As much as 66 percent of the United States' online population, or around 141 million people, are playing casual games on social networks, portals, and mobile devices, according to a survey by market research firm Newzoo.
In its "National Gamers Surveys 2010"
report for the U.S. and key European markets, the group points to data showing that those 141 million casual gamers make up 88 percent of the total online gaming audience in the States.
More than 80 percent of American casual gamers, or 113 million, play games on websites like like Pogo, PopCap, and RealGames, but Newzoo says there's a significant overlap between the platforms that users rely on for casual gaming.
The study shows that close to 62 percent, or 87 million, of casual gamers in the U.S. play games on social networks like Facebook and MySpace, while 54 percent, or 76 million, play games on mobile devices like smartphones or the iPad.
In the chart provided by the research firm below, 33 percent, or 46 million, of casual gamers play titles on all three platforms.
A substantial number, 24 million, also play casual games on both social networks and online portals, as shown below:
NewZoo also provided charts showing casual gaming audience numbers for several European markets (average of 58 percent of the online population, and 81 percent of online gamers -- based on provided charts) and their platform overlaps.
Casual gamers in the UK:
Casual gamers in Germany:
Casual gamers in France:
Casual gamers in the Netherlands:
Casual gamers in Belgium:
"It is clear from our data that there is no such thing as 'the typical casual gamer', as almost everyone plays a casual game at least now and again, including people playing World of Warcraft or Call of Duty Black Ops." says Newzoo's managing director Peter Warman.
Warman continues, "As games become a more integrated part of people's lives, there is a place and time for every type of game, regardless of platform."