Our friends at Titan Analytics have released the results of an extensive survey they collected at the end of 2021. It’s the first (that I’ve seen) extensive look at who play-to-earn gamers are.
I thought it might be interesting to call out some of their findings where they show a sharp contrast with the overall averages of all gamers.
It’s no secret that crypto is dominated by dudes. Men are more than twice as likely to use crypto than women (Pew Research).
A similar split exists in gaming, though not quite as bad, with women making up 41% of gamers in the US (ESA).
Combining crypto and gaming seems push things squarely into Dungeons and Dragons territory. Titan Analytics reports that a whopping 90% of play to earn gamers are men!
Across all gamers, the average age is higher than you might expect. ESA pegs the overall average at 35-44 years old.
Titan found that the average age of play to earn gamers was only 30 years. Here again, adding crypto to the mix skews the average so that it looks as much like crypto as like gaming. The 18-29 year old age group are by far the most likely to hold crypto (Pew Research).
Country of Origin
There were no surprises in where the gamers call home. Most play to earn gamers are from Asia–specifically southeast Asia–according to Titan. This is no doubt skewed by the huge popularity of Axie Infinity which is very popular in the Philippines.
What you may not know is that the same is true of gamers generally. Most gamers globally are located in Asia (Finances Online).
This one has no real corollary in the general gaming market, but because of that it is very interesting. Titan reports that most gamers hold less than $5,000 USD worth of crypto and that makes sense because of the modest income you’re likely to get from gaming for a living.
The surprise was the proportion of play to earn gamers that have more substantial holdings.
The upper ~40% of that distribution holds over $5,000 USD worth of crypto, which many in the US would likely call “a lot of crypto.” I’d be interested to know how much they held before they started play to earn gaming. Did they earn their bag by gaming?
Preferred Game Titles
Those familiar with play to earn games will know this intuitively, but P2E is a cottage industry; it’s extremely fragmented with only one really massive game to date. That game is Axie Infinity, the title that launched the category. Axie is a Pokemon-style card game though, which isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. We can expect a lot more games to come in a much wider variety of genres.
The play to earn gamers in this survey are mostly pretty heavy gamers, with well over 60% of them playing 10+ hours per week and 45% playing 20+ hours per week.
The global average is only 8.45 hours per week, and just under 8 hours in the US (Statista).
Even among play to earn gamers, game quality is important. The players in this survey ranked game elements as more important than economic potential when choosing a game.
I think that’s a very healthy indicator for the whole ecosystem. Many of the current crypto games are lackluster at best, thinly-veiled DeFi or mindless button mashing like Pegaxy.
There are some games on the horizon that are much better though. I’ve been closely following the one being developed by Big Time games and it looks much more like a triple A title–deep, immersive and beautiful.
Check Out the Full Survey Results
We’ve just scratched the surface of the full results presented by Titan Analytics. For more data points plus a breakdown of the different gamer personas they identified, head over to Titan Analytics.