SuperData Report: VR Game Revenues Increased by 25% in 2020 to Hit $589 Million
2020 was a mixed a bag for the VR industry. The pandemic and the resulting social distancing and quarantine measures saw much of the world spending their time indoors. The pandemic also disrupted the production schedules for VR hardware in China as many factories closed their doors.
On the plus side, with many of us spending time indoors with little to do, many sought entertainment in many quarters including virtual reality and other immersive experiences. As a result, interest in VR spiked for much of 2020 as the latest report from SuperData Research shows.
The SuperData report shows VR videogame revenue grew by 25% in 2020, rising from $471 million to $589 million. The SuperData report attributes much of this to the release of Valve’s award-winning VR title Half-Life: Alyx that sold 1.9 million units in its first six months upon release. Oculus Quest content also contributed a big part to this bump in growth as Facebook announced that ten of its titles had grossed more than $2 million in revenues.
In spite of these positive results, VR growth in 2020 was likely hampered by the general unavailability of VR headsets for much of the year. Some of the most popular VR headsets were heavily backordered for much of 2020 and VR headset shipments fell 15% last year. Most notable was the general unavailability of the Oculus Quest and Oculus Rift S stock, which are two of the most popular VR headsets. The Valve Index headset also struggled with stock availability issues for much of last year.
The launch of the standalone Oculus Quest 2 VR headset in October 2020 was a big boon for the industry, helping drive the standalone category by up to 19% according to SuperData report. In Facebook’s Q3 call, Mark Zuckerberg had noted that that Quest 2 preorders had surpassed those of the original Oculus Quest by more than five times, exceeding the company’s expectations. Facebook’s Q4 earnings call will come at the end of January and it will be interesting to see what figures the company will share.
The SuperData report also shows the continued decline of PSVR which was once a VR frontrunner thanks to its many exclusives along with its huge PlayStation 4 customer base. But Sony Interactive Entertainment has struggled to keep up with the rest of the industry which has seen developers turn to the Quest platform. The last notable PlayStation VR exclusive was Marvel’s Iron Man VR.
According to SuperData, the whole XR industry is now worth $6.7 billion.
The data also shows Niantic’s AR title Pokemon Go was still in the top 10 of free-to-play mobile titles, grossing $1.92 billion in earnings and sitting at the fifth spot in the top 10 list. The title grew 39% year-over-year in spite of the COVID-19 restrictions.