Each year, the Game Developers Conference gathers developers from around the globe to bring the best minds in video game today together. This year’s event, to be held in March, will mark the 30th year that the Game Developers Conference has been meeting, and we can certainly expect tons of exciting announcements and inspiring talks from industry leaders.
However, one of the most important things that comes out of the Game Developers Conference is the GDC State of the Industry report. The GDC State of the Industry is published annually, and features data obtained from directly polling over 2,000 game developers, the results of that report became available, and covered lots of great information, from developers general opinions on VR to how game developers are making money in the modern landscape of game development.
PC and Mobile Remain Broadest Platforms
One of the most revealing data sets contained in the GDC State of the Industry report regarded what platforms developers are working with. PC was the top platform, with 56% of survey respondents reporting that they were currently developing titles for PCs, with mobile at a close second with 50%. The nearest console was the PS4, with 26% of respondents stating that they were working on a project for the console, and Xbox One was in fourth place with 20%. Those numbers are in fact up from last year, with the consoles continuing to attract more attention from developers as the systems mature.
Microtransactions Trump Retail Profits
Another telling set of data that was included in the report had to do with how developers are making the majority of their profits. Retail has begun to fall far behind both digital sales and microtransactions, with only 13% of respondents reporting that they were making the majority of their profits from retail sales. In contrast, 29% of respondents named direct sales as the method through which they made the majority of their profits, and 21% said that microtransactions were the best part of their business.
While these statistics may be shocking, it is important to remember that these don’t necessarily reflect how much money is going into each sector of the video game economy. But for developers looking to predict how to make the most money possible off their next release, it is a fascinating statistic to look at.
Virtual Reality Receives a Vote of Confidence
The report also including information about developer’s responses regarding the new wave of virtual reality devices that are on the horizon. While the overall percentage of developers currently working on projects is still low, at 16%, the overall attitude towards VR technology is overwhelmingly positive. 75% of respondents said that VR/AR is a good, long-term business strategy to invest. That being said, most developers do not think that VR will replace your console anytime soon, with only 27% of respondents stating that they thought VR would ever see the level of adoption, about 40% in the US, that consoles currently enjoy.
Check back with us in March for more coverage on what you can expect from the 30th Game Developers Conference in San Francisco.