Survey: One in three Americans over 50 plays video games regularly

WASHINGTON — The video game industry aims much of its marketing at young males, but maybe it should reach for an older demographic.

An AARP survey said that 41 million Americans over 50, or one in three, play video games on a regular basis.

The results of the survey, conducted by AARP and the Entertainment Software Association in D.C., said three-quarters of gamers age 50 and over play video games weekly, and four in 10 play daily. As for gamers ages 60 and above, 43 percent play video games every day.

“As Gen X turns 50 and millennials raise tech-centric families, participation will only continue to expand just as games continue to evolve,” said Michael Gallagher, president of Entertainment Software Association.

Most survey respondents said they play video games just for fun, but maintaining mental sharpness was also cited frequently as a reason for playing.

But older gamers are not necessarily playing “Grand Theft Auto” or “Call of Duty.” Older players prefer video games that mimic traditional games, like card, tile, puzzle and logic games.

The online survey included responses from 2,964 adults ages 50 and older.

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Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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