92% of PC sales are digital

#1 Posted by The_Last_Ride (72283 posts) -

Link

So a lot of people buy it digitally, what a shocker :3

Interactive entertainment research firm DFC Intelligence revealed recently that approximately 92 percent of all global game sales on PC take the form of downloads, with less than 10 percent making up physical copies.

The study notes that this research tracked game sales only, excluding all hardware and accessories. DFC expects the number of digital game sales to continue increasing over the next few years.

Despite the movement toward digital purchases, many companies are still hesitant to release information regarding the number of downloaded game copies. However, NPD's recent tracking of digital game sales has revealed that physical sales have fallen in the wake of a general surge in popularity for downloads.

This news arrives not long after the announcement that the PC gaming market has surpassed that of consoles in terms of net revenue.

Interestingly, a recent polling of Twitter on IGN revealed that a lot of gamers still prefer physical copies of games to digital. What do you think?

#2 Posted by Ish_basic (4029 posts) -

kinda hard to buy the physical copy of a PC game when retailers hardly stock any....meanwhile, there's like 60 copies of a console game on day one. I prefer physical editions but I'm forced into DD when it comes to PC games. This study sounds like the poll results of a middle eastern election... "Incumbent president Hubbni von Dictator received 98% of the votes...the people love him!"

But the other thing is the sales for digital are insane. It's like on the Steam sale earlier this year where you could buy the first two Witcher games for around $6...for both. You just don't see that shit at retailers.

#3 Edited by SolidTy (43752 posts) -

Yes, this was reported in another forum...

I'll just use that post:

---

Considering the same DRM that prevents selling/lending/trading/gifting/collecting is in the physical copies of PC games, there is little reason to buy physical retail copies of PC games.

You get DRM either way. I'm surprised it's not a higher percentage actually.

Companies gain so much with DD, it' only makes sense. I hope the console sector continues to offer choice between DRM free console physical copes and DD copies.

I do buy PC games of course, but since they have DRM I'm always buying them cheap. That's the trick. You give up a lot of consumer advantages, so you make sure you don't pay a premium for DD. That's how I see it, but I've been gaming since Atari so I know my views are ancient, especially compared to the new generation of gamers who are far more willing to purchase full priced DD games despite the many consumer disadvantages.

#4 Posted by Behardy24 (4557 posts) -

Honestly, I would of expected a higher percentage, something like 97-98%

#5 Posted by Planeforger (15794 posts) -

I honestly can't remember the last time I bought a pc game from a retailer. I'm surprised thst the number isn't higher as well.

#6 Posted by Byshop (11608 posts) -

That's a bit higher than I expected but I'm not that surprised. However, I clicked through the links and I don't think it's as simple as "everyone buys digital now". I think there are other factors like the proliferation of indie and casual titles, which combined with digital distro makes buying games extremely accessible. I don't know about you, but if I see a $5 game that looks even remotely interesting I'll pick it up and I've done that dozens of times. That plus items like Steam sales that drop slightly older AAA titles to as low as $5 and I think I just buy a lot more games that I used to.

-Byshop

#7 Edited by illmatic87 (15287 posts) -

Not surprising at all. I ceased buying physical copies very late compared to most that game on PC. I have a bandwitth cap in my country, so Physical PC games were still appealing. But that eventually snapped when I was burnt by a fair too many physical copies that are somehow inferior to a digital one.

Now the digital PC market is so competitive. Steam Sales get the most attention, but weeks prior to the Summer Sale there was an Amazon Sale and a Humble Store sale that offered better deals; there was a GMG sale before the summer sale and GoG had its own sale when the Steam sales were happening. I have nothing against physical games, nor do I find digital more 'convenient' and I dont see the appeal of being able to trade in physical copies of games on handheld/console. I just buy what's cheaper and for PC, Digital is just cheaper. I still buy Physical games on consoles as I can import from overseas (why I dont care for trade ins since imports are exempted from EB) and the monopolized eshop/PSN/XBL prices are atrocious.

As for IGN. IGN is a multiplatform publication dedicated to coverage of big releases. So it tends to have a console centred demographic.

#8 Posted by Lulu_Lulu (13654 posts) -

Which parts of the World are most of these sales happening ?

#9 Posted by humanistpotato (533 posts) -

lol since you cant sell your hysical copy in pc, there is no reason not to buy digitally [collector's editions maybe]

also steam sales are the reason i am able to buy games so that probably hepls too

#10 Edited by The_Last_Ride (72283 posts) -

@SolidTy: it's true, there is DRM anyway

#11 Posted by johnd13 (8219 posts) -

I do prefer physical copies but steam is pushing me to the other end. I get most of my games on steam deals some of which can be ridiculously cheap, not complaining though. :P

I only go physical nowadays on race occasions and for games I deem special.

#12 Posted by AutoPilotOn (8523 posts) -

I am surprised it's not even higher. I can't remember the last physical PC game I bought. I think it was WoW when it first came out like 10 years ago.

#13 Edited by wiouds (5257 posts) -

When there is only one source of water then you will drank from it.

