This past week, Japan’s Computer Entertainment Supplier’s Association (or CESA for short) published a new report, the 2014 CESA Games White Paper, which revealed some interesting facts about Japan’s gaming market over the past year. Mobile gaming in Japan is now the biggest share of game revenue as mobile games contineu to grow strongly, while console game revenues have been shrinking.
Numbers revealed from Famitsu publisher Enterbrain revealed similar results, starting that the market for console gaming (hardware and software together) reached a total of the equivalent of $4 billion in 2013. While that’s by no means small potatoes, the number is a 13 percent drop from 2012, where the equivalent of $4.8 billion was reported.
Breaking each number down separately, console hardware sales reached $1.5 billion compared to $1.9 billion the year before, while console software sales made $2.5 billion, compared to $2.9 billion the year before.
In terms of which console dominated the sales figures, the Nintendo DS led the charge with 46.7 percent of the market, while the PlayStation 3 was second with 21.8 percent, and the PS Vita in third with 11.7 percent.
Meanwhile, smartphone games have managed to reach $3.5 billion in sales for 2013. Even though console numbers are slightly bigger, there has been tremendous growth that shows this particular market is on the rise…especially considering it just made $370 million back in 2011.
CESA, however, reports slightly different numbers, with mobile gaming in general making $5.1 billion – which is more than the $4 billion number for consoles.
Feature phone games by themselves saw a revenue of $1.6 billion in 2013.
It doesn’t appear this trend will change anytime soon, even with the PlayStation 4 making waves in the Japanese market. It looks like now that mobile games have pulled into the lead, console games are never going to quite catch up in revenue. Microsoft is rolling out the Xbox One in Japan this September, but it’s not expected to make big inroads into the Japanese market after the poor showing of the Xbox 360 in Japan.