Who Is A Typical MMO Gamer?

3/2/2016
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If you ask a random person on the street who they think a typical MMO gamer is, they will probably mention something about a single unemployed teenager with no social life. For some reason, MMO players are always assigned negative stereotypes by non-MMO players, even more so than other gamers who don’t play MMOs.

However, according to recent surveys, that random person is wrong. Well, mostly wrong, but still wrong.

Myth #1: MMO players are all male

While most MMO players are indeed male, there is still a significant number of female players who we can’t just ignore. Based on relatively recent information, only 60% of players are male. A few years prior to that, around 85% of them were males, so you can see the number of females in MMOs just keeps growing as time passes. I wouldn’t be surprised if in a few years at least half of all MMO gamers are women.

Myth #2: Only kids and teenagers play MMOs

This is simply not true. The average age of an MMO player is 26. In fact, only about 25% of all MMO gamers can be considered teenagers between the ages of 12 and 17. The other 75% are older, and most of them are between 23 and 28. It’s interesting to note that, on average, female players are older than their male counterparts. 27% of all female players are over the age of 35, as opposed to 13% of males.

Myth #3: Only single people play MMOs

Why would you think that? 36% of MMO player are either married or engaged to be married. It’s true that most male players are indeed single, further feeding that “single male” stereotype. Females, on the other hand, mostly fall into the married column.

It is often theorized that this is because many of them are introduced to MMOs by their significant other, but we prefer not to speculate. Bear in mind - these 36% do not include players who are currently in a relationship but are simply not married/engaged. In reality, the number of “non-singles” is quite higher than 36%.

Myth #4: Most people who play MMOs are unemployed

Yet another incorrect assumption. Not all MMOs are Free-to-play, and even those that are often encourage gamers to invest some money in one way or another. Many serious MMO players hold down a job so they can keep playing competitively. Over 50% of players work a full-time job, and another 12% work part-time or are part-time students.

22% are full time students, 3% are home-makers, 1% are retired, and only 11% are unemployed. There’s no significant difference between males and females when it comes to being employed or not.

Myth #5: MMO players spend an unhealthy amount of hours playing

Well, that depends on what one considers an “unhealthy amount of hours”. The average gamer spends about 21 hours a week playing MMOs and 7.7 weekly hours watching TV. In comparison, the average non-gamer American spends 28 hours watching TV each week. Does that mean MMO gamers are about as healthy as your average American? It’s hard to say, really.

After reviewing the facts, you’ll notice that the random person on the street doesn’t really know what they are talking about. The truth is there’s no “typical MMO gamer”. The MMO gaming community is as diverse as they come, ranging from young high school students, to firefighters in their mid 50s, to retired project managers. However, every one of them has one thing in common: they are all here to enjoy the rich and fun experiences MMOs can provide.