The Economist takes a in-depth look at the business of video games in their series All the world’s a game and they have some neat things to say about the industry. Worth a read for sure.
So who plays? The stereotypical image of the gamer—teenaged, male and probably rather nerdy— has hardly changed in 20 years. But it is no longer accurate, if it ever was. Today the average age of players in America, the biggest market, is 37, and 42% of them are female, according to the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), an American trade group. Some 72% of households in America play games of some sort, says the ESA. Even among the over-50s the share is one in three.
The article also notes the rise of mobile gaming:
Now the ever-increasing computing power of mobile phones has put the means of playing games into the pockets of people who would never think of spending hundreds of dollars on a dedicated console or a PC. The simple games that came pre-loaded onto the mobile handsets of a decade ago have evolved into a subset of the industry in its own right, appealing to a more casual crowd who play them on trains, in airport departure lounges or while waiting for the washing to finish. Today’s smartphones pack far more computing power than the original PlayStation, and games are a big part of their appeal: the two most popular kinds of software on Apple’s App Store are games and entertainment.