December 11, 2013

New research released this week by ESA shows that approximately 79 million Americans intend to purchase video games during the holiday season.

The report, “Holiday Purchasing Study 2013,” found that nearly 30 percent of those intending to buy video games and game-related items as gifts also plan to spend more on these items than they did last year. This strong demand is driven in part by the recent launch of the next generation of video game consoles, such as the Microsoft Xbox One, Sony PlayStation 4, and Nintendo Wii U.

Video games and related items are among the top five categories of gifts that Americans plan to buy this holiday season. Physical games and next generation consoles are among the top three categories of video game items most likely to be purchased by gamers and consumers aged 25 to 44 are planning to spend an average of $219 on video games and game-related content.

Survey respondents also acknowledged that playing video games is an important way for families and friends to connect and spend quality time together over the holidays. One quarter of respondents reported they are more likely to play video games with others during the season. Families travelling from out of state, kids out of school for winter break, and parents who play games with their young children all cite video game play as an important way to relax and have fun over the holidays.

As parents consider their holiday shopping purchases and game play, the video game industry continues to encourage them to check the ratings on all video games before purchasing titles for their families. ESA and the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) recently released a new public service announcement that reminds parents to check games’ ESRB ratings, use the ESRB’s free mobile app to learn more about game content, and set the parental controls available on all current consoles, PCs, and handheld devices. Additional information about these resources is available on the ESRB’s website.

Daniel Pickett
Daniel “Julius Marx” Pickett has been around toys his whole life. The first line he ever collected was Mego’s World’s Greatest Super Heroes line back in the 70s. He has been surrounded by collectables ever since. In 1999 he was confounded by a lack of information and news about some of his favorite toy lines he was collecting. Since he couldn’t find the information he decided to pursue it himself thinking other people might also be interested in the same news. He started writing a weekly column on the toy industry and action figure for a toy news site and in a years time he tripled the sites daily traffic with his updates, reviews and product features. He built relationships with every major toy manufacturer and many sculptors, painters and mold makers. He grew his hobby into a world wide expertise that the industry has embraced. In 2004 he teamed up with his toy buddy Jason “ToyOtter” Geyer and they created their own website Daniel has been quoted in both industry and mass media press outlets. Over the years Daniel and AFi have been sought out as experts in the field. Daniel was regularly featured on “Attack of the Show” on the G4 network as the primary contributor to their “Mint On Card” segment, and our front page has been linked to from USA Today’s “Pop Candy” Blog twice. Daniel’s content has also been featured on,,, Boing-Boing,, Ain’t It Cool News, the Official Star Wars blog, Geekologie, G4, CNet and Toy Fare magazine, among many others. He has consulted on toy lines, books, documentaries and TV shows. But all of that really just sounds snooty and “tootin’ his own horn” – the long and short of it is that Daniel loves toys and he LOVES talking about them.
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