We’re not necessarily talking about gamers who need to eat more Subway sandwiches here, but rather people who are gaming fanatics. Enough to dedicate large blocks of time and money to thier hobby. So who are they and what are their defining characteristics? A recent survey says that the so-called “Heavy Gamers” make up about 2% of all gamers:
“The 2 percent Heavy Gamer crowd comes from about 191 million total gamers, representing just 3.8 million individuals, and yet their wallets pack quite a punch. Heavy Gamers purchased the most titles (13.1 in the past three months), while Avid Console Gamers purchased 1.9 titles, and Mass Market Gamers purchased 2.0 titles.
Unsurprisingly, Heavy Gamers also play more frequently than any other group, both overall (39.3 hours/week of gameplay on any system) and by system type (23.9 hours/week playing consoles, 1.9 hours playing portables and 13.6 hours playing PC/Mac). After the Heavy Gamer, as their segmentation labels would suggest, Avid PC Gamers spend the most time on PC/Mac gaming (10.4 hours/week), while Avid Console Gamers play most with consoles (8.9 hours/week) and portables (0.8 hours/week).”
While there were a few big surprises in the study, perhaps the biggest included the age range of the "Heavy Gamers": most are between 6-17! That’s a major dileniation between them and the next group of gamers, termed “Avid Gamers”, who number about 10 times that of the “Heavy Gamers” and typically between 18-34.
With so much potential revenue out there for the organization(s) who can figure out how to get people to turn up their gaming habits a notch or two, we’re nearly sure to see the ‘is gaming addictive?’ debate rage on for some time to come.