The European serious gaming market is expected to register a CAGR of 15% over the forecast period 2021 to 2026. The European serious gaming industry is currently a separate entity other than the conventional gaming industry but is influenced by the growing demand for games in the region. Moreover, the increasing penetration of smartphones and mobile gaming is further augmenting the demand for such solutions in various industries.
- For example, the region commands a significant penetration rate of smartphones and mobile subscriptions, which is influencing the demand for gaming solutions. According to Ericsson, during Q3 2019, the smartphone subscriptions in Western Europe and Central and Eastern Europe stood at 390 million and 350 million respectively; these numbers are expected to reach 490 million and 500 million by 2025 with the advent of 5G.
- In addition to this, government initiatives in the region are adopting gaming solutions for educational purposes. For instance, the LUDUS project aims at creating a European network for the transfer of knowledge and best practices with the help of serious gaming. The project is co-funded by the Erasmus+ program of the EU.
- Moreover, government agencies in the region are increasingly adopting serious gaming to train personnel of different departments. For instance, Europol is developing a game that is aimed at teaching law enforcement officers on tackling crypto crime. Such use cases of the technology in the region are expected to further augment the demand over the coming years.
- Improved learning outcomes are anticipated to increase the adoption of the serious game among end-users. The application of serious games as a promising learning method is a growing trend in education, healthcare training, etc. The traditional learning methods based on listening, reading, and observing are getting ineffective and only 20% to 30% of contents might be recalled by the person. The advancement in technology based on simulation learning is effectively driving the growth of the market, with a high percentage of learning outcomes.
- The technology is expected to not only reduce the training cost for the enterprises and government but also increase intuitiveness and increase the effectiveness of the training. Such benefits are positively influencing the demand for serious gaming in the market. With the recent outbreak of Coronavirus in the region is expected to further influence the demand for solutions in training space over the coming years due to the added benefits offered by the technology.
- On March 30, 2020, the International Nursing Association of Clinical Simulation and Learning (INACSL) and the Society for Simulation in Healthcare (SSH) supported the use of virtual simulation as a replacement for clinical hours for students currently enrolled in health sciences professions (i.e. nursing students, medical students) during the current public health crisis caused by COVID-19.
Key Market Trends
Application of Serious Games in Various End-user Industries to Drive the Market Growth
- The application of serious games in the end-user industries for purposes, such as education, training, problem recognition, enhanced problem-solving capabilities, social skills, and improving collaborative abilities, along with decision making, may drive the market during the forecast period.
- For instance, the application of serious gaming in healthcare where games are being used for neurodevelopmental assessments to children, and in defense games are being used for military simulations in virtual reality for tactical training is expected to be driving the demand.
- Healthcare applications of the technology in the region are increasing significantly, and healthcare professionals are incorporating the technology as part of their treatment process to keep patients engaged and help them recover faster with better cognitive skills. For instance, Xploro is a health information platform that uses augmented reality and games, along with AI, for reducing stress and anxiety about medical procedures.
- Furthermore, the application of technology in the automotive industry and other industrial space for training purposes is expected to increase significantly over the coming years. For instance, Diginext is offering VR/AR solutions for training technical personnel with VR technology.
- In addition to this, the increasing application of the technology in defense training for critical scenarios is expected to further augment over the coming years. For instance, the British Armed Forces are using a VR training platform featuring gaming technology. The UK Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) VR simulator platform is built on the Fortnite gaming engine and is expected to become part of a wider training program for the forces over the coming years. Such developments in the region are expected to increase over the coming years.
- High expenditure on advertising is witnessed across industries in the region, as advertisers use serious gaming to optimize brand awareness, target more audiences, and make additional traffic to their websites. This may drive the demand for serious gaming in the region during the forecast period.
- For instance, according to GroupM, during 2018, the media advertising expenditure in Western Europe and Central & Eastern Europe stood at USD 103.29 billion and USD 16.69 billion, respectively. By 2023, media advertising spending in Western Europe is expected to reach USD 117.99 billion. Such growth in the region is expected to be driving the demand for new technologies.
Western Europe to Witness Fastest Growth in the Forecast Period
- Western Europe is expected to gain prominence in the use of serious games over the forecast period, owing to the region's share of spending on advertising, retail, automotive, and healthcare industries. Countries, like the United Kingdom, Germany, and France, may drive the demand for serious games, as these countries are using technology in various industries.
- For instance, the British Armed Forces are using VR training platform, featuring gaming technology. The UK Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) VR simulator platform is built on the Fortnite gaming engine, and it is expected to become a part of the wider training program for the forces over the coming years. Such developments in the region are expected to increase over the coming years.
- A high level of smartphone penetration in the region is one of the key reasons for the faster adoption of serious gaming. According to the GSM Association the Mobile Economy Europe Report 2018, the number of unique mobile subscribers is set to grow from 465 million in 2017 to 481 million in 2025. At this number, the penetration rate will be 88% of the total population.
The European serious gaming market is fragmented and consists of many players with no company having absolute control over the market. Major players include Diginext (CS Group), Serious Games Solutions, and KTM Advance. Some of the key developments in the market are:
- June 2020 - Unus Terra, a serious game against COVID-19 that stimulates behavioral changes in the real world by leveraging persuasive design principles, won the DATA against COVID-19, the online DeepHack organized by EIT Digital to develop digital solutions for epidemic and pandemic lifecycle management.
- March 2019 - Diginext presented its latest virtual training and turnkey operator support solutions at Laval Virtual 2019, which may help businesses reduce production costs and increase operational efficiency.
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1.2 Study Assumptions
1.3 Scope of the Study
4.2 Market Drivers
4.2.1 Growing Usage of Mobile-based Educational Games
4.2.2 Improved Learning Outcomes are Expected to Increase the Adoption of Serious Games among End Users
4.3 Market Restraints
4.3.1 Lack of Assessment Tools to Measure Serious Game Effectiveness
4.4 Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Forces Analysis
4.4.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers
4.4.2 Bargaining Power of Consumers
4.4.3 Threat of New Entrants
4.4.4 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry
4.4.5 Threat of Substitute Products
4.5 Technology Snapshot
4.6 Assessment of Impact of COVID-19 on the Europe Serious Gaming Market
5.1.1 Advertising and Marketing
5.1.2 Simulation Training
5.1.3 Learning and Education
5.1.4 Other Applications
5.2 End-user Industry
5.2.4 Media and Entertainment
5.2.7 Other End-user Industries
6.1.1 BreakAway Games
6.1.2 Designing Digitally Inc.
6.1.3 Diginext (CS Group)
6.1.4 MPS Interactive Systems
6.1.5 Serious Games Solutions
6.1.6 Tygron BV
6.1.7 Triseum LLC
6.1.8 KTM Advance
6.1.9 Firsthand Technology
6.1.10 Bedaux Serious Games
A selection of companies mentioned in this report includes:
- BreakAway Games
- Designing Digitally Inc.
- Diginext (CS Group)
- MPS Interactive Systems
- Serious Games Solutions
- Tygron BV
- Triseum LLC
- KTM Advance
- Firsthand Technology
- Bedaux Serious Games