What Do Gamers and Gamblers Have in Common?

In 2021, a variety of governmental bodies and gambling commissions who were conducting their usual surveys of gaming and gambling stumbled upon a link — the majority of people who regularly enjoy online gaming, like PC and video games, are also betting for real money at online casino sites. What they also found was that the technological advances of casino companies, game providers, and improved access in recent years have had a great impact on converting gamers into gamblers and this transition makes sense as gamblers and gamers have quite a few qualities in common.

Target Demographic

Although anyone can be a gamer  regardless of age, sex, or location, gaming brands tend to target a specific audience that has been proven to be more responsive. Studies have found that gaming and gambling share a large overlap when it comes to their target audience - namely, men aged 18 to 35. There are a ton of different psychological motives for people to play, including more free time due to good jobs or lack of work, developing gaming skills at an early age, technological savviness, and more. People play for many reasons, and there are even enough high-profile women playing the top games that are now causing gaming companies to think about their target outreach.

What Do Gaming and Gambling Have in Common?

Let’s take a look at how the history of gaming has developed around the world. While video games have been around since the 1970s, online casinos did not really hit their stride until about 2 decades ago. Until only a few years ago, while gambling was still considered a largely in-person activity, the gambler and the gamer personas had little in common. However, the digital advances made in gaming in the last two decades have definitely seeped into the gambling market as well. Casino brands have realized that the big draw of video games is unique content, strategy, variety, and quality gameplay. These same ideas have been utilized to make new-generation casino games.

Casino games online haven’t been “old-school” or “simple” for a while. With extensively quality graphics and ideas, players who engage in slots or poker now expect video-game-like quality and playability. There are games with storylines, a giant variety of card games that have interesting themes, and digital updates that make them more exciting to play online compared to in person. Casino companies are looking for ways to draw in a bigger variety of players, people from different ages, backgrounds and cultures, and in this current digital age, that is finally happening. The worldwide shutdown for the pandemic provided online casinos with more different types of players than ever.

Experts also consider that part of the easy transitions from gaming into gambling and vice versa is the willingness to spend money on digital entertainment. While gamblers are often “frowned upon” by certain governing bodies on account of addiction and depression or anxiety from overspending - it turns out that gamers spend plenty on non-gambling-related games. A new NPD report for 2020 showed that video gaming spending was at an all-time high, with the average player spending over $200 a year on games, with plenty of players spending well above that. From consoles, to games, to items and packs within the games themselves, players are already unloading their bank accounts for this type of entertainment. With gambling, it is similar - players do spend, but they do sometimes win, balancing some of that out. Either way, spending money in the gaming industry is nothing new.

We can see the popularity of gambling amongst the gaming audience take off, especially with numerous Twitch and YouTube streamers now featuring popular casino games in their videos.

The clear difference between gambling and gaming is that gambling does rely on luck over strategy. However, more advanced gamers and more game-savvy players are likely to see the line between video games and online casino games blurred.

Despite the significant differences between video games and online casino games, the audience of both undeniably share a lot of common traits and interests. It is easy to see why the online casino industry continues to attract more and more gamers, as in-game gamification is on the rise and the games are looking more

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Last Updated: Feb 03, 2022