Nielsen and ex corp. publish competitive gaming market report

Image credit: Nielsen / ex corp.

Data and market research company Nielsen and esports holding company ex corp. have published an extensive report on the global competitive gaming market in 2022.

The report notes that the competitive gaming market is expanding, with shooter games being the most popular genre and China being the fastest-growing market for competitive gaming.

Nielsen is a gloabl analytics and market research agency, trusted by companies in almost all industries. In the esports world, Nielsen notably worked with Fnatic on a whitepaper about the ROI in esports, as well as with ESL and IESF. On the other hand, ex corp. is best-known for being the owner of CS:GO skin platform CS.MONEY, as well as, and

The report created by the two companies puts gaming and esports industries together, noting that the global gaming and esports industries are growing at high rates all over the world. Still, the report also says that esports makes up just a tiny fraction of the gaming market, 0.8% to be exact.

The report differentiates casual gaming, competitive gaming and esports, and notes that the competitive gaming segment has seen the highest rate of growth out of the three. The segment has grown exponentially since 2020, and accounts for 28% of total market share. Competitive gaming has grown more than 70% since 2020, while casual gaming and esports grew around 50% each.

Shooter games remain the most popular genre for the fifth year in a row, recording 428m players. RPG games are second in player number, with 285m total players. The two frontrunners are followed by strategy games and MOBA games.

The shooter genre is also the most popular esports genre in the world, amounting to almost 50% of all traffic in all major markets but South Korea and China, according to the report.

South Korea’s most popular esports genre is strategy, due to the immense popularity of StarCraft there, and in China, esports audiences prefer MOBA games such as League of Legends and Dota 2.

Ivan Šimić
Ivan comes from Croatia, loves weird simulator games, and is terrible at playing anything else. Spent 5 years writing about tech and esports in Croatia, and is now doing it here.