If two people are standing side by side, one of them plays video games, and 14% of the other one plays video games. I’m pretty sure that is what I am supposed to take from the latest study that recently reported it’s findings. A research group called Magid Associates recently surveyed 2540 United States citizens ranging from 8 to 64 years old.  In their survey, they discovered that 64% of them play video games, and even more intriguing is the fact that a majority of them play games on consoles. Young and old are rocking their video games!

A ton of hoopla has been had over the emergence and meteoric rise of mobile gaming. I play on my iPad a ton and my phone a decent amount, probably more than my console, but I am in the minority. The report states:

“The console is still king: Console gaming has more players, money, and time spent than any other platforms.”

Even in this less than ideal economy, it would seem people are still purchasing consoles as well. While retail sales have seen a decline for four straight years, the survey respondents are spending more on console games this year, or at least plan to.

Another interesting tidbit in the study is the rather dismal numbers in regards to those that purchase DLC. Only a third of the surveyed purchased DLC at some point in the past. With DLC becoming such a hot button topic as of late, those numbers seem low, but with casual gamers making up such a huge portion it makes sense.

So how do the newer types of games hold up against their console brothers? 44% of respondents play mobile games once a week, while 37% play social games the same amount. On the other hand, 50% said they play console games at least once a week.

All these numbers can be boring, but I find it fairly interesting to see how far games have come. Growing up in the 80’s, I was in the nerd crowd; not because I was a nerd per se, but because I was a huge video game kid. In the early days, gaming wasn’t cool to talk about at school. In my formative years, it was something that most kids didn’t admit to, instead focusing on sports, music and movies. These days, kids go to school wearing Angry Birds shirts, Mario back packs, and even carry their hand held systems with them when it is allowed. For me, I grew up showing off my yo-yo skills. This may sound like an old man reminiscing about the bad old days, but consider this. That was only about 25 years ago. In the blink of an eye, gaming went from a nerd’s hobby to a full blown phenomenon.

New entertainment mediums always have a rocky start as new styles of the art are released. The gaming industry is seeing growing pains, and has had it’s fair share of knocks in the past, but think about five years from now. We aren’t far from carrying our home consoles in our pockets and sharing saves between devices on the cloud. The industry is still in its infancy, but with such a huge section of the population embracing it, I can see it growing up fast. Gaming is finding a way to change the lives of those that most need it, and I’m happy to know that I’ve been a part of it.