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62% of all full PlayStation game sales were digital in 2020

How often do you buy physical copies ?

  • All my games

    Votes: 51 22.8%
  • Most of my games

    Votes: 68 30.4%
  • 50/50

    Votes: 31 13.8%
  • I buy some physical, but mostly digital

    Votes: 29 12.9%
  • I only buy digital games

    Votes: 45 20.1%

  • Total voters
    224
  • Poll closed .

KyoShiRo330

Member
Jan 21, 2018
3,103
12,763
955
31
Bordeaux, France
While just a few years ago the number of physical games sold greatly outweighed that of digital sales, the scales are quickly being rebalanced with digital overtaking the market across all console manufacturers



As reported by Ars Technica, “nearly 63 percent of [Sony’s] ‘full game’ sales for the 2020 calendar year came via digital downloads rather than games sold on discs at retail”.
For the sake of comparison, during the 2019 fiscal year, digital sales made up 55% of all software sold. Just one year earlier in 2018, much less than half of all sales were digital, landing at 43%.

While COVID-19 and the global pandemic led to many highstreet retailers closing in a number of countries, there were many other avenues which players could buy physical disks, such as e-commerce.
Furthermore, as is evidenced by the data, this trend began way before COVID-19, and is likely to continue after the fact.

 
Last edited:

Zok310

Member
Apr 29, 2013
2,157
302
665
Any wonder why their software revenue increased so much, they selling more games and it’s costing them less to sell it to you. Lower expenses and increased sales.
 
Oct 2, 2019
2,157
4,663
545
Digital is nice and any indie game i own is always digital, but when a LOT of places in the world still have bellow average internet speeds and the balloning size of games it's a diffcult sell, of course it's only a matter of time before physical copies end up being regulated to niche sites like limited run games.
 

sw0mp_d0nk3y

Member
Jun 3, 2013
1,009
1,505
770
I prefer playing digital games, because I'm lazy, and its nice not to bother with discs. That being said I usually buy physical, so I can play them and then resell them. I play mostly Destiny digitally the past few years, and am also playing God of War digitally right now on my PS5. The last 2 games I bought were Miles Morales and Demon's Souls on discs. I bought them on ebay for $45 each. Completed Miles and abandoned Demon's Souls. All done with both of them, so I sold them both on ebay for essentially all of my money back.

My general rule of thumb is if it is a single player story driven game, I'd rather buy physical so I can recoup some money, when I'm done. If it is multiplayer that I will be coming back to for years, I go digital (Destiny, Street Fighter V, etc). The exception is when games are on killer digital sales and I just want to add them to my digital backlog, and PS Plus games of course.
 

Certinty

Member
Oct 28, 2012
6,721
626
720
London
I’ll pretty much always go physical since it’s cheaper and I can sell the games.

But if there’s a digital game with a really good sale I won’t say no to that.
 

Rayderism

Member
Mar 4, 2017
773
531
400
Cleveland, Ohio
Well.....depends on the gen. PS1/2 is about 99% physical, a few have been bought as digital BC for PS3/4.

PS3 is about 50/50.

PS4 is 100% digital.

PSP is 100%....er.....ahem.....digital. Yeah. :messenger_smirking:

Vita is 100% digital.
 

Kupfer

Member
Nov 20, 2018
567
761
380
>90% physical. I like owning things I spend money on and not just having a license to use it.
But this becomes obsolete, since games often are unplayable in its V1.00 form.
 
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NoviDon

Member
May 31, 2020
181
394
265
went full digital years ago. last game I got physical was witcher 3 like 4 years ago.
 

graywolf323

Member
Jan 19, 2008
9,759
719
1,410
Richmond, VA
I've been all digital since the end of the 360/PS3 gen

I think the only physical game I've bought in the past few years was Ring Fit because it's physical only

edit: hopefully mods can fix the poll?
 
Last edited:

RaySoft

Member
May 31, 2013
1,017
1,608
760
Oslo, Norway
Failed the poll, the question is about digital games, not physical :messenger_face_steam:

While just a few years ago the number of physical games sold greatly outweighed that of digital sales, the scales are quickly being rebalanced with digital overtaking the market across all console manufacturers



As reported by Ars Technica, “nearly 63 percent of [Sony’s] ‘full game’ sales for the 2020 calendar year came via digital downloads rather than games sold on discs at retail”.
For the sake of comparison, during the 2019 fiscal year, digital sales made up 55% of all software sold. Just one year earlier in 2018, much less than half of all sales were digital, landing at 43%.

While COVID-19 and the global pandemic led to many highstreet retailers closing in a number of countries, there were many other avenues which players could buy physical disks, such as e-commerce.
Furthermore, as is evidenced by the data, this trend began way before COVID-19, and is likely to continue after the fact.

