The Newzoo MMO Games Market Report 2010 says that 47.5 million Americans play MMO games. More telling, 90 percent play free-to-play MMOs, whereas 12.5 million people pay up front to play MMOs.

“The overlap is larger when comparing browser and client MMOs. 71 percent play both browser and client MMOs, that require you to download the game, commented Newzoo. Contrary to most European countries, more money is spent in total on pay-to-play MMOs than on free-to-play MMOs, due to a significantly higher monthly budget spent per person. Total spending on MMO games is up 30 percent compared to 2009.”

Encouraging for developers and publishers looking to push MMOs on consoles, 57 percent of Xbox 360 players also play MMOs, and 61 percent of PS3 players play MMOs; more than half of this group also spend money on MMOs. Overall, 53 percent of males between 16 and 25 play MMO games, compared to 81 percent for consoles.

Other stats suggest that two thirds of MMO players (age 10 and up) are male, and over 70 percent of those who spend money on MMOs are male. Still, over half of gamers are older than 25, and 60 percent of those who pay to play are above 25 years-old.