A new study conducted by Ultra PC Gamer reveals that the majority of PC gamers acquire games at discounted prices or even for free, while many also have difficulty discovering new games to play. The findings indicate consumer behavior leaning towards sales and indie titles rather than premium-priced AAA games.
Pricing and Discovery Challenges
The study found that 64% of digital PC games are bought at a discount or obtained for free in some manner. Additionally, 36% of gamers surveyed said they struggle to discover new PC game titles on their own. This suggests a market environment where game prices may be too high and discoverability remains a persistent challenge.
Preferences Towards Discounts and Indie Games
Preferences towards discounts and indie originality are apparent in the data. A significant 87% of survey respondents said sale prices and discounts are important factors in their buying decisions when it comes to PC games.
Regarding indie games, 75% said they tend to purchase these titles based on creativity, novelty, lower prices, and to support smaller-scale developers.
Opinions on Pricing
In terms of pricing opinions, 75% of gamers surveyed believe prices for AAA franchise games are overly expensive. This aligns with the preference for discounts and cheaper indie experiences.
Awareness of Game Stores While digital storefronts like Steam and the Epic Games Store enjoy strong brand recognition, the study finds awareness of many other PC gaming sites is still lagging. Alternatives such as GOG, Humble Store, GamesPlanet, CDKeys and G2A were substantially less known among the gamer audience.
Game Discovery Sources
YouTube topped the list for discovery of new games to play, followed by word of mouth, Steam promotions, and Twitch. In contrast, crowdfunding platform Kickstarter had minimal impact for game discovery.
Despite the rise of influencers and streamers, customer reviews and personal recommendations remain the most influential sources impacting purchase decisions.
Full Study Details and Methodology
The initial findings published are from Ultra’s forthcoming 2023 PC Gamer Study which will be released in full this January. Ultra aims to evolve PC gaming distribution with an ecosystem incorporating a vast catalogue of games as well as groundbreaking functionality like game reselling and competitive gaming platforms.
The survey was conducted by Atomik Research and based on responses from 2,003 PC gamers in the US and UK, over the period of October 13-16, 2023