NPD Group data has been released, and the iGEA has confirmed NZD$179.6 million in NZ retail sales for 2011.
The data, for the first time, represents close to 100% of the retail market in New Zealand, although, just as with Australia, the data does not include digital sales and downloads, subscription services or other online transactions.
Mark Goodacre, director of the New Zealand iGEA, said: "As people increasingly consume interactive entertainment through mobile devices and online, it’s becoming more difficult to collect sales data through a single source."
"Looking at the latest Digital New Zealand report, we see that Kiwi gamers are almost buying equally through online stores and local retailers."
Digital New Zealand reported 38% of consumers' preference for online purchases, compared with 37% for traditional brick and mortar retail. Meanwhile PriceWaterhouseCoopers' Media Outlook 2011-2015 report agrees with the increased importance of digital, predicting revenue growth of online games of 12.5% and mobile games of 10.5% by 2015.
Stephen Knightley, chairperson of the New Zealand Game Developers' Association, added: "New Zealand is already a net exporter of digital games. Local game studios selling our games over the internet and smartphone App stores earn more than Kiwi gamers spend playing digital and online games."
In spite of this positive outlook, the PwC report also hastens to add that New Zealand needs to catch up with digital sales, so there is still some investment to see a good balance win out.
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