Gaming is one of the most widespread forms of entertainment worldwide. Each year, video game statistics hit new records, with the value of the industry increasing sharply.
Naturally, console, PC, and phone games are consumed the most in developed countries. So, researching video game stats in countries like Canada will provide us with a broader picture as well as the most recent trends.
Today, we’ll focus on video game statistics in Canada. We’ll see how much Canadians spend on average playing video games,] and what their favourites. We’ll also look at the broader societal picture linked to the video game industry.
Let’s dive right in.
Addictive Video Game Stats (Editor’s Choice)
- 64% of Canadians play video games on a fairly regular basis.
- In 2020, around 23 million Canadians played video games.
- 90% of Canadian adolescent males describe themselves as gamers.
- The total revenue of the Canadian video game industry will pass US$1.3 billion in 2021.
- The video gaming industry contributed $3.7 billion to GDP in 2017.
- There are hundreds of thousands of Canadians who make money from video games.
General Video Game Statistics
1. The value of the global video game industry has increased almost fivefold from 2012 to 2021.
Video game statistics for 2021 show that the global market amounts to a mind-blowing US$138 billion. This is a US$7 billion rise when compared with video game statistics from 2020.
In 2012, the value of PC, console, and phone gaming companies was around US$51 billion. Interestingly, growth is steadily linear, with US$7-10 billion being added to the global value each year.
2. Mobile gaming is becoming the biggest contributor to the value of the whole industry.
(Source: Fullsync, Statista)
While hardcore gamers frown upon this phenomenon, mobile games are becoming more and more sophisticated. At the same time, people, especially adolescents, are more and more ready to turn to mobile gaming.
Here’s the thing:
Statistics about video games very clearly show us how smartphone games have gone from obscurity to ultimate widespreadness. As of April 2021, the mobile video game market share was 57%, compared to 47% in 2020. Note that mobile gaming is very flexible, and many people choose to combine it with more traditional forms of gaming.
The COVID-19 pandemic further increased the time people spend on phones and, naturally, mobile video games.
Online gaming is a closely related topic. Numerous improvements in internet speed and stability have brought alongside the infinite potential of online gaming and social linking.
3. People spend around 8.45 hours per week gaming.
(Source: Statista, Digital Commons,Hindawi)
This is the global average for people who play video games. Gamers in China are the most hardcore, with 12.4 hours per week. The Vietnamese are second, with an average of 10.2 hours.
However, these video game statistics only concern players older than 18. So, the stats may be skewed because children and teens play a lot of video games.
The thing is:
Studies have shown that the total time spent on games increases sharply from 6 to 12 years when it levels up. Problem play reaches its peak at the age of 14-18. Children with ADHD may be more prone to engage in problematic video game use.
Video Games in Canada
4. 64% of the Canadian population plaid video games regularly in 2018, video game statistics reveal.
This is a significant increase from 2014, when 54% of Canadians reported playing a video game in the past four weeks. 9.25 million Canadians downloaded at least one game in 2014, compared to 10.5 million in 2020.
The number of Canadian mobile phone gamers increased drastically between 2014 and 2019 – from 15.3 million to 23 million.
Although gaming is traditionally seen as a male hobby, Canada video game demographics show that gender disparities are slowly waning. Since 2012, both genders are proportionally represented in the world of gaming. Still, differences exist in the choice of games, time spent, gaming style, and so on.
As to Canada’s favourite video games:
People mostly choose casual online games, such as puzzle and word games – around 50%. Furthermore, 38% prefer multiplayer online action games, while 37% choose to devote the most time to games like Sims and FarmVille.
5. 90% of Canadian adolescent males describe themselves as gamers.
(Source: ESA Canada)
These are video game usage statistics for 13 to 17-year-old participants. 60% of girls in the same age groups use the same term to describe themselves. It seems like the tendency to use the term gamer to describe oneself decreases with age.
Here’s the deal:
While 82% of 18 to 34-year-old Canadian males consider themselves gamers, this is only true for 45% of males in 55 to 64-year-old men.
The pattern holds true in women, although with a consistently lower tendency to use the word “gamer” in describing oneself.
That being said:
We have to be careful when interpreting these Canadian video game industry stats because seniors were introduced to video games somewhat later in life. This might be the reason for their lower interest in video games.
6. In 2020, around 23 million Canadians played video games.
(Source: SEA Canada)
The average age of a Canadian gamer is 34. However, the distribution of time spent on gaming is not symmetrical. There are a lot of young gamers and not so much older ones, but the older gamers still draw the average forwards.
What this means is that the typical gamer in Canada is much younger than 34. This is obvious when we consider more detailed video game industry statistics. For instance, 89% of Canadian children and adolescents (aged 6 to 17) play video games.
7. Gaming industry statistics from 2020 reveal 58% of adult Canadians played more video games than they did pre-pandemic.
