Teen and Tween Gaming - US - June 2017


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Mintel

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An overwhelming majority of teens and tweens aged 10-17 have played video games in the last three months. A majority of them are not beholden to any one gaming device or genre of video game. While girls are significantly more likely to enjoy games typically found on mobile devices, boys tend to be engaged in aspects of gaming that require more of an investment. Perceptions of gaming popularity and socialization tend to decrease with age, and younger teen boys appear to be the most dedicated to gaming.

Table of Content

OVERVIEW
What you need to know
Definition

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
The issues
New generation of consoles lack spark
Figure 1: Video game consoles owned or played, October 2015-November 2016
Saving may be a priority for teens
Figure 2: Male younger teens’ spend on video games and electronics, January 2007-November 2016
Interest cools with age
Figure 3: Teen and tween gaming attitudes – Select items, by age and gender, February 2017
The opportunities
Screen-centric lifestyles breed avid gamers
Figure 4: Must-have video game features for teens and tweens, February 2017
The gender divide
Figure 5: Teen and tween video game genres played, by gender, February 2017
The meteoric rise of eSports
Blurring the lines between mobile and console gaming
Figure 6: Teen and tween devices used to play video games – Nets, February 2017
Capitalizing on demonstrations
Figure 7: Teen and tween promotional considerations, February 2017
What it means

THE MARKET – WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Gaming console sales cyclical
Teen gaming expectations shifting
Paying for games

THE GAMING CONSOLES MARKET
Console sales down but not out
Figure 8: Total US unit sales of gaming consoles, 2011-16
Previous generation consoles have higher ownership
Figure 9: Video game consoles owned or played by teens, October 2015-November 2016

MARKET PERSPECTIVE
Screen-centric activities common
Mobile app usage more common among teen girls
Immediate content seen as a basic right for the iGeneration
Smartphone, laptop, tablet ownership up

MARKET FACTORS
Male population higher in younger age groups
Figure 10: Number and ratio of males to females, by age, 2017
Figure 11: Teen enjoyment of video games, by gender, October 2015-November 2016
Some teens working
Figure 12: Teen income, October 2015-November 2016
Savings-conscious teens may not spend as much
Figure 13: Male teen spend on video games and electronics, January 2007-November 2016
Investments in mobile network infrastructure

KEY PLAYERS – WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Gaming developers target teens and tweens
Teens want their voices heard
Struggling to maintain engagement
The new way to game

SPOTLIGHT ON GAMING DEVELOPERS
Rovio Entertainment Ltd.
Rockstar Games, Inc.
Nintendo Co., Ltd.
Valve Corporation
Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.

WHAT’S WORKING?
Beta testing allows teens to give opinions
Teens want content now
Mobile gaming popular
Corporate partnerships boost technical innovation
Creating friendships online

WHAT’S STRUGGLING?
Negative, aggressive pockets of competitive gamers
Keeping content relevant
New consoles struggle for price-conscious populace

WHAT’S NEXT?
eSports: the future of video game consumption
Rapidly-growing fanbase
Top gamers entering stardom
Scholarships for eSports
The Amazon effect
Blending mobile and console with Nintendo Switch
Figure 14: First Look at Nintendo Switch video, October 2016
Virtual reality living up to the hype
Subscription gaming services
Gaming in the cloud

THE CONSUMER – WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Mobile and dedicated gaming fairly even
Stark gender divides in preferred video game genres
Solo play a major draw
Willing to invest in new products
Word of mouth is a powerful tool
Taking solace in gaming
Fun trumps performance

DEVICES USED TO PLAY VIDEO GAMES
Mobile and dedicated console gaming fairly even
Figure 15: Teen and tween devices used to play video games, February 2017
Most teens and tweens game on multiple devices
Figure 16: Teen and tween devices used to play video games – Number of devices, February 2017
Not entirely a boys club
Figure 17: Teen and tween devices used to play video games – Nets, by gender, February 2017
Older teens less likely to game
Figure 18: Teen and tween devices used to play video games – Nets, by age, February 2017
Urban teens and tweens game more
Figure 19: Teen and tween devices used to play video games, by area, February 2017
Gaming consoles popular among Hispanics
Figure 20: Teen and tween devices used to play video games, by Hispanic origin, February 2017

