Newzoo: Shooters see spike in PC popularity during lockdown

Newzoo: Shooters see spike in PC popularity during lockdown

Shooters have seen a huge spike in popularity between December 2019 and March 2020.

That's according to research firm Newzoo, which reports that 46 per cent of the 1,204 PC gamers it spoke to during March had been playing first-person shooters.

Ubisoft's Rainbow Six: Siege saw the highest share of users at the moment, coming in ahead of the likes of Counter: Strike: Global Offensive and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. Rainbow Six's increase in popularity is also due to the game launching in China, bringing in a massive number of players.

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare's battle royale mode Warzone was also released during this period. The title is free-to-play, meaning there is little barrier to entry. Newzoo reports that the game performed well with players, as well as streamers. The battle royale romp is also a multiplayer affair, so it's common for people to play with their friends.

On average, users spent 38 minutes each day playing shooters in December, a figure that increased to a full hour in March.

Between December and March, shooters saw a 40 per cent increase in popularity, while gambling titles saw a 36 per cent rise. Card games saw a 34 per cent increase, likely due to the launch of Riot's Legends of Runterra game, while arcade titles rose by 28 per cent. Platformers and battle royale games saw a 25 and 17 per cent increase in popularity respectively.

MOBAs were still the most popular genre in March.

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.