NPD: $1.4 billion of PC gaming in 2005

Industry research group releases new estimate of US market that includes subscriptions, casual game sites, and digital distribution--as well as retail.

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In a new report this week, the NPD Group pegged the US PC gaming industry's 2005 take at $1.4 billion, according to Reuters. If that doesn't seem to match up with previously released NPD numbers pegging the 2005 US PC gaming market at $953 million, that's because the old number only took into account sales from boxed, retail versions of games.

The new NPD estimate includes roughly $292 million in subscriptions to specific PC games (an amount split between about 1.4 million paid subscribers), $52 million from casual gaming Web sites such as Electronic Arts' Pogo.com, and $42 million in digital downloads from outlets such as Valve Software's Steam service.

When the research group originally released its figures for the 2005 PC industry back in January, it noted the deficiency of its existing system of accounting for total PC sales. While the company's figures showed a decline in retail sales, its feedback from consumers indicated that playing PC games was actually on the rise.

Discussion

76 comments
jaefrmbk2k
jaefrmbk2k

infinitely better than porn but generally less appealing than actual sex UNLESS i've already had some for the day

jaefrmbk2k
jaefrmbk2k

there's jus something about pc gaming. it's always made my nads tingle and consequently made my wallet open wide.

tonemd_basic
tonemd_basic

I don't know about flag ship. It's just somethign that's always there. As long as there are computers, people will be playing games on them. And at this point in time, more working adults over 25 would more readily admit to playing pc golf games or the Sims or poker than playing Mario on a Nintendo system. So the PC has basically already reached those mainstream sectors, something theat the consoles are trying hard to attract. As more white collar workers and pc owners become increasingly PC literate beyond what it takes to do their jobs and check their emails, I think the PC gaming market will see a big increase in revenue.

TraAus
TraAus

In my opinion PC gaming has been sorta a "flag ship", if you will, to games over all. That and they have always played almost any genre that I can think of. PC gaming forever!! >: )

starcutter20000
starcutter20000

PC games allow users to express allot more creativity themselves. I don't see one console game where you can create your own levels or modify the entire game itself.

starcutter20000
starcutter20000

PC games have always had alot more depth and story then console games ever since they first came out in the eightites with games like "Zork" and "Ultima"

Xeroshift
Xeroshift

not entirely true...consoles are expensive but the parts needed for a great computer to play like FEAR would not be cheap either...SLi gfx card cost a bit...a fast processor too

LordGamer0001
LordGamer0001

sounds like the pc is still doing pretty well.

fouzanq
fouzanq

How the hell is PC gaming expensive compared to console gaming? You do realize in todays gen of consoles you dont necessarily only have to pay for a console. You've got internet connectivity services charges for services such as Xbox live then you got high priced games plus you might need a HDTV if you truly wanna enjoy better resolution the consoles are outputting , then theres the extra joystick and perepheral price ... speakers etc etc. Basically the price does brings it closer to the price of an average PC unit. And in the end the PC still owns because tis hardware is more integrated , and you can do a whole lot more with it apart from gaming like coming on these forums ....

Humorguy_basic
Humorguy_basic

Sales down again in retail, online sales are easy to manipulate (if an online game forces you to pay upfront then let's you have 30 days to cancel the charge and you do - guess what? You will still get counted as a subscriber for the month (or whole year!). And I do not believe that online sales are 40+% of gaming's total sales. Given the industry's push into online/download selling, due to the huge profits able to be made from consumers (a 5-6 hour "episode" for $10 - meaning an Oblivion would be $100+ and with no packaging, no printed manual and you providing the CD/DVD to copy the data onto the profits would be huge), about the only figures I trust are the, once again, lower retail sales. If you think that PC gaming will survive in any meaningful way with no retail "shop window" then you're living in cloud cuckoo land. Redx14 could well be proved wrong in the next 2-3 years and incossee shows how "shallow" even the lower retail sales are once you take out the 3 or 4 huge sellers from last year. Bearing in mind that if you go back to the mid 90's thru to 2000, you would have games with twice the sales of Half Life 2, or Far Cry, or Morrowind, or Oblivion EVERY Month!!

runstalker
runstalker

GBA, DS, PSP, PS2, PS3, Gamecube, Wii, Xbox, Xbox 360...of course there's room for PC gaming in there! It's an era of unprecedented western consumerism--people are buying everything in a mad spree of ownership designed to make them feel better about their mortality. Or something.

faizali86
faizali86

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

faizali86
faizali86

reasons why pc gaming is still alive: 1. the price for pc games comes down faster than any other console game 2. shooters and strategy games are best played on pc 3. casual gamers do not want to shell out money on a console what disappoints me is that pc gamers need to spend a lot on upgrading their pc's and most games today are system hogs. dont get me wrong though, i love pc games.

