$88 Billion in Revenue: Will Free Games Market Continue to Grow in 2019?
The research that has recently been published by SuperData states that 2018 was a breakthrough year for digital games and entertainment thanks to new cross-platform blockbuster games and intensive growth of virtual reality and gaming video content. The gaming market is as growing and dynamic today as it has never been before. And that’s the first reason why we need it thoroughly analyzed.
2018, The Year of a Free-to-Play Games Outburst
The diagram of revenue growth, as seen below, indicates the most rapid growth in the field of mobile games ($61.3 Billion), which is hardly a surprise compared to previous years. However, free-to-play PC games ($17 Billion) take up the second place leaving premium ($7.2 Billion) and pay-to-play PC games ($4.2 Billion) far behind. Console users never stopped playing premium games ($10.7 Billion), but there is a new rapidly growing niche of free-to-play games on the console market ($2 Billion), and the issue requires a closer look.
US and Europe Have Been Playing a Lot
Free-to-play games market is showing intense growth both on PC and console platforms. Though Asian consumers still spend more money than gamers of any other region, consumers from the USA and Europe have shown a burst of interest in this area. The PC free-to-play market will continue to grow, but the console market development is still a little bit complicated to make predictions. Reports from Sony and Nintendo indicate a high level of consumer interest based on the purchases of console+Fortnite sets, for PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch alike.
Fortnite is a number one revenue game and at the same time an incredible event that has changed the rules of the market. Unique gameplay along with smart monetization methods and availability for many platforms is what made Fortnite an absolute favorite. Judging by the top five free-to-play games of 2018, PC and console gaming is becoming a crucial source of revenue: three games (Dungeon Fighter Online, League of Legends and Crossfire) are available for PC only, which is probably the reason why they can’t compete with Fortnite. The only exception here is Honour of Kings which came to consoles two years after its initial mobile release and sold more than 1M copies for Nintendo Switch in three months.
What to Expect From Video Games Market in 2019
Free-to-play market has become a sensation of 2018 and, by all indications, will keep on growing in 2019. The outburst of new games of this type continues to 2019. Free-to-play video games like Realm Royale and Path of Exile have huge growing audiences and actively develop new battle passes and other additional contents. Even such mastodons of online gaming as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive keep up with this strong tendency: by the end of 2018, it has become a fully free-to-play game.