SuperData: Digital games spending up 12% in 2020

SuperData: Digital games spending up 12% in 2020

Consumers spent 12 per cent more on digital games in 2020 than the previous year.

That's according to research firm SuperData, which reports that $139.9bn was spent digitally on the medium last year. This increase is no doubt due to – what else? – a certain global pandemic which had people around the world encouraged or forced to stay at home for large parts of 2020.

Of this huge $139.9bn, the bulk came from mobile, which clocked in $73.8bn, while PC followed with a $33.1bn slice of the pie. Console, meanwhile, came in at $19.7bn, with $6.7bn being spent on XR.

SuperData reports that free-to-play saw a nine per cent increase in revenue in 2020, with 78 per cent of total digital spending coming from this business model. Asian regions – unsurprisingly –accounted for 59 per cent of free-to-play spending. On PC, $22.7bn of digital revenue came from free-to-play titles, while $6.7bn came from premium titles. Pay-to-play – presumable subscription titles – raked in $3.7bn.

In the free-to-play rankings, Roblox reportedly brought in $2.29bn in 2020, while League of Legends raked in a cool $1.75bn in revenue. Meanwhile, on the premium side of things, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare was the highest-grossing title, bringing in $1.9bn. This is likely due to the free-to-play battle royale mode Warzone, which was rolled out in March. Between its launch on December 10th and the end of 2020, SuperData reckons that Cyberpunk 2077 brought in $609 million.

The company also reckons that digital games spending will clock in at $142.2bn in 2021, a two per cent increase.

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.