Add-on content is leading the charge in generating revenue for the digital console space.
According to SuperData Research, the worldwide digital console revenue will reach $7.8 billion this year. The kicker? More than half of that revenue will be coming from add-on content. This add-on content includes DLC and microtransactions.
In the recent study published by SuperData Research, they found that developers today are increasingly relying on additional content to extend the life cycle of their games, especially in the AAA market.
Some of the largest AAA publishers such as Ubisoft, EA, and Activision-Blizzard rely on additional content revenue. Three-quarters of the total digital revenue earned by the top console titles came from add-on content.
Take-Two’s Grand Theft Auto V became the highest-earning digital console game of all time thanks to additional content sales. In total, the game has earned $1.4 billion in revenue with 78% of that coming from add-on content.
Activision-Blizzard’s Overwatch has seen players having already spent $61 million on console to purchase the in-game lootboxes that contain items such as characters outfits.
However, publishers have to be careful of when they release add-on content. The study found that players do not appreciate games being released with numerous add-on content packs available for purchase at launch.
“Players are still weary of games that release alongside numerous paid add-ons, believing content has been cut from the game itself,” says Carter Rogers, Senior Analyst at SuperData Research. “2K’s Evolve saw immersive consumer backlash at launch for this reason, which hurt the game’s long-term potential.”
There were other interesting findings in the report. One in four gamers that buy add-on content buy a season pass at some point. Season passes are found to be acceptable in the eyes of gamers. Finally, some of the most commonly purchased forms of add-on content are map packs and character unlocks.
With $7.8 billion expected to be the total this year, 2017 is shaping up to be a very profitable year.