60% Of All Playtime In 2023 Went Mostly To Older Games Like Fortnite or GTA 5

Estimated read time 3 min read
60% Of All Playtime In 2023 Went Mostly To Older Games Like Fortnite or GTA 5

The gaming industry and the player base have been increasing every single day. Every other day a new title is released, be it a large one or a small-scale game, and with this the industry has been flourishing significantly. But now a new industry report sheds light on the increasing dominance of a select few older video games over players’ annual playtime.

60% Of All Playtime In 2023 Went Mostly To Older Games Like Fortnite or GTA 5

According to a newly published report by market researcher Newzoo, the PC and console market witnessed a 2.6 percent growth in 2023. Despite this growth, overall playtime saw a decline as players immersed themselves more and more in an increasing number of older titles such as League of Legends and Fortnite. This trend highlights how players are spending more time in live service games and already-established franchises, theoretically making it tougher for new games to gain an audience, even though developers continue to be profitable.

Released on April 2, Newzoo’s second annual game industry report offers a comprehensive overview of gaming trends in 2023, including data on player preferences and spending habits. The market for PC and console games expanded and brought in $93.5 billion in revenue in 2023, according to research from Newzoo. While that might appear to be excellent news, further examination of the data reveals that only a select group of publishers and developers have benefited from it.

GTA 5, GTA 5 Source Code, GTA 5 Source Code was Sold at a mere $2,000 Price

Notably, the report highlights that only 20% of gamers’ total playtime in 2023 was spent on games outside of a specific list of 66 titles mentioned in the report. Furthermore, games that are six years old or older accounted for sixty percent of that playtime. Five older games—Fortnite, Roblox, League of Legends, Minecraft, and Grand Theft Auto V—actually accounted for 27% of all playtime during the year.

The situation becomes more concerning when considering that over 23% of playtime in 2023 was allocated to new games, defined as titles released within the past two years. However, more than half of this time was spent on major annual releases like the latest Madden or NBA games. Just 8% of video game playtime was devoted to brand-new, non-annual games like Baldur’s Gate III and Diablo IV.

According to Newzoo’s research, classic, well-known games dominate the top 10 lists for each platform. Across all platforms, including PC and Switch, Fortnite emerged victorious. And you won’t be surprised by the games on the remaining lists, which included Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto V, Roblox, Minecraft, Rocket League, Apex Legends, Fall Guys, and Valorant. Notably, single-player games struggled to break into the top ten, with Starfield being the only exception across Xbox and Playstation consoles.

Fortnite, Most-Played PlayStation Game of 2023, Fortnite takes the Top Spot of the Most-Played PlayStation Game of 2023

The truth is that players are spending more and more time in well-known franchises and live-service games and less time in brand-new games, which makes it more difficult for publishers and developers to find an audience, even though Newzoo’s report acknowledges that success is still possible in this environment. This situation is because, unlike decades ago, you are now up against massive players like Fortnite and Roblox, who offer totally free games with a ton of user-generated content, rather than just the newest, greatest game on the shelf.

The report says, “It will be increasingly challenging to grow a game’s playerbase, particularly in our current landscape, where evergreen titles and robust content pipelines reign supreme.”

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