Flawed questionare when you don't have any options for people who only by digital.. What are you trying to prove?
I went digital when PS4 dropped, since I then don't have to change discs. I can do what I want from the couch. I still have a problem with it since even tough you only buy a license either way, you still feel better off with a physical copy in your hand.
 
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bitbydeath

Member
Nov 25, 2015
14,795
25,307
1,200
All digital. I like the idea of games always staying attached to my account where as physical copies could get damaged or sold off.
 
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KyoShiRo330

Member
Jan 21, 2018
3,103
12,763
955
31
Bordeaux, France
Flawed questionare when you don't have any options for people who only by digital.. What are you trying to prove?
I went digital when PS4 dropped, since I then don't have to change discs. I can do what I want from the couch. I still have a problem with it since even tough you only buy a license either way, you still feel better off with a physical copy in your hand.
Or maybe you can literally read the FIRST sentence of the topic where I said "Failed the poll, the question is about digital games, not physical".

Edit:
So the question is rather "How often do you buy digital copies ?" instead of physical?
Well There It Is Jurassic Park GIF



Hope a mod can fix it soon
 
Last edited:

HitCtrlAltDel

Member
Jan 16, 2012
529
64
680
I used to NEVER buy digital. However, this generation (PS5) I purposely made a decision to go 100% digital. Now it’s weird, I feel like physical games feel so old and antiquated.
 

The_Mike

Gold Member
Nov 5, 2017
5,048
8,112
750
Denmark
Bought TLOU remastered digital, drive club physical.

Returned drive club, I'm stuck with TLOU remaster.

Switch is the only platform I still buy physical. All other platforms are digital.

I used to NEVER buy digital. However, this generation (PS5) I purposely made a decision to go 100% digital. Now it’s weird, I feel like physical games feel so old and antiquated.

Welcome to 2003.

You'd feel that long ago if you were a PC Gamer.
 
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CyRuZ

Banned
Apr 18, 2018
292
437
330
Mostly digital to split the cost with my bro. Can't even say when I bought a physical release in the last 4-5yrs itself. Quite sure the last physical releases I got came bundled with the pro(Skyrim?).
 

Jigga117

Member
Aug 26, 2019
719
721
350
Where’s the option for all digital? Been buying all digital games, Music and Movies since 2013.
 

dvdvideo

Member
Sep 15, 2005
2,352
2,363
1,680
Hmmmmm, and yet 95% of all ps5's being made have the disk drive.......almost like sony is intentionally underbuilding the cheaper model just to say $399.......
 

ZippyTheOtter

Banned
Aug 29, 2020
906
881
330
I have boxes of old games since the NES era just sitting in my place, that I just move from place to place.

I've been going digital as I've realized I've early go back anymore to older generations. Getting older and less time for games, something's gotta give.
 

Arimer

Member
Feb 16, 2018
494
775
460
Give it another generation of console and there will no longer be a collectible market not to mention they'll just be selling us the same shit over and over. You won't be able to pick up the ps5 20 years from now and play it unless the hard drive is still good and your licenses are still good. They'll be selling you "your favorite game" over and over on each generation of console like they did with music from record to tape to cd to mp3 and so on. Or they'll just follow that trend and make everything subscription based so you still never own and you'll have to continually be giving them money.
 

Soulja

Member
Jan 4, 2016
202
355
410
I clicked on the wrong option after not reading the OP 🤦‍♂️

I only ever buy digital games when they're on sale. I will never, ever pay full RRP for a digital game.
 

Rockondevil

Member
Jun 2, 2013
685
222
675
Australia
I'm still physical only and will be as long as I can.
I do love the convenience of digital, but I prefer the option to trade back games I don't want anymore.
 
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Goro Majima

Kitty Genovese Member
Sep 2, 2007
31,656
4,810
1,470
I'd say 99% of my purchases are physical for console games. Bought a couple Lego games on sale recently and before that was probably the Mega Man collection on Switch in like 2017 or 2018?

It's probably been since 2015 when I last purchased a full $60 game digitally. I rarely have the need to play something immediately anymore so I can wait a couple days for a physical copy.
 

Skifi28

Member
Jun 28, 2020
1,990
5,004
410
Can't remember the last time I bought a physical copy. Covid has certainly not helped, digital is just so convenient.
 

zcaa0g

Member
Sep 3, 2018
1,321
1,807
405
All digital. I replay games several years later and don't have a desire to resell physical games nor a desire to swap disks. I have gigabit internet and no data caps so it's the most optimal solution for me. I'm not worried about MS, Nintendo or Sony going out of business in my lifetime.
 

NullZ3r0

Banned
Jun 8, 2017
1,620
3,965
525
Soon the disc player will be removed completely from console gaming. There are kids growing up today who think consoles with a disc slot looks odd.
 
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Shakka43

Member
Dec 5, 2018
940
1,332
455
All digital, especially now with a digital only PS5. Only disc PS4 game I bought for myself was inFAMOUS Second Son at launch.