Chinese games market grows 38% year-on-year

Chinese games market grows 38% year-on-year
Seth Tipps

By Seth Tipps

January 3rd 2014 at 8:44AM

Industry dominated by PC games tops $13 billion in 2013

China's game industry is still booming, shows a Chinese language report that claims the market produced revenues of 83.17 billion yuan.

That's $13.75 billion in US currency, and represents a growth of 38 per cent year-over-year.

Games in Asia translated the report from gaming site 17173 and China's GPC, which oversees and reports on the game industry, and shows that even with all the foreign investment in the country's games market demand hasn't peaked and growth is actually accelerating.

Most of this revenue – a staggering 64.5 per cent ($8.7 billion) – was earned by client-based PC games.

Browser games brought in over $2 billion, while mobile game sales claimed about $1.8 billion, or 13.5 per cent.

Social and console gamers were relatively small contributers to the market, bringing in less than $1 billion and a paltry $15 million respectively.

That could change though, as China has loosened the regulations that have kept major consoles out of the country.

Games in Asia points out that since browser games aren't easily played on anything other than a PC, the platform once declared dead could be credited with 80 per cent of the earnings in one of the most important new markets in the game industry.

This too might change as smartphones become more mainstream in urban Chinese society, but adoption does not guarantee good conversion rates, and for the time being most paying gamers in the country spend their time and money on the PC.

All this growth – and the hope of riches if the mobile market could be successfully monetised – has attracted a lot of attention from Korean, Japanese, and Western companies, but China's domestic industry is still growing and earned about $7.8 billion.

The domestic industry's share of total revenue has been shrinking over the past two years, possibly due to the appearance of Western developers on the Chinese market.