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November 2, 2010

Canadian gamers becoming increasingly social

39% playing more social games

The Entertainment Software Association of Canada  (ESAC) has released its annual Essential Facts, a snapshot of the Canadian computer and video game industry. The 2010 Essential Facts reveals that 39% of gamers (defined as someone who has played video games in the past four weeks) are spending more time playing games accessible through social networking websites.

Also of note is the fact that seve percent of gamers use a mobile device (such as a cell phone or smart phone) most often to play video games – almost twice as many as in 2009 (4%). Gamers are also connecting their games with others through the internet with 76% reporting online play.

"Social games are a growing part of the Canadian gamer's repertoire - especially for women and teen girls – but they are only one of the many types of games that Canadians enjoy," says   Danielle Parr, Executive Director of ESAC. "While we're seeing a shift in how Canadians are playing games particularly towards online games, console and computer games remain the principal way to play," she adds. 

Social games are mostly free, widely available and accessible through social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace. These games – including popular ones like Farmville, Mafia Wars and Cafe World – are quick to load, take only a few minutes to play and grow virally as users invite their contacts to join in. Research found that 35% of adult women and 37% of teen girls play social games. 26% of girls (6-12yo) play social games, with 38% report spending more time playing these types of games.

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