Average age of US gamers now 30

E3 2012: ESA research shows more Americans are playing games on smartphones, tablets, and handhelds; consumers spent nearly $25 billion on game content, hardware, and accessories in 2011.

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The Entertainment Software Association released the 2012 Essential Facts About the Computer and Video Game Industry report today, detailing a few facts about the video game habits of American gamers.

According to the report--conducted by Ipsos MediaCT for Essential Facts from more than 2,000 nationally representative households during the spring of 2012--the average game player in America is 30 years old, and 37 percent of game players are older than 36. On the home console front, 49 percent of all American homes now have a video game console, and more than 30 percent of respondents said they play games on a smartphone, compared to 20 percent last year.

"Games have evolved from a thing you buy to an experience enjoyed by a wide and diverse population everywhere, anytime, on any screen," president and CEO of ESA Michael D. Gallagher said in a statement. "The creativity of our developers and publishers produces an ever-expanding variety of games in different formats and across all platforms."

The report also found 33 percent of American gamers now play social games, and 15 percent play online games. Of the parents surveyed, 98 percent found the current ESRB system helpful, and 73 percent said they believe parental controls in video game consoles are useful. Video games also proved popular with families: 40 percent of parents said they play games with their children at least once a week, and 66 percent said such games provide mental stimulation.

According to the report, consumers in America spent nearly $25 billion on game content, hardware, and accessories in 2011.

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