80% of money spent on digital games goes to free-to-play titles

Fortnite was, predictably, the biggest game of 2019, according to a new report. Market research firm SuperData says Epic’s battle royale game topped the list of digital games, generating a total of $1.8 billion over the course of the year.

SuperData’s report also says free-to-play games make up four out of every five dollars spent on digital gaming – and 74% of that amount comes from mobile. Turning to premium games, FIFA 19 was the biggest earner, with FIFA 20 also included at No. 4. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and Grand Theft Auto V continue to generate revenue, too, at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively.

The games industry is worth a total of $120 billion, SuperData says, with PC games representing the second-biggest segment with $29.6 billion of revenue. After mobile games’ leading $64.4 billion market share and PC’s portion, console games make up a further $15.4 billion, with XR (augmented and virtual reality) and gaming video content (Twitch, YouTube, Mixer, and other gaming video providers) attracting around $6.5 billion each in 2019.

Overall, however, the premium games market dropped 5% year-on-year due to “a gap year in AAA game launches”. 2019 featured fewer “mega-hits” than 2018, SuperData says, after that year brought us Spider-Man PS4, Monster Hunter: World, and Red Dead Redemption 2 (on console).

Related: Here are the best free PC games

Conversely, the company predicts premium games will “have their biggest year ever” in 2020 thanks to “highly anticipated games like Cyberpunk 2077, The Last of Us: Part II and Animal Crossing: New Horizons” before the launch of the PS5 and the Xbox Series X. Click here to read the full report.