#14 Posted by Byshop (11608 posts) -

@wiouds said:

You there is only one source of water then you will drank from it it.

I'm not sure what language this is.

-Byshop

#15 Posted by The_Last_Ride (72283 posts) -

I prefer physical personally

#16 Edited by Ish_basic (4029 posts) -

@Byshop said:

@wiouds said:

You there is only one source of water then you will drank from it it.

I'm not sure what language this is.

-Byshop

He's right, though. When retailers aren't really stocking physical copies of PC games, and DD is the only way to purchase a game you want, you're going to buy the digital version. Using PC numbers as a way to gauge customer preference is just misleading here.

#17 Edited by Threesixtyci (4287 posts) -

Being that Steam doesn't participate in these type of reports and won't release their sale numbers to anyone.... it's probably even higher than that.

#18 Posted by The_Last_Ride (72283 posts) -

@Threesixtyci said:

Being that Steam doesn't participate in these type of reports and won't release their sale numbers to anyone.... it's probably even higher than that.

True, but it's what we know atm

#19 Posted by Ilovegames1992 (14221 posts) -

I rarely PC game but the last physical title I got was TOR. :(

Not a smart purchase.

#20 Posted by yukushi (167 posts) -

Hmmmm I thought it would have being 92.1 percent.

#21 Posted by The_Last_Ride (72283 posts) -

@yukushi said:

Hmmmm I thought it would have being 92.1 percent.

not 91.9?

#22 Posted by AcidTango (611 posts) -

No point of buying pc games in cd today since they force you to have them on mostly Steam and others like EA Origins. That's why I buy pc games when they go cheap in prices in Steam.

#23 Posted by The_Last_Ride (72283 posts) -

@AcidTango said:

No point of buying pc games in cd today since they force you to have them on mostly Steam and others like EA Origins. That's why I buy pc games when they go cheap in prices in Steam.

They require you to put in the cd key anyway

#24 Posted by Jacanuk (4726 posts) -

@The_Last_Ride said:

Link

So a lot of people buy it digitally, what a shocker :3

Interactive entertainment research firm DFC Intelligence revealed recently that approximately 92 percent of all global game sales on PC take the form of downloads, with less than 10 percent making up physical copies.

The study notes that this research tracked game sales only, excluding all hardware and accessories. DFC expects the number of digital game sales to continue increasing over the next few years.

Despite the movement toward digital purchases, many companies are still hesitant to release information regarding the number of downloaded game copies. However, NPD's recent tracking of digital game sales has revealed that physical sales have fallen in the wake of a general surge in popularity for downloads.

This news arrives not long after the announcement that the PC gaming market has surpassed that of consoles in terms of net revenue.

Interestingly, a recent polling of Twitter on IGN revealed that a lot of gamers still prefer physical copies of games to digital. What do you think?

No surprise there, today even in collectors edition the game itself comes with a steam code or other DD-code.

Also i cant even remember when the last time i bought a physical copy of game, think it was just about the time steam came out.

#25 Posted by The_Last_Ride (72283 posts) -

@Jacanuk: not all of them though

#26 Edited by Jacanuk (4726 posts) -

@The_Last_Ride said:

@Jacanuk: not all of them though

True not all but so far 4 out of 5 i have bought had a blu-ray cover with a DD code inside,

#27 Edited by wiouds (5257 posts) -

I feel sorry for PC only gamers since now 92% of all they paid for can be taken away legally by companies.

#28 Posted by Jacanuk (4726 posts) -

@wiouds said:

I feel sorry for PC only gamers since now 92% of all they paid for can be taken away legally by companies.

Actually no they can't, most consumer laws have protections against you losing ownership over what you have bought.

Also there have been several EU cases , lately the one that made Steam change their "TOS" to mention a subscriber based system, but that wont prevent you from still having every right over your purchased game.

#29 Edited by wiouds (5257 posts) -

@Jacanuk said:

@wiouds said:

I feel sorry for PC only gamers since now 92% of all they paid for can be taken away legally by companies.

Actually no they can't, most consumer laws have protections against you losing ownership over what you have bought.

Also there have been several EU cases , lately the one that made Steam change their "TOS" to mention a subscriber based system, but that wont prevent you from still having every right over your purchased game.

Too bad you are not purchasing anything but pay for the right to play the program.

#30 Edited by Rattlesnake_8 (18414 posts) -

The reasons are pretty obvious why it's so high.. example: On console you can buy Metro Redux coming out tomorrow for $49.99. Or if you own the original games you can but them for $12.49 each on steam. Half price. If you wanted the game why would you pay double? Thats on a new release. Then you have daily, weekly, weekend, summer and winter sales which put games up for ridiculously low prices. That and to find physical copies of games is near impossible unless it's a new release, and even then stores seem to only get one or two copies at most.

#31 Posted by Hizang (2808 posts) -
@behardy24 said:

Honestly, I would of expected a higher percentage, something like 97-98%

I agree, 92% seems low considering in most of the video game retailers I visit have no PC section.