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Global Game Development Market Report 2021

Wondering what is going on in the game design industry in 2021 and what to expect in the nearest couple of years? Check the latest global game development market report!

Though the influence of the COVID-19 outbreak on the game design and engagement industry in 2021 was positive, there is a reverse side to the pandemic’s effect on the global games market.

At the beginning of 2021, the lockdowns influenced almost every type of business, and gaming studios were a huge part of those businesses. 

In 2021, the PC game development market decreased -3.1% year on year to 37.2 billion US dollars. Therefrom 34.4 billion US dollars were spent on downloaded games, and approximately 2.7 billion were invested on browser games. When it comes to console game development, the market decreased -9.3% to 51.4 billion US dollars because the consequences of the COVID-19 outbreak have shaped the console market in 2021.

Delays in game releases have influenced the design and introduction across the market. However, there is good news as well.

Regardless of the lineup of next-gen games (for consoles) that has suffered from the pandemic, dozens of successful releases already occurred in 2021. This symbolizes the start of an ambitious pre-covid reality in terms of game market development. So, the end of 2021 and 2022 is supposed to be a good time for small businesses and startups to develop their game solutions. In case you are one of those startuppers, find out several lifehacks on how to make a game that will come in handy.

Let’s now go deeper into figures when talking about the global game development market in 2021.

2021 is Almost Over – What to Expect Next?

This year, gaming markets are expanding at an extremely high speed. Consequently, game market researchers believe that by the end of 2021 the market will be as follows:

  • The mobile games market will increase to nearly 81 billion US dollars including more than 3.7 billion players;
  • The console games market will generate about 58 billion US dollars with the scope of approximately 770 million players;
  • The PC games market is expected to bring about 40 billion US dollars with the support of 1.6 billion players.

We see that the mobile game development market will stay prevalent and is followed by the PC and console game sectors.

According to the report published by Statista, this year, the number of gamers will gain almost half (!) of the population around the globe. The majority of people that play games live in Asia (nearly 1.7 billion). Europeans with about 391 million won the silver medal. Africa and the Middle East are in third place with approximately 378 million players. Latin America and North America constitute 268 and 212 million accordingly.

Who has spent the most money on games during the quarantine in 2021? The Asia-Pacific region invested nearly 74.1 billion US dollars of total revenue, 36 billion of which belongs to China. When sorted by country, the winner (taking into account revenue) is the US with the receipts from games gains 38 billion US dollars.

According to the report prepared by Newzoo, the global game development market will receive more than 161 billion US dollars by the end of 2021. The figure is 4 times more than the global movie distribution and 3 times more than the music content market! In 2022, the global game development market will grow up to 200 billion US dollars with an average yearly increase rate of 8% in 2020-2022.

Currently, the key trend is not about one-time purchases. While designing their solutions, game development engineers accentuate two-time or even regular purchases to get extra levels, effects, characters, and so on. In 2020, games made 35% of the entire application download with in-game purchases as of 75% of in-application purchases.

The global game development market will go on increasing, exceeding 205 billion US dollars by 2023. By that time, experts believe that the game development market will increase with a +8.3% CAGR between 2020 and 2024 to $208.6 billion. Additionally (if to think far ahead), experts forecast that the games market in 2025 will deliver 213.2 billion US dollars.

To sum up, gaming will be one of the most rapidly-growing segments over the following couple of years. However, when it comes to console gaming, it will be so only starting from 2022, when the release calendar will be congested because of delays and a greater amount of people will buy the novel consoles.

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