TYPES OF VIDEO GAMES PLAYED
Diversity of genres illustrates complex gaming landscape
Teens and tweens gravitate toward action
Mobile puzzle games enjoyed by many
The power of Minecraft
Figure 21: Teen and tween video game genres played, February 2017
Stark gender divide in gaming preferences
Figure 22: Teen and tween video game genres played, by gender, February 2017
Age restrictions change gaming preferences
Figure 23: Teen and tween video game genres played – Select items, by gender and age, February 2017
Avid gamers more interested in any genre
Figure 24: Teen and tween video game genres played, by number of devices played, February 2017

VIDEO GAME FEATURES
Asserting independence through gameplay
Figure 25: Must-have video game features for teens and tweens, February 2017
Teen and tween boy gamers seeking challenging, engaging gameplay
Figure 26: Must-have video game features for teens and tweens – Select items, by gender and age, February 2017
Hispanic teens expect more from gaming
Figure 27: Must-have video game features for teens and tweens – Select items, by Hispanic origin, February 2017

VIDEO GAME PURCHASES
New, not cheap
Figure 28: Teen and tween video game purchases, February 2017
Older teen boys less likely to invest in gaming
Figure 29: Boys’ video game purchases – Select items, by age, February 2017
Avid gamers more likely to enhance gaming
Figure 30: Teen and tween video game purchases – Select items, by number of devices played, February 2017
Later purchases more likely for new games
Figure 31: When teens purchase new games, by all vs boys by age, October 2015-November 2016

TEEN AND TWEEN PROMOTIONAL CONSIDERATIONS
Family and friends play influential roles
Figure 32: Teen and tween promotional considerations, February 2017
Tween boys want to know what they’re getting into
Figure 33: Teen and tween boys promotional considerations, by age, February 2017

TEEN AND TWEEN GAMING BEHAVIORS
Gaming mostly solitary
Figure 34: Teen and tween gaming behaviors, February 2017
Girls tend to mobile game
Figure 35: Teen and tween gaming behaviors – Select items, by gender, February 2017
Social gaming diminishes with age
Figure 36: Teen and tween social gaming behaviors, by age, February 2017

TEEN AND TWEEN ATTITUDES TOWARD GAMING
Enjoyment over skill
Figure 37: Teen and tween gaming attitudes, February 2017
Younger teens and tween boys most engaged with gaming innovations
Figure 38: Teen and tween gaming attitudes – Select items, by age and gender, February 2017
Video games more important than TV to young men
Figure 39: Male attitudes toward video games, October 2015-November 2016

APPENDIX – DATA SOURCES AND ABBREVIATIONS
Data sources
Sales data
Consumer survey data
Abbreviations and terms
Abbreviations
Terms

APPENDIX – THE MARKET
Figure 40: Young male teen spend on video games and technology, January 2007-November 2016
Figure 41: Teen debit and credit card ownership, and type of bank account, October 2015-November 2016

APPENDIX – KEY PLAYERS
Figure 42: Teens’ interest in video game rentals, January 2007-November 2016

APPENDIX – THE CONSUMER
Figure 43: What teens aged 12-17 spend their money on – Trended, October 2007-November 2016
Figure 44: What teen boys aged 12-14 spend their money on – Trended, October 2007-November 2016
Figure 45: What teens aged 12-17 spend their money on, by gender and age, October 2015-November 2016
Figure 46: When teen gamers usually buy new games, by gender and age, October 2015-November 2016
Figure 47: Teens’ aged 12-17 attitudes toward money – Trended, October 2007-November 2016
Figure 48: Teens’ aged 12-17 attitudes toward money, by gender and age, October 2015-November 2016

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