ESA Report: Women Comprise Nearly Half of Gamer Population

The Entertainment Software Association released its report, "2013 Essential Facts About the Computer and Video Game Industry" on the official opening day of the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles. The ESA represents the video games industry, operates the E3 Expo trade show, and owns the ESRB, in case you didn't know.

According to the freshly released report, adult women represent a significant percentage of the video game-playing population than boys age 17 or younger. Nearly half of all video game players are women, according to the report. Women make up 31 percent of the video game-playing population, while boys 17 and under represent only 19 percent of game players. Women are 45 percent of the entire game playing population and 46 percent of the time are the most frequent game purchasers.

"This new data underscores the remarkable upward trajectory for video games. It is an entertainment form enjoyed by hundreds of millions of consumers worldwide," said Michael D. Gallagher, president and CEO of ESA, the trade association that represents the U.S. video game industry. "A diverse and energized consumer base, remarkable new hardware, and outstanding software all combine to foster growth for our industry."

The report also shows that parents are closely monitoring what their children are playing. According to Essential Facts, parents are present when games are purchased or rented 89 percent of the time, and children receive their parents' permission before purchasing or renting a game 80 percent of the time. More than a third of parents report playing video games with their children at least once a week. Nearly 90 percent of parents said the ESRB rating system is either very or somewhat helpful in choosing games for their children, and 86 percent said parental controls available on all video game consoles are useful – up from 73 percent in 2012.

Some other notable data: 58 percent of Americans play video games; 51 percent of U.S. households own a dedicated game console, with an average of two games owned; the average game player is 30 years old, with 36 percent of game players 36 or older; 43 percent of game players believe that computer and video games give them the most value for their money, compared to other forms of entertainment; 62 percent of gamers play games with others in-person or online; and consumers spent nearly $21 billion on game content, hardware, and accessories in 2012.

You can read the full report here.

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