ISFE’s GameTrack consumer survey recently did some research into the reasons behind why gamers still buy physical versions of games, with data given by buyers across UK, Spain, France, and Germany. Currently, an average 75% of sales are still done through physical copies through retailers and online stores. [Thanks, Gamesindustry.biz!]
According to the buyers, the main reason was that they liked having a boxed collection, with 32% of the buyers responding with this reason. Physical version consumers also enjoy the ability to lend, sell or gift the game to others. Around 7% of the people chose physical versions due to having bad internet speed, 5% because of limited internet access, and 10% because of hard drive memory limitations.
Other reasons stated included buying physical for the collector’s or special edition (6%), proximity to shops (9%), and not finding the game on digital stores (6%). Surprisingly, issues regarding needing a credit or debit card were among the lowest cited, contrary to retailer claims.
As for why gamers buy digital, the largest reasons cited were because digital costed less, either by base price (30%) or by discounts (20%). 16% of the respondents said they liked having all their games with them, while 15% said that the game they wanted wasn’t available physically. 15% of the respondents wanted to play the game immediately when they saw it online, while another 11% of people didn’t want to leave the house to go to the store. Finally, one of the prevalent reasons was that physical games just took up too much space (10%).
In total, around 23% of the buyers preferred full digital game purchases rather than physical versions.