Characteristics of gamers playing browser games

The majority of Polish gamers who declare that they play browser games select simple productions which do not require logging in. The result of 67% at that platform should not be surprising considering that the respondents devote in average from 15 to 60 minutes for a single session of such games. Apart from the above, registration constitutes a problem for some people, in particular if it is complex and requires the provision of sensitive data.

We noted that you play games in a web browser. We would like to ask you what type of games they are? Base: Respondents who play online games in a web browser N=406

Resigning from registration and accepted registration forms

Browser games face the problem of converting the people visiting their websites into registered gamers and, as a consequence, the monetisation of the games. Similarly, as in the previous surveys, many Polish gamers admit that they resigned from registration in a browser game. According to the respondents participating in the research in May 2020, 62% (4 percentage points less than in 2019) declared that they resigned from creating an account. Only 17% did not give up playing because of complex registration requirements. That trend has remained at a similar level for five years.

Chart 1. Which of these registration methods would you consider in the game?
Chart 2. Have you ever given up playing online games on a given site due to registration requirements or the need to provide too much data?
Base: Respondents who play online games in web browsers, N=406

Polish gamers are most willing to register an account if it requires providing an e-mail address. Such registration method is admissible for 67% of the respondents. 42% of them are willing to register if they can use their Google accounts and 37% prefer using their Facebook accounts.

Data the gamers are willing to share while registering their accounts

Polish Internet users are becoming increasingly aware of the use of personal data. According to the research of the European Commission “Special Eurobarometer 487a”, the Poles are familiar with the application of the rules of the general data protection regulation (GDPR). 56% of the Polish respondents of the EC survey are aware of the issues mentioned in the regulation, while the average result for the entire Community is 36%.

Polish gamers value privacy and personal data protection, although slightly less than in previous years. The most important protected information is the telephone number – 49% of the respondents would never provide it while registering an account in a browser game. However, the value of that information has decreased – three years ago 87% of the respondents would not have shared that information and 65% answered that they “would never provide their telephone number”. 35% of the respondents would never provide their place of residence if required in order to register to a browser game.

According to the present research, the Poles are the most willing to share their gender (81%), age (65%), interests (40%) and e-mail address (36%).

Chart 1. When registering in an online game, it is sometimes necessary to provide different data. Chart 2. Which one of them would you be willing to provide?
Base: Respondents who play online games in web browsers, N=406

Popularity of free-to-play browser games

Free-to-play is the leading model of accessing browser-based games. In May 2020, 64% of the respondents stated that they have played a free-to-play game at least once. 49% of them encountered such games in the month preceding the survey date.

Chart 1. Have you ever played free to play games, i.e. games to which access is free, but additional functions, bonuses and facilitation require small fees? Base: Respondents who play games, N=1036
Chart 2. Did you play free to play games in the last month? Base: Respondents who play games N=1036

Popularity of gaming genres

Gamers playing browser-based games have been asked about their favourite genres. Logical games are an unquestioned leader in that scope, indicated by 40% of the respondents. The next spots have been taken by card games (37%), arcade games (34%) as well as strategic games (33%).

What type of online video games in web browsers do you play at least from time to time (at least once in the last month)? Base: Respondents who play online games in web browsers, N=406

Average time spent playing games

The fans of browser games spend on average from 15 to 60 minutes on a single session. RPGs constitute an exception, similarly as in previous years, as the gamers spend from 61 to 120 minutes on a single session. It should be noted, however, that in comparison with the results of the 2019 research, the share of gamers who spend more than 121 minutes on a single session significantly decreased in 2020 for all genres of browser games. In the case of the most engaging genre, i.e., RPGs, in 2019, 29% of the respondents spent at least 2 hours playing, while in 2020 only 9% declared that they spent from 121 to 180 minutes and 8% – more than 180 minutes.

In the case of an insufficient number of indications of a given category, the results have been excluded from the analysis and marked in dark. They are presented for review only.

How long does it usually take you to play a given game when playing online games in web browsers? Base: Respondents who play a given type of game

Gaming frequency

The gamers playing browser games have been asked questions about the frequency of playing those types of games. In the case of all analysed genres, the majority of Poles play a few times a week or at least once a week. The most engaging genres attracting the gamers to play every day include farming simulators (20%), MMO games (17%), strategic games (14%) and card games (14%). While analysing the results for the previous year for all genres, a decrease in the number of respondents declaring that they play browser games every day has been observed.

And how often do you play the following types of online games in web browsers? Base: Respondents who play a given type of game

Sources of information about games

In the case of browser games, social media is the most popular source of information. Such a source has been indicated by 36% of the respondents. In 2019, such an answer was given by 37% of the respondents, but more popular sources in that period included Internet advertisements (42%) and information received from family and friends (42%). In this year’s research, 34% of the gamers learn about new games from their friends and family.

How do you learn about new online games in web browsers? Base: Respondents who play online games in web browsers, N=406

Such response was given by 36% of the people playing social media games in the previous year’s edition of the survey. A minor decrease in popularity of that form of obtaining information about games when compared to the previous edition of the survey may be a result of isolation and restriction of contacts connected with the pandemic. A decrease has also been observed with respect to TV programmes (12% in 2019 and 8% in 2020), newsletters/mailing (17% in 2019 and 11% in 2020) and online game websites (32% in 2019 and 26% in 2020). What is interesting, the share of the people who do not search for information about new games at all is the highest in that group (17%), similarly as in the case of gamers using personal computers.

Gaming style. Playing alone or with other people

The preferences regarding gaming style largely depend on the selected platform. Singleplayer is significantly more important for PC gamers. Console and browser games are more related to multiplayer modes through dynamic gameplay focused on action. 60% of the gamers have played with other people at least once. However, because of a growing popularity of logic and card games among the users of browser games, the share of people who always play alone is increasing (37%).

How do you usually play online games in web browsers? Base: Respondents who play online games in web browsers, N=406