The scale of the UK games market now dwarfs video and music combined, according to the ERA.
It’s no secret that games have been a growing medium. The market for video games has been on the up-and-up for the past several years, but a new report from the Entertainment Retailers Association indicates a fairly strong presence in the United Kingdom. In fact, video games now make up over half of the total entertainment market, beating music and video media in the process.
Physical retail is declining, while digital sales grew 12.5 percent. However, as the report states, “[T]he sheer scale of the games market is such that it was enough to make it bigger than video and music combined.” Mobile gaming and console digital downloads were credited – with titles like Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 and Red Dead Redemption 2 selling over 1 million copies on Xbox One and PS4.
ERA CEO Kim Bayley noted, “The games industry has been incredibly effective in taking advantage of the potential of digital technology to offer new and compelling forms of entertainment. Despite being the youngest of our three sectors, it is now by far the biggest.” Compared to the medium’s market share in 2007, times have indeed changed for games in the UK thanks to the growth of digital media.
How much does this impact games that have seen lower than expected physical sales, like Fallout 76 and Battlefield 5? It’s hard to say without digital download numbers from the respective publishers. The same goes for games-as-a-service titles, which rely purely on digital content and sales to sustain themselves.