The share of Brazilians who play electronic games has never been greater: 3 out of 4

The 9th edition of PGB, an annual survey, also indicates that the future and the present of the gaming industry in Brazil are mobile, feminine, and black.

A kid playing Free Fire on a cell phone
A kid playing Free Fire on a cell phone. Photo: Stanisic Vladimir/
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  • The middle class represents 62.7% of the electronic game audience in Brazil. Lower middle classes (D and E) account for 11.6% of players in the country;
  • Smartphones maintain their hegemony as favorite platforms to play, with 48.3% of the public’s preference;
  • Blacks prevail as the ethnic majority among the players, followed by players who identify as white (with 46.6%);
  • The study also points out that 49.2% of Brazilian gamers know what NFT is, and 63.8% have heard of the metaverse.

The 9th edition of the PGB, an annual survey by Go Gamers/Sioux Group, in partnership with Blend New Research and the ESPM faculty, shows that 74.5% of the Brazilian population (or 3 out of 4) play electronic games – a 2.5 percentage points growth compared to the previous year and the highest historical mark in the survey. The smartphone is their favorite platform, which also explains why the middle and lower-middle classes have been gaining space in this industry in recent years, representing more than half of the players in the country in 2022. The data also suggest that not only the future but the present of the gaming industry in Brazil is mobile, female, and black.

As in previous years, PGB data showed a growth (of 6.7 percentage points) in the share of Brazilian gamers choosing their smartphones as their favorite platform: 48.3% of them play on their cell phone. Computers (desktops and notebooks) and consoles are in second and third place, with 23.3% and 20% of the preference of Brazilian gamers, respectively.

It is also on mobile that Brazilian players spend more time. Those who play daily do so mainly on their smartphone (33.2%). Computers and consoles only stand out when the game period is longer (one to three hours in a row). Brazilian gamers are also increasingly used to playing online: 36.9% play online daily, and 28.7% play online three to six days a week.

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In Brazil, the smartphone also means access to electronic games. Because of the device’s greater penetration and the mobile Internet, more Brazilians are discovering games as entertainment.

Most players (62.7%) in the country are from the middle classes (B2, C1, and C2). Upper-middle-class people (B1) represent 12.3% of the public, second only to class A (13.5%). Lower–middle-class players account for (classes D and E) 11.6% of the Brazilian gamers.

Regarding income, 29.1% of the players have a family income between BRL 2,090.01 and BRL 4,180, and 27.5% receive up to BRL 2,090. The gamers with income from BRL 4,180.01 to BRL 10,450 account for 26.7% of the players.

It is also because of the cell phone that most Brazilian gamers are women (51%). “This predominance is related to smartphones, a platform with more gamers in Brazil and an even greater volume of the female audience (60.4%), in harmony with the general characteristics of the population,” said Guilherme Camargo, partner at Sioux Group and professor at ESPM’s graduate school, in a press release.

Regarding the ethnicity of gamers, PGB’s 9th edition shows that the most considerable portion of the gamer audience identifies as brown or black (49.4%, in total), followed by people who declare themselves white (46.6%).

This year, PGB heard 13,051 people in Brazil, in 26 states and the Federal District, between February 11 and March 7, 2022.

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The pandemic made more people play and continue buying games in Brazil

Brazilians played more because of the periods of social isolation caused by the pandemic in 2021 (41.7%) and also continued to buy electronic games: 36% of respondents said they had purchased up to three titles in the last year.

Among the public that chooses not to pay for games, 40.2% point to high prices ​​as the main reason, but the lack of access to financial services and alternative payment methods may have contributed to this behavior. According to PGB, 78.6% of respondents have a credit card, 17% do not, and just over 4% preferred not to respond.

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And even though 24.6% of players have stated that they have not spent anything on gaming equipment over the last year, there is still an almost correlated portion (22.6%) that invested at least up to R$499.99 in gamers products, and another considerable public (19.9%) who spent between BRL 500 and BRL1,250 on gaming equipment.

More Brazilian gamers also seem to be acquainted with new concepts involving the gaming world: eSports are now known by 81.2% of gamers in Brazil (a growth of 32.8 percentage points compared to the 2021 edition); 32.1% understand and own NFTs, and 63.8% claim to know what metaverse is.

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