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Slightly more time gaming than the average U.S. citizen watches TV

Marketing research firm NPD Group studied the gaming habits of 20,000 members of its consumer panel and found that the most avid group spends 48.5 hours per week playing computer games.

The study divided gamers into six groups. The most intense group, the “extreme gamers:”
— averaged 29 years old
— were mostly men (although one third were women!)
— played mostly on consoles
— purchased 24 games in the previous three months
— make up only four percent of the 174 million people who play computer games in the U.S.

The study also found that the average time spent playing games grew from 12.3 hours per week last year to 13 this year.

Study: ‘Extreme Gamers’ play 48 hours a week

Computers and computerized equipment have massively changed life in one generation and stories like this are snapshots of those changes. You can draw a lot of conclusions from the facts, ranging from “That isn’t healthy! Why don’t they go outside and play?” to “Whoa! What a market!”

Here’s a whole different slant though. Our own Chris Boyd has made a career out of the gaming he loves. This is his take:

“I think I probably fall at the extreme end, probably clocking up somewhere between 5 to 8 hours a day gaming. I also use that time to explore console based exploits, scams and other shenanigans so hey, it’s all for the greater good.

“I’d also add that if it wasn’t for computer games (wow, remember when people still called them that?) I might not be working with tech or computers now. The Commodore Plus/4 blew me away when I realized I could program crude text adventure games on it, and the fun of pulling both machine and game apart continues to stay with me today. If I couldn’t have played games on it, I’d have probably used it as a doorstop and ended up selling double glazing or something.

“Also, the Dreamcast was the best console of all time.”

Tom Kelchner and Chris Boyd