Market research firm Newzoo estimates that the global video game market will reach revenues of around $86 billion by 2016. Victor Kislyi, CEO of World of Tanks behemoth Wargaming isn't happy with this -- he believes we can reach $200 billion in revenue by then.
As part of his keynote at DICE Europe 2013 today, Kislyi said that reaching $200 billion isn't going to be easy, but that if as an industry we consider more what sort of industry we actually are, we will have a much better chance of expanding rapidly.
"As an industry, we are creative and innovative -- but we have to actually understand what kind of business we are," he explained. What we haven't properly realized yet, he suggested, is that the most important currency we should be chasing is time.
Take the multi-billion dollar alcohol industry, for example. If you measure a person's drinking in time, saying that they spend around $10 an hour on alcohol, you can consider much more easily how best to expand their spending, Kislyi said.
"These industries are also after our time and money," he noted. "We have to find our own place in this world... Time is the currency here - it is the most important currency people have. We are paying for the time we are willing to spend."
Killing timeKislyi went further, stating, "Let's be true to ourselves - we are all in the time-killing business."
He estimated that around $2 trillion is spent globally by people each year on simply killing time, and that the games industry should be looking to take a larger piece of this figure.
"If we managed to carve just a few extra percent out of this time-killing pie, and monetize this extra time, we can easily reach this $200 billion goal," he added. "There's already a a generation of people used to this cyber-consumerism" -- in online chat platform Habbo, for example, kids think it's cool to pay money for decorations to impress their friends.
If we could simply take $0.50 a day from each of the approximate 1.2 billion active gamers around the world, we would easily hit the $200 billion target, Kislyi noted.
But part of this involves educating other industries around us to maximise the number of people seeing our games. The majority of bankers and investors are ignorant to the video game industry, he suggests, and need to be shown exactly how prototyping "the next big thing" happens, and why it would be a good idea for them to fund the next Candy Crush Saga.
Massive advertising networks are another industry that does not yet fully understand how video games work, and how they should be promoted -- the way they tailor video game marketing campaign also needs to be educated, the Wargaming boss added.