The following is a guest post
As the gaming industry has broadened into the various different sectors, the definition of a ‘gamer’ has lost its defined meaning. In the past, a gamer was an owner of a games console, such as a Sega, Nintendo, PlayStation or Xbox. However, in recent years, technological progression has allowed people to connect to games from a number of different devices.
People can now connect to the various games from the consoles, portable gaming devices (such as PS Vita and Gameboy), online/social games (accessed from web browsers) and smartphones. As you can imagine, there are different demographics of players who like to play on each type of gaming. In this article, we will discuss the definition of the average social gamer, a discovery which you might find slightly surprising…
A recent survey from PopCap games publishers showed that the type of person most likely to be playing social games such as FarmVille and Mafia was is not a teenager, but instead is a 43-year-old with a full time job and children. It was also found that a social gamer was more likely to be female and that they will revisit the game on several occasions throughout the day. It was found that the games they are most likely to be playing include Bejeweled Blitz, Café World and Farmville and that they will likely have played at least six different games, often recommended by friends.
Of all social gamers, Facebook is the preferred online destination. A staggering 83% of everyone questioned replied that they would rather play on Facebook over any other social network. This revelation is by no means surprising, given the general world Facebook domination. As well as this, most game developers push their releases onto Facebook before any other platform, as they know that this way it will reach the maximum possible amount of people. For example, bingo sites have launched their social apps so people can play bingo on Facebook.
When it comes to spending while on these games, over half of those surveyed said that they have earned and spent virtual currency while playing games, where only 28% actually spend real cash to buy virtual currency. The respondents were also asked about the ads they had seen and 25% claimed to have been misled by one of the advertisements or special offers they were offered. This only goes to consolidate the complaints about the integrity of these apps in 2012.
Although the focus of this discussion has been on women, men should in no way be ignored. They account for 45% of all players and with the various male-targeted franchise spinoffs on the way (such as Madden and Civilisation Network), this number is expected to grow significantly by the year’s end.
The Gender Difference
As with any video games, attitudes towards social gaming differ between the sexes. Amongst the most active social players, woman make up a clear majority. When asked about whether they player regularly throughout the day, 38% of women responded positively, compared to 28% of men.
The study also found that women were much more likely than men to be linking up with their existing friends on social games (68% compared to 56%). However, it was found that men were far more likely to play with strangers, at a percentage of 41% against 33% for women. The number of women who play said that they play games with relatives was almost double that of men.
It was found the most of social gamers were active on multiple occasions per week. A massive 66% were found to play once or more per day.
When comparing UK to US players, more Americans said that they play daily (68% compared to 55%).
When asked about the length of gaming sessions,. 61% of players said that they lasted over an hour. One in ten players said that their gaming sessions regularly go beyond three hours!
Edward Simpson – M.A in business management, specializing in digital marketing. His focus nowadays is on marketing social games. He provides consultation to mybingoday.co.uk and to other new bingo sites.