US consumers are spending less money on video games than they did in 2021
Spending has decreased by 13% compared with Q2 2021, according to The NPD Group
➡️ The Shortcut Skinny
📉 Video game spending in 2022 declined by 13% in the second quarter compared to the same period last year
💰 Total spend amounted to $12.35 billion, a drop of $1.71 billion
📱 Decreased mobile spending is one of the biggest reasons for the decline
🆚 Nintendo Switch sold the most during Q2 2022, but PS5 generated the highest dollar sales
💵 The drop in spending can be attributed to the cost of living increase, the return of experiential spending such as travel, and a lack of marquee releases
A US study has found that video game spending has dropped considerably during the second quarter of this year compared to 2021.
According to a report from The NPD Group, spending has dropped 13% in Q2 2022 (April – June), with total consumer spending on video games amounting to $12.35 billion, which is $1.71 billion less than what consumers spent during the same period last year.
The only spending category that increased was non-mobile subscription spending, which suggests more people are subscribing to Xbox Game Pass, Nintendo Switch Online, and PlayStation Plus. Hardware and accessories declined 1% and 11%, respectively.
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Mobile content was the biggest contributor to the overall decline in total consumer spending. Fewer people spent money on mobile games like Candy Crush Saga, Clash of Clans, Coin Master, Diablo Immortal, Pokémon Go, and Angry Birds 2 during the first quarter.
In terms of the best-selling and most played games across all platforms in Q2 2022, the list includes Among Us, Call of Duty: Warzone, Elden Ring, Fortnite, GTA 5, Kirby and the Forgotten Land, LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga, Madden NFL 22, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Minecraft, MLB The Show 22, Roblox, and The Sims 4.
Games industry analyst at The NPD Group Mat Piscatella said the drop in video game spending could continue in the coming quarters and noted several factors that have changed compared to last year.
“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.
“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.”
The best-selling console during Q2 2022 was the Nintendo Switch, while PS5 generated the highest dollar sales in the second quarter, likely due to retailers offering bundles. Most PS5 restock bundles now include Horizon Forbidden West as standard, which is one of the best PS5 games.
A drop in overall spending isn’t too surprising
The NPD Group’s reports mirror the financial results of Sony and Microsoft. Microsoft saw a decline in gaming revenue, even though Xbox Series X|S continue to break records. Sony, in comparison, saw software sales plummet, but PS5 sales have reached 21.7 million. Sony has said PS5 stock will improve in time for the holidays, as supply constraints continue to impact the console’s success.
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