US spending on games to drop 8.7% this year, says NPD

Interest in going out and doing things, higher food and fuel prices cited as factors in research group’s expectations; Elden Ring predicted to top full-year sales charts

The NPD Group has reported declines in US consumer spending on gaming every month so far this year, and it doesn’t expect the rest of the year to reverse that trend.

The industry-tracking firm today released a note from NPD analyst Mat Piscatella projecting that US game spending would end 2022 at $55.5 billion, down 8.7% year-over-year.

“Some of the drivers of the decline include the return of experiential spending, higher prices in everyday spending categories such as food and fuel, the uncertain supply of video game console hardware and certain accessories such as gamepads, and a lighter release slate of games, among others,” Piscatella said.

He added that PC, console, and mobile gaming are all expected to see declines, while the only category expected to see gains year-over-year is subscriptions.

Piscatella also predicted that Switch would be the top hardware platform in terms of units sold, while the market leader in total dollars spent on hardware is a toss-up between Switch, PS5, and Xbox Series X|S.

He also expects Elden Ring to be the best-selling premium game in the US for 2022, marking just the third time since 2009 that title hasn’t gone to a Call of Duty title.

The other two times that happened were 2013 (Grand Theft Auto 5) and 2018 (Red Dead Redemption 2).

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