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DFC Intelligence has claimed that PC gamers spent more on their hardware and software in 2013 than in 2012, leading to the belief that the PC is catching up with its console brethren.
In an extract from an upcoming brief published on GamesIndustry the DFC Intelligence group, has explained that PC gamer spending increased year-over-year in 2013 and the analyst firm also expects this trend to continue in 2014, and is forecasting spend of $25 billion.
DFC’s Jeremy Miller said. “Core gamers seem to be willing to spend more money than ever, we thought with the lack of major new releases that overall usage would be down. However, the top titles of 2012 continued to do well in 2013 and new titles like Battlefield 4 and Total War: Rome 2 had solid performances.”
League of Legends was the top PC title of 2013 and even though being a free to play game has a huge amour of pay for content to add to your experience in the game. This was closely followed by Dota 2 which was itself the fastest-growing PC game of the year even with the beta only appearing at the start of 2013. MOBA is “far and away the largest [genre] because of those two games”, DFC said.
Although free-to-play games are a major contributor to total PC spend, DFC noted that upfront payments are also gaining and are surpassingly strong.
“Dota 2 charged a $30 beta fee before going free-to-play and a great deal of people took advantage of that. So really we see a hybrid business model working where you can call it F2P but still charge upfront. Also the traditional model where you charge a one-time fee is also very attractive – but again there is now a greater ability to upsell consumers after the initial purchase. We think this is a major driver of growth versus the pure free-to-play games.”
DFC also believes PC spend will continue to rise, not in spite of next-gen consoles, but partially because of them; there is an increasing overlap between PC and console gamers, especially with major games like Titanfall and The Elder Scrolls Online developed for both platforms simultaneously.
“2013 was a slow year for releases on the PC in large part because developers were gearing up for new console systems. We actually think the launch of the new console systems will help lift the PC game business because there is large overlap between console and PC gamers and it becomes another platform for developers,” Cole said.
With the growing popularity of let’s plays on YouTube and the huge live market brought on by the streaming community Twitch, it is not surprising that PC gaming is on the rise and with the soon to be realized Diablo update and a new World of Warcraft expansion possibly dropping this year I’m pretty sure that the market will continue to rise. A lot of people see PC gaming as the way gaming should be played and although the investment is far heavier than that of the consoles, I agree that the experience is far superior.