ps4xboxpaxSure, the number of “casual gamers” has spiked in recent years thanks to the recent influx of popular smartphone games like Angry Birds and Candy Crush.

But traditional gamers — those still working out their thumbs on consoles and PCs — are certainly still in existence.

The NPD Group released a new report today that noted 34 million “core gamers” in the U.S — people who play video games for five or more hours a week on PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PC, or Mac (curiously, NPD left out Nintendo). That “core gamers” number has actually decreased about 3 million from NPD’s report on the same subject one year ago.

xboxone2121The “core gamers” of 2014 spend an average of 22 hours per week playing video games.

“Core gamers are really the lifeblood of the industry, spending tremendous amounts of time on their hobby of choice,” NPD analyst Liam Callahan said in a statement. “With the new console generation off to a great start, we can expect the amount of time spent gaming to increase as more core gamers adopt them.”

Though these “core gamers” are still more likely to play on consoles and computers, the report also said that two-thirds of the group also enjoys playing games on mobile devices.

Interestingly, NPD found that people still prefer purchasing physical games over digital downloads — in fact, 74 percent say they would opt for the physical format of the price was the same. Still, the 26 percent who would rather download their games is up from 21 percent last year.

NPD surveyed 7,927 Americans aged 9 and up for the study.


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