An ISFE-commissioned Ipsos MORI report has highlighted a number of benefits video games have demonstrated during the lockdown. The report, which carried out during Q1 and Q2 to look at video game player behaviour during the pandemic, shows that video games have been an important support for players’ mental health as well as for parents educating their children.
The report shows to an unexpected benefit video games have played while schools were closed during lockdown. Of those surveyed, around 1 in 5 parents agree that video games have helped with their child’s education and schooling in lockdown. Parents also reported that they played games with their children more during lockdown, with 1 in 5 saying they are playing more video games with their children during lockdown, as well as educational games.
Predictably, the government’s stay at home measures have resulted in an uptick in the amount of time spent playing games. Playtime increased weekly by 1.5 hours, compared to the same period in 2019 among players aged 6-64 years old. However, this time decreased to pre-lockdown levels as lockdown eased. Additionally, during this time, 14 per cent of those surveyed reported that they had discovered new games during the lockdown. Despite these increased play times, only 6 per cent of players claim to have increased spend on video game play during lockdown
Games seem to have had a benefit on players’ mental health during this challenging time. 30 per cent of players say video games have helped them feel happier, less anxious and less isolated during lockdown. Also 29 per cent of players claim that video games had a positive impact on their mental health during lockdown, especially those who play multiplayer games.
“This report reflects the huge efforts industry made and the role our members played during lockdown to keep our players safe, connected, fit, entertained and educated during the worst months of the crisis” said IFSE’s Simon Little. “We are particularly delighted to see the positive impact that video games have had on mental health, the increased engagement of parents, and recognition of the support that members’ educational games had on home schooling.”