Has the Pandemic Turned Everyone into Gamers?
Even before the pandemic, video games had already been growing in popularity. Nevertheless, after the onset of the pandemic, it is everywhere. The sales of games in the United States in the month of August increased by 37%, according to the research performed by NPD Group. That was the 5th straight month with a large scale jump in sales in comparison to the same periods in the year 2019.
In the month of June, the sales of video games increased by 26%. That showed that video game popularity was still increasing even with restrictions loosening during summer.
Increased Sales of Video Games
In 2020, $29,4 billion in video games have been sold till now in the United States. It shows a 23% increase than last year’s same period. This increase has mainly been due to the content, that is, the games themselves bought on discs or digitally. However, there has also been an increase in hardware sales. Players are buying consoles, and people who already have consoles are purchasing more games for playing online.
However, the increase in sales is not just in the United States. Also, people are not only buying consoles. According to Sensor Tower data, the sales of iPhone games have increased in Japan and in the European Union by 44% and 20%, respectively. People are playing more video games due to the pandemic. This keeps them from feeling bored and isolated.
All these means, video game companies are making a great deal of profit. Nintendo recorded a profit of $1.4 million in the second quarter. This is 5 times more than what it made in the same period last year. It was mainly due to the rise of the game Animal Crossing: New Horizon. This turned out to be a big hit after it had been launched in the month of March.
Other video games such as Call of Duty: Warzone, which is a first-person shooter game, is also growing rapidly in this time of the pandemic. In the month of August, the game had over 75 million players, as per Activision, its publisher. The number was 30 million in late March.
EA Games successful soccer franchise FIFA now has a player base of 7 million. This is the figure for the second quarter. The well-known basketball game NBA 2K20 experienced an 82% increase in its active player base during this time of the pandemic. Since you cannot watch basketball on the TV, playing it virtually is the next best experience.
Online casinos have also seen an increase in the number of punters signing up with the site. People sign up to play the Eye of Horus slot and other games. As they are unable to travel to a casino destination, they are signing up with different sites to have some fun. This has augmented online casino profits to a great extent.
Reasons People Are Playing More Games During the Pandemic
There has been an increase in the sales and usage of video games because people are not able to leave their homes so often. Sure, life is coming back to normal gradually, but a pandemic might change your entertainment habits for good, albeit slightly. It will further permeate the world of gaming culture.
Actual sporting events have been cancelled, so people turn to esports for the same thrills.
Video games have been another alternative. It can help in promoting mental wellness. It can connect people over a distance offering communities where people are going to feel a sense of belonging. This can help people to recover from anxiety and stress.
Pandemic has caused social anxiety in many. However, playing video games can bring substantial benefits to such people. It will help you to connect with others more easily. Even during this time of the pandemic, it will make you feel socially competent. The game world will appear to be less broken than the actual one.
Socializing through games can be very good. It can be pretty meaningful for people. The video game serves as a temporary escape from the world of coronavirus. Inside the game, there isn’t pressure or anxiety about lockdowns. Though escapism is not a solution, it can alleviate some downsides of being locked at home. This form of entertainment simply helps get distracted for a while. But don’t play it for hours on end since it can lead to damaging effects. So, balance your gaming time with other duties.
In the game, you might be the only one fighting against the enemy, but you are definitely not lonely.
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