While most video game demographics focus on male millennials, female gamers are often ignored. ESA states that adult women are now the largest single demographic in the gaming community—women over the age of 18 represent 36 percent of the overall gaming population, compared adult men over 18 (35 percent). More women in the US own a video game system than men, and more are actively involved in eSports, according to recent studies. Strong, female main characters have become more prevalent among video game developers and as the world becomes more connected, so too will the female audience. Want to get to know this often-overlooked but growing demographic? We’ve compiled some telling statistics that can help.

Female Gamers Are:

Active Video Game Consumers But Most Don’t Consider Themselves “Gamers”

  • 48 percent of women play video games. (Source)
  • 9 percent of women aged 18 to 29 would describe themselves as a “gamer.” (Source)
  • 41 percent of women in the US “frequently” purchase video games. (Source)
  • 42 percent of women in the US own video game systems such as an Xbox or PlayStation, compared to 37 percent of men. (Source)
  • Over 75 percent of female gamers in the US play on mobile phones, while approximately 60 percent play on tablets. (Source)
  • For mobile games, value is the most important feature that drives satisfaction in women, while graphics are least important. (Source: Nielsen)
  • Nearly half of female gamers in the US prefer PC laptops over traditional consoles. (Source)
  • 58 percent of women prefer the Puzzle genre for mobile games, followed by Arcade (48 percent) and Casino (37 percent). (Source)
  • 46 percent of female gamers (globally) have played a Super Mario franchise in the past 3 months—21 percent of which are between the ages of 21 to 35 (Source: Newzoo)
  • 30 percent of gamers on YouTube are women. (Source: YouTube)
  • 52 percent of female gamers do not believe that playing violent video games can lead to violent behavior in real-life. (Source)


Involvement In ESports

Twenty-two percent of women say they’re involved in eSports compared to 18 percent of men, according to a report by PwC. “While the difference is relatively small, it indicates an early trend that women may be just as, if not more, engaged with eSports than males,” PwC noted in the report. “For viewing versus playing, men are playing slightly more than women, and men appear to watch from a competitive lens, while women appear to watch for enjoyment and for the social aspect of the viewing experience.”

A separate study by Newzoo exploring the link between traditional sports enthusiasts and eSports found that 30 percent of women were interested in eSports but not basketball.

“As the female eSports audience continues to grow, so too will the number of female players,” Deborah Bothun, entertainment, media and communications leader at PricewaterhouseCoopers told [a]listdaily. “Overall treatment of females in the gaming community has become a noteworthy topic that is being discussed, and we have heard discussion of all-female tournaments, for example.”

Koh Kim, formerly co-head of business development at Mobcrush, saw the large female audience on mobile opens up new opportunities for female pro eSports, particularly with Vainglory and Hearthstone.

“We’re seeing a better mix of male and female players in the top ranks, and many more mixed teams,” Kim told [a]listdaily in March. “That’s a great message for the community. There are more female players and personalities, giving other females the role models they’re looking for. That really puts out the message that any hard-working, talented player will have a platform to succeed, and the support of the community.”

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