A new blog post that I’m introducing from this week is the “Weekly Update”. The Weekly Update includes a round up of news stories, articles and data points that have been shared by various publications, market researchers and Video Game companies over the past week. Most of the time this update will include a short extract of each article with a link to the full article, sometimes I will add in my own thoughts if there is something of interest to add.
According to eSports and Streaming Gameplay, the latest report from global information provider, The NPD Group, 44 percent of current gamers have watched either formal eSports competitions or informal video streaming of gameplay in the past six months.
Those gamers are averaging close to three hours per watching session, with 18 percent watching some form of video game play on a daily basis, and another 46 percent watching weekly.
Nvida’s Investor day had some interesting data about how a PS4 comparable graphics card can now be bought for under $200. There are nearly 80 million GeForce customers who currently own a GPU less powerful than a 960GTX and therefore are ready to upgrade in order to experience better than PS4 graphics.
Korean publisher Daum Games has sold more than 400,000 copies of its Black Desert Online MMO role-playing game after only a month on the market in Europe and North America. The developer brought the fantasy game to the West in March at $30, $50, and $100 pricing tiers, and it has instantly clicked with a large audience. Daum thinks the game will likely even keep growing its momentum moving forward, which is proof that the MMO market can support more than World of Warcraft and an endless pile of free-to-play competitors. In a gaming market worth $99.3 billion, Black Desert is showing that studios have different paths to profitability.
“Considering the upward trend, I expect that the game will achieve over 1 million sales this year,” Daum Games Europe chief executive Min Kim said in a statement. “What’s impressive is these figures far exceed those in the domestic market.”
One of the big takeaways about Black Desert Online is that free-to-play in its home territory of Korea. Players in that country are much more accustomed to having to pay to make decent progress in their online RPGs, but Daum points out that Western audiences are different. Many of them would rather pay up front so that they don’t have to think about spending money.
Still, only 22% of gamers have heard of the Rift, with awareness for the Vive and PSVR even lower
According to Nielsen’s newest 360 Gaming Report, which is based on online surveys completed by more than 2,000 teens/adults over age 13, 37 percent of all US gamers have heard of at least one VR/AR device, but on an individual basis, the three VR headsets currently on the market or hitting the market later this year have a fair amount of work to do in spreading awareness. As you might expect, Oculus is leading the pack (see chart below) but not even a quarter of gamers are familiar with the Rift.
While Twitch has been popular for game streaming and event streaming of all sorts, it’s the eSports boom that’s really fueled the platform’s momentum, according to research group Newzoo. Based on an analysis of all hours watched on Twitch from July to December 2015, Newzoo found that 21.3 percent of viewership was from eSports competitions.
“While it is often said that Twitch was the true accelerator of the growth of eSports in the West, it is sometimes overlooked how, conversely, eSports has helped Twitch grow to the massive live video platform it is today,” Newzoo noted.
Newzoo found 475.5 million hours of eSports content watched across all eSports franchises, representing an average of over 79 million hours per month. There were some notable differences in engagement, however, when it comes to eSports content compared to game content streamed by consumers. The steady top five that generate the most hours watched on Twitch are League of Legends, Dota 2, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Hearthstone, and StarCraft II, but their engagement varies quite a bit, as you can see in the chart below. Dota 2 and StarCraft II dominate eSports engagement with 51.9 percent and 47.4 percent, respectively, of eSports hours compared to consumer hours.
‘Tom Clancy’s ‘The Division’ (-37%) holds on to No1 for a fourth consecutive week, becoming Ubisoft’s longest unbroken run at the top of the All Formats Chart.
‘Far Cry Primal’ (-8%) continues to claw its way back up the chart, climbing one place to No2, giving Ubisoft the top two games this week. It is a quiet week for new releases with no new titles breaking in to the Top 40. The only titles in the Top 10 to benefit from sales jumps are ‘Grand Theft Auto V’ (+18%) up from No6 to No4 and ‘Tom Clancy’s Rainbow 6: Siege’ (+21%) also up two place, rising from No10 to No8.
Here is a look at Home/Handheld console hardware unit shipments from 2008 to 2015. Peak of >100m shipped in 2008. pic.twitter.com/mTD9HjgRED
— ZhugeEX (@ZhugeEX) April 5, 2016
Updated the Japanese home console sales graph.
As you can see, Gen 8 is trailing behind the others, badly. pic.twitter.com/5Jv3HLchhG
— ZhugeEX (@ZhugeEX) April 6, 2016
Here is a look at PS4 and Wii U sales in Japan when you align launches.
PS4 sold worse for a while but now leads. pic.twitter.com/mZ8yjLH8Qv
— ZhugeEX (@ZhugeEX) April 6, 2016