COVID-19: The Video Game Industry’s Dream Come True
The revenue of the global video game market is forecast to increase 20 percent by the end of the year. MarketWatch predicts the video game industry worldwide will make $179.7 billion. This means the video game industry will have earned more than the global film and North American sports industries, combined.
Game console sales are also predicted to have risen 20 percent from their 2019 levels to $52.5 billion. Sale rates for digital games for home computers is predicted to increase 11 percent to $39.5 billion. Mobile game sales ballooned to a 24 percent increase compared to 2019 with an expected revenue of $87.7 billion.
This surge in sales is largely a result of the covid-19 pandemic. The lockdowns are forcing people around the world to stay home from their jobs, schools and regular family visits. So, more people have had more time on their hands.
A survey released this past summer shows some startling trends in the video game industry. As of May 2020, the U.S. domestic market had grown 7 percent since 2018. That may not sound like a lot. But consider these statistics: Three quarters of Americans—244 million people—play video games. That’s an increase of 32 million people from two years ago. Sixty-five percent of American gamers use more than one device, up from 59 percent in 2018. The average American gamer played 14 hours a week in 2020, compared to 12 hours a week in 2018. But that’s only the average. In 2020, over 78 million Americans—almost a quarter of the population—played video games more than 15 hours a week.
The survey sample size was “5,000 active U.S. gamer (age 2+).”
There is a correlation between the increase in video game usage and the covid-19 pandemic. Thirty-five percent of American gamers said “their current play time during covid-19 is higher than their play time from earlier this year.” “Video games are one of the primary ways friends and family are staying connected through a difficult time,” said surveyor Mat Piscatella.
And what kind of games are people binging on? As of November 28, the top-selling video game in America is Call of Duty: Black Ops: Cold War. It’s a game where the player is a cia assassin causing a bloodbath while hunting down a Soviet spy—or in “zombie mode,” massacring the undead. This game was released in November. Another game in the Call of Duty franchise, Modern Warfare, made it to number 2. The main character in that game is an American soldier hunting terrorists while in a Middle East civil war. Another game that was only released in November was Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla. It’s currently the seventh-biggest-selling game of 2020. It involves slaughtering opponents as a Viking raider—complete with customizable tattoos.
Trumpet writer Robert Morley wrote the following in his 2012 article “Video Games: The New American Pastime”:
Speaking as the feature presenter at a conference in Las Vegas … industry legend and Skyrim director Todd Howard offers [this] explanation [for why video games are so popular].
“What can games give you that nothing else can?” he asks.
The answer: Pride. “Pride in something you did,” he says.
Are we really so desperate? Are we so lacking in aspirations and accomplishment that this is what it has come to for so many Americans? What a horrible and sad statement.
America used to be called the “land of opportunity.” It was a place where a downtrodden pauper from the backwaters of the world could immigrate to and develop a wealthy business, or found a city, or become a decorated war hero. America used to be the land where a young man could start drawing lines on a paper and become Frank Lloyd Wright. It used to be where a kid from rural Kansas could go to West Point and become Dwight Eisenhower. It used to be where a Kentucky boy from the backwoods could enter politics and become Abraham Lincoln. It was the land where an Ohio Boy Scout looking at the night sky could become Neil Armstrong.
It seems the only thing Americans take pride in now is their high scores from Japanese-developed digital fantasies.
Mr. Morley continued:
Imagine what those 5 million Americans who spend 40 hours a week playing video games could accomplish if they instead devoted that much work to something useful. In just five years, this country would have 5 million more master designers, craftsmen, engineers, pilots, scientists, builders, artists, architects, painters, geologists, farmers, inventors, poets, screenplay writers, opera singers, tuba players—the list goes on and on. Imagine how different America could be if the [then] 183 million Americans who spend at least one hour a day playing video games did the same thing.
And now imagine the world we might live in if all these people took just a portion of that time and spent it with their families and taught their children how to become experts themselves.
What a different, more prosperous, more inspiring, more beautiful world we would live in. How would your life be different? Are you willing to change the course of your child’s life?
Almost 2,000 years ago, the Apostle John wrote of what was worth achieving in life. Quoting Jesus Christ: “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).
He also wrote in 3 John 2: “Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.”
What kind of prosperity and abundant living is the Apostle John writing about? Let the Apostle Paul answer in Hebrews 11:33-34, speaking of the men of God in the Old Testament: “Who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, Quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, waxed valiant in fight, turned to flight the armies of the aliens.”
In other words, real accomplishment, real success. We are physical human beings living in a material world, and there is so much we can achieve working with this material world. There is so much we can achieve with just working with other human beings.
But how do we achieve success?
World-renowned educator and theologian Herbert W. Armstrong pondered this exact question and provided the answer:
Failures are not foredoomed. Success does not just happen! It is governed by seven definite laws. If you know them, and apply them, the happy result, in the end, is assured.
Every individual was put on this Earth for a purpose! Every person was put here to become a success. Every human ought to enjoy the sweet taste of success—to find peace and happiness—to live an interesting, secure and abundant life! And in order that all might—if willing—reap such full and abundant rewards, the Creator set in motion actual, definite laws to produce that desired result.
You too can enjoy success—real success—not the make-believe achievements a cheap virtual toy can give you. It’s yours for the taking. But success doesn’t come from any “get rich quick” scheme. There’s hard work involved. There are definite laws to follow. But applying these laws can make life more rewarding than you’ve ever thought possible. To learn what those laws are, request Mr. Armstrong’s free booklet The Seven Laws of Success.