US consumers spent almost $2 billion less on video games last quarter compared to 2021

midian182

Posts: 8,152   +97
Staff member
What just happened? It's not just tech products that are suffering in these times of economic caution; video game sales have also fallen in the last year—by almost $2 billion, according to a new report. It's the latest sign that the lockdown-induced boom period is well and truly behind us.

Market research firm NPD writes that US spending on video gaming, which covers content, hardware, and accessories, reached $12.35 billion in the most recent quarter. That's still a lot of money, but it's down $1.78 billion, or 13 percent, compared to the same period last year.

Looking at some individual segments, content spending in Q2 reached $10.97 billion, marking another 13% decrease compared to Q2 2021. Hardware and accessories declined 1% and 11%, respectively, but it was mobile content that contributed most to the overall decline.

However, there was a single content segment that did see year-on-year growth: non-mobile subscription spending, which was up 15% in the second quarter. So it's good news for the likes of Microsoft's Xbox/PC Game Pass service. Interestingly, Sony's PlayStation Plus Extra and Premium tiers only launched near the end of the quarter, so they wouldn't have contributed very much to the figures.

As we've seen in other industries, consumers still spent more on video gaming this year than in the pre-pandemic era, but the post-lockdown effect and rising cost of living are affecting YoY growth.

"Higher prices in everyday spending categories such as food and gas, the return of experiential spending such as travel and attending live events, a lighter release slate of new games, and continued new generation console hardware supply constraints were all likely contributors to the decline seen in the second quarter," said Mat Piscatella, games industry analyst at The NPD Group.

"After a period of sustained growth, consumer spending continues to trend above pre-pandemic levels. However, unpredictable and quickly changing conditions may continue to impact the market in unexpected ways in the coming quarters."

NPD also reports that LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga was the quarter's best-selling premium game. The Nintendo Switch led the way in hardware sales, something we've seen virtually every quarter since the handheld hybrid launched in March 2017. However, the PlayStation 5 generated the highest dollar sales.

This week has seen Sony revise its annual profit forecast on the back of weaker software sales, which fell 26% YoY in Q2. Microsoft's gaming revenue was down 7%, and Nintendo is expected to reveal a yearly decline in hardware sales tomorrow.

Masthead: Olena Yakobchuk 

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George Keech

Posts: 250   +431
This is a problem with capitalism (although I'm not against it) these industries increased as an outlier. so them now going down and arguably normalising should not be seen as a massive negative more of a normalisation
 

Theinsanegamer

Posts: 3,530   +5,966
"you will own nothing and you will be happy" was not supposed to be an instruction manual. Why gamers continue to overspend on subscription servies is beyond me.

Still, I think part of the reduced spending is just the lack of anything good to play. For years we've had one mediocre title after another, all creatively bankrupt beige paste. Sooner or later people will get bored.
 

kira setsu

Posts: 354   +309
"you will own nothing and you will be happy" was not supposed to be an instruction manual. Why gamers continue to overspend on subscription servies is beyond me.

Still, I think part of the reduced spending is just the lack of anything good to play. For years we've had one mediocre title after another, all creatively bankrupt beige paste. Sooner or later people will get bored.
theres plenty great games to play, we always have great games to play.

the issue is that everything else in life is getting tougher and more expensive to deal with, food, rents, vehicles, basic maintenance just to live is costlier and costlier.

for me gaming is my hobby/vice of choice so I keep a small stash ready for whatever game I want(lookin at you spideyman) but for alot of people that isnt the case and I get that.
 

Theinsanegamer

Posts: 3,530   +5,966
theres plenty great games to play, we always have great games to play.

the issue is that everything else in life is getting tougher and more expensive to deal with, food, rents, vehicles, basic maintenance just to live is costlier and costlier.

for me gaming is my hobby/vice of choice so I keep a small stash ready for whatever game I want(lookin at you spideyman) but for alot of people that isnt the case and I get that.
The new games of today dont hold a candle to the early 2010s, let alone the PS2 golden era.
The quality of games drops like Biden's approval rating. The gaming industry is all about selling dlc and other in game items, gives zero sh!t about game contents
Dont forget a healthy dose of social virtue signalling, unfinished buggy products, charaters that are hollowed caricatures of what they used to be, terrible writing, ece.

