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Worldwide digital games market in April 2020

Worldwide digital games market - April 2020

SuperData has released its report on the worldwide digital games market for April 2020. It shows that game spending rose to a new record, $10.5 billion, for the month as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Revenue was higher than it was in March 2020, when many countries went into lockdown, and year-on-year it was up by 17 percent compared to $8.9 billion for April 2019. Earnings year-on-year grew for mobile and PC, by 14 and 12 percent respectively with consoles seeing a more substantial growth of 42 percent.

Animal Crossing: New Horizons sold the most digital units for the month at 3.6 million. The game has become somewhat of a phenomenon thanks in part to the current pandemic. Digital sales were down by 27 percent month-on-month, but it has now become the best-selling game on the Switch in terms of lifetime digital unit sales, as well as lifetime digital revenue. This is all the more impressive considering that the game has only been on the market for two months.

Final Fantasy 7 Remake sold 2.2 million digital units in the month, setting new records for the franchise, as well as PlayStation exclusives. With physical copies proving to be difficult to acquire, most purchases of the game were digital. As a result of this situation, the game’s digital sales have passed those of Marvel’s spider-Man, which was the previous holder of the PlayStation exclusive digital sales record.

Resident Evil 3 Remake sold 1.3 million digital units for the month. This is almost as many as Resident Evil 2 Remake sold at launch, 1.4 million in January 2019. Despite the game being shorter than the last remake, it seems to have performed well, though review scores are slightly lower overall.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Campaign Remastered showed that there’s still a big demand for single player first person shooters, with 3.4 million digital units sold over the month. The game was exclusive to PlayStation 4 in April, so it is expected to perform particularly well over May on PC and Xbox One.

Lockdowns seemed to have caused players to return to older games. League of Legends saw a spending high that hasn’t been seen since February 2017 last month, as well as the highest ever peak for player numbers. Grand Theft Auto 5 saw the highest monthly in-game spending from players for any month ever. It’s expected that the spending will continue in May since the game was made available for free on the Epic Game Store.

Finally, an in-game concert in Fortnite managed to reinvigorate the player base. The event, known as Travis Scott’s Astronomical, saw more players come back to the game and log in for one specific moment. This pushed monthly earnings to be their highest since May 2019. This month the game also saw the debut for the second trailer for Tenet, which may well cause yet another boost in in-game spending.

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