Best trends: 30% of Australians have made friends through gaming
New survey results offer a snapshot of the average Australian gamer's sentiments.
The stereotype of the lonely, basement-dwelling gamer is one that holds no weight in real life but is somehow still peddled by mainstream media outlets, those with no grasp on the culture, and occasionally by a few tone-deaf publishers and PR firms within the industry. Dell recently surveyed 5,673 video game players between the ages of 14 and 87 from 11 different countries and uncovered some interesting stats on player self-efficacy, self-image and held beliefs.
While there's a mountain of findings to dig through, we've picked out some of the most interesting and relevant to an Australian and New Zealand audience.
First, let's talk about the old assumption that playing video games alone in your room shuts you off from the outside world. Nearly 30% of Australian respondents reported they have made new friends through gaming and that 24% have managed to sustain a richer friendship outside of gaming together.
Only 20% of respondents would bail on holiday celebrations to continue gaming, 18% on a friend's celebration, and 17% on a family member's birthday.
Interesting, but that's a pretty broad question. What kind of family commitment are we talking about here? You might bail on Aunty Sandra's claggy apricot chicken, but there's no way you're missing out on Grandma Jo's outdoor spa. All I'm saying is, context is important here.
As for a healthy sleep cycle? A whopping 45% of Australian and New Zealand respondents reported they would be willing to forgo a good night's sleep in order to continue gaming. Which might explain why only 20% would give up caffeine in order to continue gaming. Even more concerning, only 53% of respondents said they would leave an intense gaming session when nature called. Okay, so maybe some stereotypes are alive and kicking.
What Australian gamers think of themselves
Some of the most interesting results in the survey show how respondents believe gaming helps them develop various beneficial skills. 43% claim gaming has improved their problem-solving abilities and 52% reported an increase in strategic thinking. Funny that, considering approximately 5% of Overwatch players know how to play the objective. 40% reported increased hand-eye coordination and 35% reported an increase in reaction time.
As for how bloody good Australian and New Zealanders think they are at gaming, not a lot of us have tickets on ourselves. Only 26% of respondents claimed to be "pretty damn good", whereas 44% said they couldn't give a rat's about skill level and that they "were just in it for the fun". Which is precisely what I say after getting nailed from half-way across the map two minutes into a round of PUBG.
There's a lot of stats to dig through in Dell's latest survey, including international findings we haven't reported on here. Check out the infographic below for a snapshot of some more survey findings.