digital games drew in $1.98 billion during the latest quarter in comparison to $1.59 billion during Q3 of 2012.

NPD reported that almost all areas of gaming content expenditure experienced an increase during the third quarter, except for social gaming, which continued to decline.

“Trends during the third quarter were the best that we have observed since the second quarter of 2011, driven by growth across both the physical and digital sides of the video game industry,” NPD analyst, Liam Callahan, said.

“The launch of Grand Theft Auto V helped propel the new physical sales by 20% and continued growth of console digital full games as well as downloadable add-on content is an indication of the renewed health of the industry.”

Callahan also predicted further growth in the fourth quarter due to the release of Microsoft’s Xbox One and Sony’s PlayStation 4 games consoles.

“We expect that the launches of Microsoft’s Xbox One and Sony’s PS4 will continue to fuel consumer excitement and spending for games heading into the holiday season,” Callahan added.