Only 36% of PC gamers buy games at full price according to initial findings from a study from blockchain-powered PC gaming hub, Ultra. The remaining roughly two-thirds of purchases are evenly split between free-to-play and discounted titles.
The Ultra PC Gamer Study further highlights how price aware consumers are. Three out of four respondents said triple-A games are too expensive. Additionally, 87% said discounts were important in their purchasing decisions.
However, gamers are making up for these discounts in other ways. Reflecting shifting business models across PC Games, 68% of respondents reported buying in-game content such as battle passes.
“These findings show a PC gaming market that’s currently shaped by gamers’ price sensitivity, with players having to make careful purchasing decisions this holiday season,” said Nicolas Gilot, Co-CEO at Ultra. “This offers invaluable insight for developers, publishers, and platforms and shows the scale of the opportunity for indie games and challenger storefronts even in the mature, prosumer PC gaming market which has been growing and evolving for decades.”
Opportunities for indie games
With consumers turned off by the price of triple-A games, there’s a major opportunity for indie games. Ultra’s PC games study suggests that players are open to indie alternatives, with 75% saying they buy digital indie titles.
About one third of indie game buyer said their purchases were due to their lower price points. However, creativity (40%) and wanting to try something new (39%) were the top two reasons.
While gamers are open to trying something new with the titles they play, they are less aware of alternative storefronts. Unsurprisingly, gamers were most familiar with Stream and Epic Games Store. Fewer than 20% of gamers were familiar with alternatives such as GamesPlanet, GOG and Humble Store.
The Ultra PC Gamer Study surveyed 2,000 gamers in the U.S. and U.K. aged 18 to 44. All respondents played PC games at least once per week, but half played daily. The full report from Ultra is expected in January 2024.
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