PC Gaming Booming In Japan; Local Devs Made 20% Of Total Steam’s Top Sales This Year

Capcom believes that PC gaming is as prevalent as console gaming in the region.

Story Highlights

  • The keynote at the Tokyo Game Show 2023 revealed that Japanese devs make up about 20% of Steam’s top sales in 2023.
  • 40% of PC gamers make up the Elden Ring and Armored Core 6 player base, while the rest is on other devices. The amount dials down to 30% for Tekken. 
  • Steam Deck has played a massive role in introducing PC gaming to a different Japanese audience.

Japan is among one of the largest non-Western front faces of the gaming industry. While Japan was mostly towered by console gaming in the past, the last decade has seen an insane insurgence of PC gaming. As reported by Famitsu, the latest keynote at the Tokyo Game Show 2023 reveals some of the new milestones hit by the Japanese PC industry — such as Japanese devs making up about 20% of Steam’s top sales in 2023.

The event was filled with influential figures from Valve’s Pierre-Loup Griffais, the Steam Platform Engineering Team, and Erik Peterson, the Steam Business Team. Capcom USA’s William Yagi-Bacon, the Senior Vice President, and Bandai Namco Studio’s Katsuhiro Harada, the Chief Producer / Executive Game Director, also made an appearance. Valve announced that one of the top five selling games from Steam is from Japan.

The hour-long keynote was scattered with prominent info and discussions by various figures. For instance, we learn that 40% of PC gamers make up Elden Ring and Armored Core 6 player base, while the rest is on other devices. For titles more popular on consoles, like Tekken, the amount dials down only to 30%. Capcom alleged that digital sales are growing in the region despite still being heavily influenced by retail gaming.

Capcom wants to continue selling physical copies in the region because of its importance in the PC market. It also clarified that the pandemic was a huge juncture for the PC industry in the local region to grow to new horizons. The company states that the battle hub feature in SF6 was quite popular, and the cross-platform feature is now more important than ever. We could likely see more cross-platform features in its next titles.

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Valve, on the other hand, has noticed the dormant potential lying in Japan. It wants to meet up with devs and publishers to discuss their needs. The company also pointed out that Steam Deck has played a massive role in introducing PC gaming to a different Japanese audience; new stocks of the handheld will arrive soon in stores. Valve has great expectations from the PC market and wants to continue deepening its fangs into Japan.

The TGS 2023 reveals that many Japanese players buy the base games at a discount but eventually purchase the DLCs for the full price. Language localization has also become quite important for the Japanese PC market. Bandai may look into utilizing AI to fulfill its language localization needs in the future.

Valve previously stated that Japan has the biggest growth rate for PC gaming, which is quite a massive milestone. As per a report last year, the PC gaming industry size in Japan has expanded twice in the last three years.

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Shahmeer Sarfaraz

Shameer Sarfaraz is a Senior News Writer on eXputer who loves to devoutly keep up with the gaming and entertainment industries. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science and several years of experience reporting on games. Besides his passion for breaking news stories, Shahmeer loves spending his leisure time farming away in Stardew Valley. His articles have been cited by VGC, IGN, GameSpot, Game Rant, TheGamer, GamingBolt, The Verge, NME, Metro, Dot Esports, GameByte, Kotaku Australia, PC Gamer, and more. Experience: 4+ Years || Education: Bachelor's in Computer Science || Written 800+ News Stories.

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