Video games generated £4.2bn in revenues in the UK in 2020, the first time it has breached the £4bn threshold.
The figures come from preliminary data compiled by the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA), who estimate that entertainment revenues as a whole by 16.8% to a record £9.05bn.
Games proved by far the most profitable (beating music and video), which they have been since games became the UK’s biggest entertainment sector back in 2013, when sales reached £2.3bn.
The £4.2bn generated in 2020 is a jump of 14.5% on 2019 overall, but digital (perhaps predictably, given the pandemic) saw the largest jump of all. The digital games business, which ranges from mobile and streamed games to downloads, grew by 16.3% to £3.6bn in 2020.
This makes the digital games business alone larger than the entire video market, and twice as big as the music market.
While less impressive, physical games also saw growth in 2020, with a 4.6% increase to £598.5m.
The main drivers behind this growth are, predictably, the COVID-19 pandemic and the launch of the new generation of consoles in November 2020.
The UK’s best-selling game, meanwhile, was FIFA 21, with sales of 2.18 million units.
|Best-selling Games 2020|
|Chart Position||Title||Total Unit Sales|
|2||Call Of Duty: Black Ops Cold War||1,420,353|
|3||Grand Theft Auto V||1,127,222|
|5||Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare||897,350|
|6||Animal Crossing: New Horizons*||810,462|
|7||Assassin’s Creed Valhalla||665,815|
|8||The Last Of Us Part II||539,247|
|10||Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege||436,957|
Source: GSD Data provided by ISFE. Digital sales weeks 1-52 2020. *No digital data provided