Nielsen Says A Lot of Guys Play World of Warcraft

Instance group member Bung dropped the group an IM with a link to an article over at Ars Technica that refers to and sums up a report from Nielsen on The State of The Video Gamer.

Among the insights are:

  • The solitaire games included with Windows are the most played computer games
  • PlayStation2 gaming is finally trending down
  • World of Warcraft has 1,201,848 male players in the United States

That last number seems surprisingly exact.  It reminds me of the old adage about data from the United Nations, the more precise the number, the more likely it is to be based on BS.

Still, if that last number is correct, how does it jibe with the 2.5 million players in North America that has been attributed to the game?  That seems to mean a lot of women and Canadians are taking up the slack.

6 thoughts on “Nielsen Says A Lot of Guys Play World of Warcraft

  1. Wilhelm2451 Post author

    If we were speaking of geography I would say yes. But we’re talking about business and financial numbers. I’ve run into enough companies in my day that draw the lines in the western hemisphere between North America (US and Canada) and Latin America (everything south of the Rio Grande including Belize and Suriname) for financial reporting purposes that I tend to assume that it does not include Mexico.

    But in the case of Blizzard, I really don’t know the answer. Anybody?


  2. dave

    I AM Canadian ;)

    My wife, who also plays also helps your numbers. We have strong female representation in our guild and until recently had strong Canadian numbers.


  3. Wilhelm2451 Post author

    Well thanks for helping take up the slack then Dave! My daughter and mother are in there helping out as well with the female numbers, though they fall outside of that 25-51 demographic picked out by WoW Insider.

    Looking again at the numbers. assuming that the Blizzard 2.5 million players in North America is correct and that Nielsen’s number of 1.8 million players in the US aligns with it, that leaves 700,000 player to be accounted for.

    700,000 is about 2% of the population of Canada, while the US number represents about 0.5% of the population.

    If you include Mexico in the equation, then 700,000 represents a little less than 0.5% of the population of the two countries. So perhaps Mexico is included in that number.

    Or maybe Canadians are just crazy for Azeroth.

    Population numbers for this calculation courtesy of the US Central Intelligence Agency. Now with 50% fewer secret overseas prisons!


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