And the cherry on the sunday, attacking their audiences for disliking these moves.
 

Neatfeatguy

Posts: 933   +1,620
This is a problem with capitalism (although I'm not against it) these industries increased as an outlier. so them now going down and arguably normalising should not be seen as a massive negative more of a normalisation

Sadly, it doesn't work that way when your bottom line is $$$$.

Right now most of the tech industry is looking like horsebutt because most are under reporting YoY. For some stupid reason investors and businesses actually seem to have thought that the forced lock downs that boosted their sales for almost 2 years was going to last forever once things went back to normal.....almost makes you wonder how smart these people actually are that run these companies or if they just got lucky and fell into their high salaried positions.
 

Kirby1

Posts: 174   +283
There are not a lot of interesting games. Next gen hasnt kicked off. We've been seeing next gen demos for years now but nothing had materialized. We're still in the ps4 era two years into ps5.
 

EdmondRC

Posts: 312   +422
Honestly, I feel like our culture has just lost its creativity. We are hyper focused on being inoffensive and inclusive and so all that is being churned out are horrible games and movies that no one really wants to play or watch. Predictable nonsense that lectures us on what to think and how bad we are if we think differently. There are a few exceptions like Elden Ring and Top Gun Maverick, but all you have to do is take one look at Disney and you know what I'm talking about. Obi Wan? What the heck was that? We've replaced heroes with social justice warriors and its just not any fun.
 
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EdmondRC

Posts: 312   +422
The new games of today dont hold a candle to the early 2010s, let alone the PS2 golden era.

Dont forget a healthy dose of social virtue signalling, unfinished buggy products, charaters that are hollowed caricatures of what they used to be, terrible writing, ece.

And the cherry on the sunday, attacking their audiences for disliking these moves.

Yes, one of the effects of loss of culture is loss of the arts. I feel like we are experiencing that now. You can't watch a movie or play a videogame without being lectured. On the other hand, you can't write a story that is seen as "offensive" to certain groups without immediate social backlash. There was once a day where you didn't like it, you just didn't buy it. Not anymore, certain groups have determined if they don't like it, it can't exist and that people must be punished for not sharing their opinion or paying homage to them.
 

kira setsu

Posts: 354   +309
The new games of today dont hold a candle to the early 2010s, let alone the PS2 golden era.

Dont forget a healthy dose of social virtue signalling, unfinished buggy products, charaters that are hollowed caricatures of what they used to be, terrible writing, ece.

And the cherry on the sunday, attacking their audiences for disliking these moves.
ps2 was a beast but have you played guardians of the galaxy, uncharted 4, forza horizon, ac odyssey, ff14, new doom, control, horizon, tomb raider etc etc etc.

so many great titles stand out in the ocean of terrible BS the gaming industry lives in. I think we look back on the ps2 golden era because it wasnt sullied by dlc, mtx, online shenanigans and constant info streams that hype up games for literal years.
 

ZackL04

Posts: 843   +647
Yeah no S***

We are back to work and covid quarantine times have shrunk my more than half.

We arent asked to sit in the corner anymore
 
The only game I have purchased since 2021 has been Elden Ring. Most games have bug issues on release. Denuvo is an automatic no buy until it is removed. Plus, the growing number of games attached to another service like U(Don't)Play. Attacks on the modding community from Rockstar are also and issue I have with the gaming industry.

Most games have to go through what I call a Steam Sale/GOG sale wait-and-see before I contemplate buying these days.
 

Hodor

Posts: 113   +67
Damn Putin. If he didn't attack Ukraine, we'd still enjoy COVID. We'd still have an increase in game and antidepressant sales.

What's worse, just when it seemed that COVID would make a big come back, Chinese govt started making their moves. I think they are doing it on purpose.

#LetsMakeCovidGreatAgain