If you’ve seen the infamous South Park parody of the popular online game World of Warcraft than you’re image of mmorpg players is likely to be that of greasy, overweight basement dwellers. Of course this popular stereotype couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s not just the uninvolved public that holds this view. Even many gamers may have false notions of what kind of people make up the broad spectrum of mmorpg players.
Research by such reputable organizations as Nielsen (a global compiler of TV and other media ratings) show that the male/female ratio in the high fantasy, D&Desque game of World of Warcraft is about 60 to 40. This means about 40% of World of Warcraft players are female. Of course this won’t come as a surprise to most serious MMORPG players who’ve likely quested or raided with a broad range of people through the years. Gamers who prefer other genres, however, are also likely to have a poor understanding of the MMORPG demographic. Hopefully as more information like this is released, the image that the broader culture has of MMORPG players will improve.
Another methodical source, The Daedalus Project, has more interesting statistics. Did you know that only 25% of MMORPG players are teenagers or that 22% of MMORPG players actually have kids of their own? But is the general view totally off the mark? Not necessarily. Around 60% of MMORPG players claim to have played for 10 hours or more continuously at least once in their gaming history. Just how many of these gamers repeatedly play for 10 hour marathon sessions is still unclear but certainly represents a significant part of the demographic.
Just as the average gamer today is well over his teens and is nearly as likely to be a woman as a man, the average mmorpg player is equally diverse. If anything, MMORPG gamers show signs of being more mature and social than gamers who focus on other genres. Nearly 80% of MMORPG players report playing either with friends or loved ones which makes the MMORPG player one of the most social creatures in our society!
By, Erhan Altay