Paladriver
Paladriver

Launch all ICBMs... the consoles shall feel our fury!

sam169
sam169

>>I doubt they include hardware sales. I mean you don't really know whether that mouse someone buys is for gaming or just for work.>> >>Do you really need that 70 dollar mouse, if you are just working?>> Actually, graphic designers and such really do need a precise mouse for work.

chrisdojo
chrisdojo

that's billion...... noobs, pc gaming is still alive and kicking.

bunty_007
bunty_007

They will make another X box with this money

skemaal
skemaal

I play a lot more PC games than console games. People who say that not much comes from PC gaming are on major crack. Half Life, Doom, Quake, Unreal, F.E.A.R, FarCry, Battle For Middle Earth, are all games that came on the PC way before any console. It's the same everytime a new generation of consoles are release. "Oh no, it's the end of the PC". It was like that when PS2 came out and it's like that again today. In 18 months, games will look better, again, on PC than xb360 and ps3. PC graphics evolves every 6 months while console graphics are pretty much stuck with the same technology for 5-6 years at least.

vaejas
vaejas

Still very respectable compared to the average annual $5 billion in console software sales. I'm guessing that PC and handheld games are about even right now. Consider that all game sales for this Jan-March alone were 1.2 billion. But it's difficult to compare apples and oranges since a $2000 PC has a lot more uses than a $400 console, and there's a lot more (legit) free gaming to be found on PCs. And most of these figures are only counting the U.S.

tr00pa_26
tr00pa_26

thats really good! thats where it all started!! the PC it should hang a bit longer!!

rwbojorquez
rwbojorquez

PC will always be better it you have enough money to back it up. Especially with quad SLI to have over 1G of memory wow. thats a lot. but because of this same reason it affects somewhat the pc game industry.

Hermes2006
Hermes2006

I'm primarily a PC gamer though I intend to buy the 360 as well.PC gaming is always first with innovations and we've been enjoyin high res gaming forever.My gripe with consoles were the low res,messy textures and downright sh@#y controls for FPS.The next gen consoles improved everything somewhat.Also PC hardware is too expensive that makes it inaccessible to most people.That is the possible downfall of PC gaming in the future.PC gaming can be a social event with games supporting multiple monitors.Friends can game together with seperate monitors racing each other on e.g. NFS!However MS is trying revitalise PC gaming through its Games for Windows effort.However without lower prices on hardware PC games will remain for the elite few.

ohmshalone
ohmshalone

Can some1 give a site where i can compare this to consoles?

yiwind0101
yiwind0101

pc gaming is growing,sepcially MMOG

funboy05
funboy05

What's this non-sense of PC gaming dead. We will never give up our mice and keyboards away. Lol. Amazing how fast the gaming industry is growing. I only play PC games anyways and I'm fairly pleased with the games. I think the numbers are only going to grow with upcoming games, especially for PC, it hasn't been a better time to be a PC gamer.

darkfox101
darkfox101

Nubs! told u pc gaming pwns.. JOIN US

drollia
drollia

good to see that PC gaming is still alive and doing well

mclazyj
mclazyj

Sweet news. Finally, something in factual print that will shut up those that continue to say PC gaming is dead.

wytefang
wytefang

As we already all knew this, well at least the non-hype driven console fanatics. LOL Poor Gamespot, it looks like they may be focusing too much on the wrong gaming platforms all of a sudden. LOL

runstalker
runstalker

I happen to enjoy Steam. Just when you think you're out of games to play, they have Darwinia, all the Source remakes, Red Orchestra, SiN Episodes, HL 2 Episodes, etc. I'm fine with dropping $19.99 to $29.99 on that stuff.

andrew1969
andrew1969

Great News for PC gamers. I have been around long enough to remember the "death knell" ringing for PC Games more than once. The Xbox and PS2 were that last PC killers, and now everyone is sure Xbox 360 and PS3 will kill it. The fact remains that the best games usually are released on the PC, and the PC will still be here long after the PS3 and 360 are dead. Ironically, I doubt the original xbox would have ever survived if MS did not buy Bungie and force a re-write of a PC only "Halo" to an exclusive xbox title. I own consoles, they are great for sports and driving games when playing with friends. However, my heart belongs to the PC - looking forward to Crysis! Eat that "next-gen" consoles.

NandoSupes
NandoSupes

thats a lot of dinero, glad to see that pc gaming is doing so well

theKSMM
theKSMM

PC gaming won't die...I won't let it. Even though I've recently moved into the realm of console gaming, I still find the PC the most dynamic platform, and the one where new technology arrives first.

theKSMM
theKSMM

That's true of any platform, and probably of any medium, period. I could say it about the DS, PS2, music sales, books...anything. There are a few standouts that account for the lion's share of sales, and then a lot of also-rans.

decebal
decebal

PC gaming will be here long after all these consoles are dead. LOL

evilbanshee
evilbanshee

"Do you really need that 70 dollar mouse, if you are just working?" You never know. Someone might want it because they have money to spend and want the best, like the ergonomic feel, and it looks snazzy.

jamil2nice
jamil2nice

including PC hardware would be rediculous especially because businesses buy them too, as for the market in total, this is not surprising, PC gaming is the single most popular platform, and obviously outpaces console gaming in 3rd world countries it will only grow with Windows Vista and Xbox 360 accesories as well as the episodic style of distribution (HL2, Sin) also check out who won for best graphics in GotY (overall FEAR) and best graphics (for a playable game) at E3 (overall Crysis)

mikemil828
mikemil828

>>I doubt they include hardware sales. I mean you don't really know whether that mouse someone buys is for gaming or just for work.>> Do you really need that 70 dollar mouse, if you are just working?

evilbanshee
evilbanshee

mikemil828 I doubt they include hardware sales. I mean you don't really know whether that mouse someone buys is for gaming or just for work.