There are approximately 86 million gamers in these United States. Of those, 44 percent — the ones with some kind of cash flow — buy games regularly. And of that pool of about 38 million, 85 percent would confess to buying games secondhand.
These are the newest findings by video game market research firm Newzoo, as Game Politics reported last week.
In addition to that, the DLC market is expected to pull in $1.7 billion from the US and Europe combined by year’s end. So if titles like Call of Duty: Black Ops are consistently pulling off all-time sales records, what’s with these season passes and $10 online fees assessed to access multiplayer in some titles (I was a bit miffed, myself, when I picked up Uncharted 3 at RedBox Friday and couldn’t try the online because of this)? Well, developers and publishers argue that they don’t see a dime from any sales after the first and need some kind of cash flow to maintain those services.
Maybe that’s why first-party Nintendo titles like The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess and Super Mario Galaxy remained at their original $50 price points until earlier this year, despite debuting five and four years ago, respectively. Me? I’m in the “don’t really mind paying the $10 access fees for online” camp, mostly due to the fact that I’ve rarely paid more than $15 for a game where it’s an integral part of the experience. Used, of course.
And my experience with Uncharted? Well, I paid $3 for it, so I can’t really complain.