What do gamers rely on more when buying video games - consumers reviews or critic scores?
June 17th, 2024, Lesley Simeon

What do gamers rely on more when buying video games - consumers reviews or critic scores?

From genre to platform, price to reviews, the decision of which video game to buy can be complex. But who do consumers trust more in their pre-purchase journey - players who've conquered the game, or seasoned critics offering their professional takes?

Data from a recent YouGov survey that polled consumers across 17 international markets reveals that between consumer and critic reviews, peer reviews matter more. Nearly a quarter of consumers across markets (24%) say they rely more on consumer reviews for video games, while less than one in ten (6%) rely more on critic reviews.

A quarter of all respondents (25%) rely on both equally and 24% of them care for neither – perhaps other factors like titles being offered for free or certain video game classics making their way to latest consoles wield more influence on their purchase decisions?

Although similar proportions of men and women across markets refer to consumer reviews, men are twice as likely as women are (8% vs 4%) to rely on critic reviews when buying video games, YouGov’s demographic data shows.

Breakdown by market

Critic reviews

Consumers in the UAE (11%) and India (10%) top out in their preference for critic reviews for video game purchases, closely followed by Australia (9%) and Mexico (9%). In Europe, Danes, French and Spain (6% each) are the most likely to lean into critic reviews as well, while Americans (3%) are the least likely to, across all markets.

Just 4% of consumers in Great Britain - where video content recently dethroned video games as the top entertainment sector - refer to critic reviews of video games.

Consumer reviews

Equal proportions of Mexicans (35%) and Indonesians (35%) prefer to tap into reviews from other consumers when it comes to video game purchases, while in Europe, nearly a third of Spaniards and Hong Kongers (32% each) follow suit.

Britons (17%) and Germans (18%) are at the bottom of our list of consumers who rely more on consumer reviews for video game purchases.

Both equally

Overall, Hong Kongers (41%) account for the largest proportion of those who prefer both type of reviews equally, followed by consumers in Indonesia (38%) and the UAE (35%). In India, consumers are most likely (31%) to rely on both consumer as well as critic reviews to buy video games - which now interestingly feature mythological themes as well.

Also: Does adverting video games as ‘limited edition’ make consumers more likely to buy them?

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Methodology: YouGov Surveys: Serviced provide quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. The data is based on surveys of adults aged 18+ years in 17 markets with sample sizes varying between 500 and 2002 for each market. All surveys were conducted online in February 2024. Data from each market uses a nationally representative sample apart from Mexico and India, which use urban representative samples, and Indonesia and Hong Kong, which use online representative samples. Learn more about YouGov Surveys: Serviced.
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