U.S. Consumer Video Game Spending Totaled $60.4 Billion in 2021

/PRNewswire/ — Overall total consumer spending on video games in the U.S. totaled $60.4 billion in 2021, an 8 percent increase over 2020, according to new data released today by the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) and The NPD Group. This figure includes revenues from all content categories (including full-game, post-launch and subscription spending across console, cloud, mobile*, portable, PC and VR platforms), hardware and accessories.

“The growth and impact of the video game industry over the past year underscores the sustained trends we have seen for several years, namely that people of all ages and demographics are playing video games for joy and competition, connecting with others, learning and mental stimulation, as well as much needed stress relief,” ESA President and CEO Stanley Pierre-Louis said. “The video game industry drives a dynamic and growing entertainment ecosystem that not only provides engaging interactive content, but also spurs local economic growth through live esports competitions, educational opportunities and high-wage careers.”

Gains were seen across console and PC subscription spending, digital post-launch content spending across console, PC and VR, as well as hardware and accessories. Overall, content spending in 2021 reached $51.7 billion, an increase of 7 percent over 2020. Hardware rose to $6.1 billion, a 14 percent increase. Accessories generated $2.7 billion in consumer spending, a 2 percent increase.

“The video game industry continued to thrive in 2021, energized by new platforms and content joining some existing consumer favorites. Due to strong demand, PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series consoles remained hard to find throughout each platform’s first full year in market, while existing platforms such as Nintendo Switch, PC and Quest 2 delivered strong sales and engagement,” NPD games industry analyst Mat Piscatella said. “Video game players enjoyed a wide range of options in the variety of games to enjoy, platforms to play them on, and ways to engage with them. Sales gains were seen across several segments, from hardware to accessories, and from subscription services to digital post-launch recurrent spending.”

Mobile data provided by Sensor Tower showed U.S. consumer spending in mobile games increased 14 percent from 2020.

“U.S. mobile games spending maintained its pandemic-boosted momentum from 2020 through 2021, with December capping off a stellar year for the U.S. mobile game market as the third largest month for spending in the past three years and the best December on record. All of this despite headwinds, including a clampdown on attribution data many feared would disrupt the very underpinnings of the industry,” Sensor Tower Head of Insights Randy Nelson said. “The outlook for 2022 sees a continuation of this growth velocity, on a wave of emerging trends that are growing the overall player base, such as console cross-play and high-spec mobile reimaginings of popular console franchises.”

Top Games in the U.S.  in 2021
PC/Console (full-game sales only) – Best SellersMobile – Top Grossing
RankTitleRankTitle
1Call of Duty: Vanguard1Candy Crush Saga
2Call of Duty: Black Ops: Cold War2Roblox
3Madden NFL 223Coin Master
4Pokémon: Brilliant Diamond/Shining Pearl†4Garena Free Fire
5Battlefield 20425Pokémon GO
6Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales6Genshin Impact
7Mario Kart 8†7Homescapes
8Resident Evil: Village8Lords Mobile: Tower Defense
9MLB: The Show 21^9Call of Duty: Mobile
10Super Mario 3D World†10Clash of Clans
11Far Cry 611Candy Crush Soda Saga
12FIFA 2212State of Survival
13Minecraft13Bingo Blitz
14Animal Crossing: New Horizons†14PUBG Mobile
15NBA 2K22†15Gardenscapes
16Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla16RAID: Shadow Legends
17Super Smash Bros. Ultimate†17Project Makeover
18Back 4 Blood18Slotomania
19Mortal Kombat 1119Jackpot Party
20Forza Horizon 520Fishdom

*Mobile spending provided by Sensor Tower
Digital sales not included
^Xbox Digital sales not included

Source: Entertainment Software Association / PRNewsWire

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