Video games are just for kids? Definitely not in this day and age. Considering how massively video games have expanded in their approach to appeal to all age groups, and with most people having their own personal handheld computer already in their back pocket, it comes to no surprise that we are seeing an all around rise in gamer demographics. But is there a difference in gaming when it comes to different generations? Be warned, you might not leave this post with the answer you expected.
Before we get into the meat and potatoes, please be aware that most of these statistics are based on research that was done in the US.
Let’s first settle who we’re talking about when we say "typical gamer". According to a survey held by the ESA ( Entertainment Software Association ), the average gamer is male, about 34 years old, owns a house and has kids. Not what you expected? Maybe. When it comes to female gamers specifically, the average is even higher, at about 36 years.
But it gets even more interesting when you look into what gamers are buying, when they are buying.
When it comes to a typical Millennials’ taste in virtual leisure activities, it seems like there is a big overall overlap with Gen Z. One very interesting observation you can make however, is the fact that we’re introducing a new genre of gaming in demographics: online gambling. A trend that only seems to get more popular, the older the age group gets.
This generation has undoubtedly grown up with the very start of the gaming industry. When Pong was released for example, a lot of Gen Xers would have been around 10 years old. Very impressionable years for a child, to say the least.
And when you compare Gen X with Millennials you’ll see, that it’s definitely left an impression.
A lot of more “regular Gamers” in the Gen X demographic, love playing computer based, text heavy, strategy games, whereas you can see that patience and attention slowly dwindling the younger a generation gets.
Another interesting observation is the fact, that differences between genders in gaming preferences seem to go down, the older the generation gets. With Gen X, we have almost the same statistics of male and female gamers who prefer mobile to computer gaming, and vice versa.
By this point, you're probably curious about our beloved elder generation. Even if your grandma isn't the first example that you think of when you're picturing hardcore gamers, she might not be as out of the loop as you think.
First of, while the gaming industry has profited from every demographic during this pandemic, it's safe to say that seniors had the most marginal rise in gaming across all age groups. That becomes clear very quickly, when looking at some statistics; a survey done by Stannah, a service that assembles and installs chairlifts for elderly and disabled, finds that at least 1 out of 3 asked seniors admitted to only having started gaming since or because of the pandemic.
Whether it's an escape, a way to keep in touch with loved ones, or just a time killer; most seniors in this survey have reported to have had a very positive, long-lasting experience with gaming throughout the pandemic.