The turnover of another gaming market has updated the historical maximum. This time we are talking about Italy. Last year, local gamers spent over €2 billion on games for the first time. That’s just the number of Italians playing games has decreased slightly — to 16.7 million people (in 2019 there were 17 million of them).

A detailed report was prepared by the trade organization IIDEA, based on data from GSD, GameTrack and App Annie.

Sources of income

  • in total, in 2020, Italians’ spending on video games increased by 21.9% compared to 2019 and amounted to €2.18 billion;
  • gamers spent the most money on the games themselves and other software. This market share alone accounted for €1.78 billion (82% of total turnover). It should be noted that the growth in annual terms amounted to 24.8%;
  • the most popular were digital versions of titles for consoles and PCs — they brought € 799 million. This is 32.7% more than it was in 2019;
  • but the biggest growth among games was shown by mobile applications, in which Italians left €701 million — 33.5% in annual terms;
  • but sales of physical copies of games fell by 6% compared to 2019 to €284 million.;
  • the second important source of income in addition to games for Italy was the sale of equipment. They accounted for about €395 million (an increase of 10.3%). Moreover, the lion’s share of this amount was generated by console sales — €275 million. Accessories and hybrid devices were responsible for the remaining €120 million;
  • note that in total 884.1 thousand consoles were sold in Italy last year. This is 66.7 thousand less than it was in 2019. More than half of the consoles sold are new generation consoles. 518.8 thousand of them were sold . But it is important to note that IIDEA also included Nintendo Switch indicators in the next generation sales statistics. At the same time, pastgen consoles were not so popular among local gamers — they bought 300.6 thousand copies of PS4, Xbox One and Wii.

Lecture hall

  • despite the fact that the number of Italian gamers decreased to 16.7 million, the audience itself “remained largely unchanged.” Anyway, in 2020, 38% of Italian residents aged 6-64 years played games. In 2019, there were only 1% more of them;
  • mostly in Italy, men are fond of video games. There are 9.4 million of them compared to 7.3 million female gamers;
  • the most playing audience in the country is young people aged 15-24 years (4 million people). Next are gamers aged 45-64 years (3.8 million people), 25-34 years (3 million people), 35-44 years (2.4 million people), 6-10 years (1.8 million people) and 11-14 years (1.7 million people);
  • most Italians prefer to play on smartphones. Last year, 10.7 million people did it — 5.4 million men and 5.3 million women. A significant part of them used Android devices — 8.5 million people;
  • There are also 7.2 million PC gamers living in Italy. Of these, 4.5 million people are men, and 2.7 million people are women;
  • 6.7 million gamers play on consoles in the country. As in the case of PCs, most of them are men (4.2 million people). In 2020, more than half of Italy’s console users used PS4 and Xbox One (4.2 million people). Also, a lot of Italians chose portable consoles like 3DS (1.9 million people). Another 1.7 million gamers played on the Switch, and 1.6 million used the PS3 and Xbox 360.

Time in games

  • in 2020, the Italians played more often. On average, they spent eight hours a week playing games, which is half an hour longer than a year earlier. Moreover, during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, Italian residents played even more — eight and a half hours a week. But in the second half of the year, local gamers have less time for games;
  • console owners played most often — they spent 6.9 hours a week on it. Moreover, users of PS4 consoles were in the lead here, who played an average of 6.3 hours a week. The second place went to the owners of the Switch — 4.7 hours. Xbox Series X|S owners spent a little less time playing games — 4.2 hours. But gamers who used the PS5 played for only 3.3 hours. The least active were gamers with portable consoles like 3DS — 1.7 hours;
  • mobile games took an average of five hours a week from Italians last year, while PC titles took 4.7 hours.

Top 20 best-selling games on the Italian market in 2020*1. FIFA 21 (Electronic Arts)

  • 2. Grand Theft Auto V (Rockstar Games)
  • 3. FIFA 20 (Electronic Arts)
  • 4. Animal Crossing: New Horizons (Nintendo)
  • 5. The Last of Us Part II (Sony Interactive Entertainment)
  • 6. Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War (Activision Blizzard)
  • 7. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare (Activision Blizzard)
  • 8. Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege (Ubisoft)
  • 9. NBA 2K20 (2K Sports)
  • 10. Assassin’s Creed Valhalla (Ubisoft)
  • 11. Red Dead Redemption 2 (Rockstar Games)
  • 12. Minecraft: Nintendo Switch Edition (Mojang)
  • 13. Marvel’s Spider-Man (Sony Interactive Entertainment)
  • 14. Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot (Bandai Namco)
  • 15. God of War (Sony Interactive Entertainment)
  • 16. Assassin’s Creed Odyssey (Ubisoft)
  • 17. Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales (Sony Interactive Entertainment)
  • 18. Ghost of Tsushima (Sony Interactive Entertainment)
  • 19. Gran Turismo Sport (Sony Interactive Entertainment)
  • 20. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe (Nintendo)

*By the number of digital and physical copies sold. Analysts took into account data on the sale of “figures” from Steam, Xbox Live, PlayStation Network, Nintendo Eshop. The data was also shared by such gaming companies as Activision Blizzard, Anuman, Bandai Namco, Capcom, Electronic Arts, Focus Home Interactive, Koch Media, Konami, Microsoft, Milestone, Nacon, Paradox Interactive, Sega, Sony, Square Enix, Take-Two, THQ Nordic, Ubisoft and Warner Bros. The rest of the data is estimated.