Video games, record collections in Italy: over 2 billion euros in 2020

Video games, record collections in Italy: over 2 billion euros in 2020

Video games, record collections in Italy

The video game market recorded record revenues in Italy: in 2020 the turnover of this sector in our country was equal to over 2 billion euros, with a growth of 21.9% and a total of 16.7 millions of users involved.

If in 2019 the console market fell to the detriment of the mobile one, in the year that has just ended, also due to the pandemic, all the indicators have increased. Specifically, the average time dedicated to videogames has gone from 7.5 to 8 hours per week.

IIDEA, the Association that represents the videogame industry in Italy, today releases the data on the market and on videogame consumers in Italy in 2020. The sector records a historic performance: in fact, it grows by 21.9% compared to the previous survey and achieves a turnover of 2 billion and 179 million euros.

The pandemic that hit us at the beginning of 2020 and which unfortunately is still ongoing has had a major impact on many sectors, including entertainment. The video game market in Italy, as well as in the rest of the world, has continued to grow in the wake of the trend started by several and has recorded exceptional numbers.

Videogames, the sector grew by 21.9% in 2020 in Italy. Sales on the software front still drove the sector with a turnover of 1.7 billion euros and a growth of 24.8% compared to 2019. In particular, the digital segment, including digital downloads on consoles and PC and apps, it recorded the biggest expansion, going from 602 million euros the previous year to 799 million euros in 2020.

Thanks to the good performance of the next gen consoles - the new PS5 and Xbox Series released in November 2020 - and of Nintendo Switch, the sector generated a turnover of 395 million euros with a growth trend of 6.9%.

"2020 was an extremely positive year for the video game sector, with a market that in Italy continues to grow year after year and that in the last twelve months has registered record numbers. This significant growth is not only the result of the pandemic that made us spend more time at home but is a testimony to the growing interest in video games as a form of entertainment and communication ", said Marco Saletta, President of IIDEA.

The next-gen consoles have started well in Italy. "In fact, 2020 marked a turning point also in the social and cultural perception of the medium and brought with it a broader understanding by public opinion of the potential of the video game as a tool for socializing and learning".

The data contained in the report have been elaborated on the basis of a research methodology curated and promoted at an international level by the European federation of the videogame industry (Interactive Software Federation of Europe, ISFE), and refer to three different sources: GSD (Games Sales Data) for retail data related to the physical market, GSD (Games Sales Data) and GameTrack for data related to digital products, App Annie and Game Track for data related to the mobile market.

Consumer data, collected in the fourth quarter of 2020 as part of the GameTrack project, are based on the administration of an online and an offline survey on a representative sample of the population aged 6 to 64.

FIFA 21 was the best-selling game in Italy in 2020. The aggregate ranking (all platforms, physical and digital) is led by FIFA 21, followed by Grand Theft Auto V and FIFA 20, the same podium as the Top 10 console video games.

The best-selling genres in 2020 were Action, Sports Games and Adventure. Interesting is the third place of the Strategy genre in the Top 10 relating solely to the best-selling video games on PC. "With an increase of 21.9% compared to 2019, for the first time the Italian video game market exceeded the 2 billion euro threshold. in 2020, thanks to the excellent performance of software sales with a turnover of almost 1.8 billion euros ", said Antonio Rubio, International Sales Director of B2Boost.

"Although the aggregate hardware segment recorded an overall increase of 10.3%, the growth in software sales is the most significant. In particular, digital downloads faced the strongest expansion with a turnover of 799 million euros compared to 602 million euros the previous year. To a large extent, due to the pandemic and the blockades, Italian consumers have bought more games digitally, having less chance to buy them at retail. "

The action genre was the most successful in 2020 in Italy. Italian gamers and the impact of COVID-19 on their habits

The number of gamers has remained substantially unchanged compared to the previous survey, with 16.7 million people who have tried their hand at video games during the course of the year, that is 38% of the Italian population between 6 and 64 years old. However, the involvement in video games has grown.

Probably as an effect of the longer time spent at home, in 2020 Italians spent an average of 8 hours a week playing on all devices, over half an hour more than the previous survey. There was an increase in the time dedicated to all platforms, with the exception of older consoles - such as PS3 and Xbox360 - and smartphones which recorded a slight decrease compared to 2019.

The pandemic that has hit us all he beginning of last year and which unfortunately is still ongoing has had a major impact on many sectors, including entertainment. The report also analyzed the influence of COVID-19 on consumer gaming habits: the analysis of the data collected showed that in 2020 the playing time reached peaks during periods of lockdown or intensification of restrictions. , with a year-over-year increase of about an extra hour of play per week during the first and second waves.

In addition, the analysis revealed how online multiplayer video games played a supporting role for gamers during the restrictions caused by the pandemic: 50% used them to stay in touch with friends, 48 % to feel less isolated, 39% as a tool to feel less anxious - and over a third of them (36%) said that video games helped them feel happy.

Video games to feel happy. Even in the family context, video games played an important role in moments of leisure in the family: 19% of the interviewees declared that they had played video games with their children, since it rises to 22% among those who have children in the 6-10 age group and to 20% in the 11-15 year old group. In addition, 19% of parents said they used educational video games to support their learning - this rises to 29% of those with primary school-age children.

"Even in a decidedly unique context like the one we are going through, the video game audience has continued to choose this form of entertainment for their moments of leisure. Not only that, but it has also done so with a level of involvement higher than the previous surveys. We can therefore affirm that the videogame is now part of the leisure moments of the Italians ", commented Eduardo Mena, Research Director of IPSOS.

"This year we wanted to add an extra element to our analysis by focusing on the effects that the pandemic and lockdowns have had on gaming habits. From our data it emerges in particular how video games have had a positive impact on life of people, who thanks to this form of entertainment have maintained long-distance relationships, overcome loneliness and anxiety, and more generally lived large and small moments of happiness through play ".

As for the most used gaming platforms, mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets are the most popular, with over 10.6 million Italian gamers using them, including 5.2 million women. PCs follow with 7.2 million people and home consoles with 6.7 million.

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