Countries with the biggest online gaming industries in 2020
Among many industries today, nothing compares to the undeniable rise of online gaming in the digital world. Its massive audience base and unparalleled revenue growth challenge other forms of entertainment. In 2019, it was worth US$152 billion, and statistics projected it to increase to US$196 billion by 2022.
A lot of factors contribute to its unstoppable success. There are game developers, distributors, streaming services, and more. On that note, this leads us to the more important matter, where do these institutions come from?
Top 6 countries by revenue
The featured countries below are based on Newzoo’s 2020 report. It is the world’s most reliable and quoted source for the gaming sector’s trends and analytics.
- China | US$44,263 million
From politics and culture to entertainment, China seems to have taken several social aspects by storm. While its special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau are largely and normally viewed as gambling havens (e.g. slots casino and high roller tables), its mainland is home to some of the world’s largest video game companies and most number of video gamers. In turn, it has been described as the ‘Games Industry Capital of the World’.
After the national government officially lifted the ban on video game consoles in 2015, its market has grown exponentially, notably in PC, browser and mobile games. Now, it’s led by conglomerates like Tencent Holdings, Perfect World, NetEase, and Shanda. Along with South Korea, it’s a leader in conducting global eSports tournaments and producing talented players.
- United States | US$42,107 million
Like China, the U.S. is another gambling destination and a leader in PC, mobile, and console games. Recent trends reported that about 53.1% of its population are digital gamers, and a quarter of that is monthly viewers of eSports tournaments.
As for its developers and producers, however, many of the market’s best-selling online video games and top gaming companies are subsidiaries or expansions from Japan (e.g. Sony and Nintendo). Another figure at the top of the list is the leading American global tech company responsible for the best browsers, operating systems, and video game consoles: Microsoft Corporation.
- Japan | US$20,615 million
Japan may come after the U.S. in revenues, but let’s face it, gaming is totally a different beast in this country. It has always been an innovative leader in technology — a particular reason why gaming is more than just an entertainment. Instead, it’s a transcending culture that doesn’t have national borders, which explains why most of its games appeal globally and why, as said before, have extended companies in other countries.
Its big five game conglomerates are Nintendo, Square Enix, Sega Sammy, Bandai Namco, and Konami. Of all these names, Square Enix is the biggest and closest to online gaming because it is responsible for some of the world’s longest-running action-role playing games like Final Fantasy, Kingdom Hearts, and Dragon Quest.
- South Korea | US$7,325 million
South Korea has a competitive gaming market, more so when it’s globally known for kickstarting the spectacle of eSports. While only a portion of the vast online gaming sector, it has reached a billion-dollar market. The country’s well-known online games are Gravity’s Ragnarok Online and NC Soft’s Lineage series.
- Germany | US$6,084 million
Home to more than 45 million active gamers, Germany is today’s largest video game market in Europe. Russia preceded it in 2018. What’s even more interesting to note is that the gaming sector came to this country, not the other way around.
Owing to its supporting government, brilliant workforce, and state-of-the-art IT infrastructure, it continues to attract global gaming companies. Today, it’s led by Bigpoint Games, Deep Silver, and DTP Entertainment, to name a few.
- United Kingdom | US$5,533 million
After China and the U.S., the U.K. has one of the most progressive gambling regulations in slots casino control and sports betting. It shouldn’t become any different why it’s also a major