Physical games dying out as digital demand booms

EA Sports boss Andrew Wilson has warned that retailers like Game face entry to the "corporate graveyard" as digital gaming demand continues to gather pace on their physical high-street counterparts.

Wilson, speaking at the Develop conference in Brighton, highlighted that in 2010, 45 per cent of gaming revenue came from digital channels such as Valve's Steam, Xbox LIVE, PSN and Facebook.

"People are no longer going into GameStop or Game en masse and paying for content in a quantity," he said.

He pointed towards a shift in attitudes for consumers where they are in control of their digital lives through devices such as the Kindle, or services such as Netflix, and warned gamers now expect games to arrive in the same way that they consume their TV content.

However, he stated that the physical game world still had some legs in it but indicated that the industry needs to make some change if it is to keep pace with the digital revolution.

"There is still a business of $60 games sold at Game and GameStop - that's still legitimate for now," he said.  "I won't predict when that will die. I won't prophesies when games on discs will go away, because the reality is that as long as gamers continue to line up and buy them we will make them.

"But the amount of people on Facebook, on PSN and Xbox Live is growing. There is a shift here. If we don't get ahead of it, we will find ourselves in trouble.

"We have seen the Blockbusters and the HMVs change before our eyes. The corporate graveyard is littered with companies, mediums and entities that resisted where the consumer wanted to go."

Are you a psychical gamer, or is it download only for you now? Let us know using the comments below.