(Source: ESA Canada)
This is even more pronounced in teens, with 80% noticing the same trend in their behaviour. Recent video gaming industry statistics also show that people generally think that gaming helps them follow lock-down rules – 65% of all surveyed adults and 78% of teens.
And that’s not all:
When it comes to online gaming statistics, 36% of adults report streaming more content since the COVID-19 pandemic started, with 50% of teens reporting the same trend.
Interestingly enough, games are possibly bringing parents and children together!
Check this out:
69% of parents with children aged 6 to 12 say they play video games with their children, as do 60% of parents with children aged 13 to 17. Given the fact that games are often attacked for widening the gap between kids and parents, these survey results come as a reminder that there’s never one side to the story.
Video Game Industry Statistics Canada
8. Canada’s video game industry revenue will surpass the US$1 billion mark in 2021.
More specifically, the revenue of the gaming industry in Canada will reach a massive US$1.306 billion by the end of 2021. Needless to say, mobile games are the biggest contributor by far, with US$643 million in revenue, video game sales statistics reveal.
There’s good news:
The average revenue per user is expected to rise.
The average Canadian gamer spends US$ 62.47 per year on video games. Click To Tweet
The gaming industry in Canada is expected to grow by 11.8% in 2021. This means that Canadians will spend more and more money on games – especially on microtransactions for smartphone video games.
9. Canada’s video game industry is one of the largest in the world when we look at the number of people employed in this sector.
According to statistics on video gamers, Canada comes only after Japan and the US, traditionally the biggest gaming countries in the world.
Check this out:
As of 2017, there were 21,700 people directly involved in the Canadian gaming industry. We have to emphasize the word “directly” because there are many more people who make their living in the world of gaming but are not producing video games.
According to Canada’s Gaming Association, when we include all people who make money out of video games, the number of Canadians employed in the video games industry rises to 267,000.
10. The economic contribution of video games in Canada is much greater than the raw revenues.
Video games sale stats and data on video game trade value in Canada are not the only essential stats for grasping the economic impact of gaming. In 2015, video games in Canada added an impressive $3 billion to Canada’s GDP. This contribution gets larger each year – in 2017, it amounted to $3.7 billion.
11. Video game companies in Ontario are among the most productive in Canada.
There are more than 100 game companies in Ontario, with more than 2,500 full-time employees. Ontario’s video game industry is worth more than $265 million.
Although video game companies in Vancouver are very well-off, with 5,500 full-time employees, they’re trailing the Montreal video game industry. This is thanks to the massive Ubisoft Montreal studio, one of the largest in the world.
In fact, Quebeck has more than 130 games companies, employing more than 10,000 full-time employees.
Video game jobs in Canada are rather lucrative:
Developers earn $70,000 per year on average, although this varies across regions. Developers in British Columbia earn the most – around $80,000.
12. Canada is home to numerous world-class game development studios.
(Source: Ubisoft,Windows Central)
There are hundreds of video game companies in Canada. BioWare, the studio responsible for such hits as Mass Effect, Dragon Age, and Star Wars: The Old Republic, has its headquarters in Edmonton.
Electronic Arts has two big centres in Vancouver and Montreal. Montreal is the Canadian gaming business Mecca, with the likes of EA, Eidos, and Ubisoft all having their biggest and best studios there.
And that’s not all:
There are many independent small Canadian game studios like, for instance, Smoking Gun Interactive, Incubator Games, and Cypabara Games, to mention only a few. Independent Canadian video game companies are as important as the large ones as they bring innovation and out-of-the-box thinking.
13. Fortnite is probably the most played video game in Canada.
(Source: Canyon News)
We say “probably” because it’s very hard to track gaming trends in specific countries. Fortnite is, first of all, played by 350 million people worldwide, more than 51 million in North America.
We also know that children, teens, and adolescents are the biggest Fortnite fans.
Canadians are also big WOW fans. Some years ago, there were three million regular WOW players in North America.
Video Game Addiction Statistics
14. Video game addiction is still a loose term and currently not in the main categorization of mental disorders.
The concept of video game addiction is quite recent, and we need more studies to understand it properly, including in the Canadian context. The American Psychiatric Association, while recognizing the need to further research gaming addiction, still doesn’t fully recognize the disorder.
The World Health Organization and its International Classification of Diseases (ICD) recognize video game addiction as a real disorder. However, its widespread use will only start in 2022. The WHO definition of the disorder includes:
- Lack of control over gaming
- Giving priority to gaming over important activities (e.g., life interests)
- Continuous gaming despite the negative consequences
15. Video game statistics estimate the percentage of problematic gaming from 6% to 11%.
In other words, around one-tenth of Canadian gamers may be facing problems with their video game use. As of recently, we see a lot of new institutes and centres, like the Toronto Video Game Addiction Treatment Center or Venture Academy.
Canada is a nation that gladly accepts new gaming trends, including in esports, and indeed shows the way forward for the global community with its numerous development studios.
The Great White North has a very strong effect on the global video game industry, especially in terms of investment, the number of employees, and revenue.