Superdata, a data analyst company has reported this week that digital game sales have increased by 7% over last year’s sales. While that doesn’t seem like much, it’s a sign that gamers are more inclined to buy through their respective digital game stores, instead of waiting for launch day collections. Let’s have a look at why.
With the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, a lot of pre-loading and installing is involved. Sure, it takes a little longer on the Xbox, but it’s still time consuming. Gone are the days of popping in the disc, straight out of the lovely-smelling packaging, and playing the game. Now you have to sit and wait, and in many cases, there are no instruction manuals like those found years ago, giving character and background lore. Both Xbox One and PlayStation 4 players have the opportunity to pre-load their games a week before a game’s launch, allowing them to play the game at the stroke of midnight at launch. It’s a feature that Steam players have had access to for years, so it’s nice to see consoles adapting to that feature.
While many may still argue about paying to own a physical disc instead of a downloaded title, I often question their music libraries in comparison. How many people still carry discman devices around with them, for example? There is also the benefit of sharing games across multiple platforms, a feature that justifies the slightly higher prices of digital titles, despite the fact no packaging or middle-man is involved. The prices really do need to change somewhat to reflect this.
“With the exception of pay-to-play MMOs, all segments managed to grow their revenue,” Superdata CEO Joost van Dreunen said. “Digital console revenues rose 14 percent year-over-year to $375 million, driven in particular by a spending increase in North America. The growing install base for both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One drove digital console earnings by 41 percent.”
Top selling digital titles by category, October 2015
- Digital console
- 1. FIFA 16
- 2. Destiny
- 3. Grand Theft Auto V
- 4. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare
- 5. FIFA 15
- PC DLC
- 1. Counter-Strike: Global Offensive
- 2. Grand Theft Auto V
- 3. Guild Wars 2
- 4. Minecraft
- 5. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain