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EghtesadOnline: Most remote-working Iranian game developers have reported a surge in productivity, following the outbreak of the novel coronavirus.

Digital Games Research Center (DIREC), a subsidiary of Iran Computer and Video Games Foundation, has surveyed 59 game developer teams and companies that are among the frontrunners of the sector. 

The foundation has released the results on its website.

A total of 44% of game developers participating in the survey have reported a hike in revenues following the viral outbreak, 36% said their income has remained unchanged while 20% posted a decline. 

Firms participating in the survey have reported that employees’ efficiency has increased by an average of 66% since they started teleworking.

However, 47% of the teams believe their overall performance has declined, 36% recorded no change while 17% reported an overall improvement in performance.

About 63% report that their number of employees has remained unchanged despite the pandemic, while 20% of the firms have hired new members and 17% were forced to retrench employees.

The pandemic has delayed the delivery of projects in 70% of the teams while killing 60% of the projects at others. Some 20% of the teams were reportedly seeking tech solutions for sustaining their activities. 

Surprisingly, 20% of the firms increased salaries to help their employees through the pandemic while encouraging them to increase their performance during the current business slump.

According to the survey, teleworking has observed an 86% hike among the companies and a majority of the firms have asked their employees to work from home. 

Recently, 25% of the companies suspended their activities. 




There are 28 million gamers in Iran, annually generating a revenue of $219 million for the gaming market. 

According to an earlier report released by DIREC, the number of Iranian gamers has seen a staggering 21% jump and reached 28 million by March 2018 compared to earlier data from March 2016 when the number stood at 23 million.

The research defines a gamer as someone who plays digital games at least an hour a week on one of the three common platforms of mobile phone, consoles or computers.

A gender breakdown of the data reveals that out of the 28 million gamers, 65% are men and 35% are women. About 47% of the population play games every single day of the week. 

In the country of 81 million people, the data imply that out of every 100 Iranians, 35 are considered gamers. 

Out of every 100 women, 24 play games on a regular basis while out of every 100 men, 45 are gamers. On average, each Iranian household has one player in the family who spends 90 minutes per day playing games. On average, each Iranian dedicates 31 minutes a day to games.



Popular Games

The mobile strategy videogame Clash of Clans ranked as the most popular game among Iranians, followed by the football game Pro Evolution Soccer and the action-adventure series Grand Auto Theft.

Ranked fourth in the list is the first-person shooter videogame Counter Strike. The fifth place belongs to another sports videogame FIFA, the arch-rival of PES.

The first local game in the list is ranked sixth, the popular word game Baghlava developed by Brain Ladder Game Studio.

Next on the list are the mobile tower rush videogame Clash Royale, the world-renowned shooter game Call of Duty and fun virtual pet game Pou. 

The 10th most widely-played game in Iran is also local, the trivia quiz game known as Quiz of Kings that has turned into a sensation among Iranian youth.

The five most popular game genres are respectively puzzle, platformer/runner, racing/driving, sports and lastly arcade.



Financial Overview

Iranians have spent $125 million on gaming devices and $94 million on the games themselves. 

Mobile games have the largest share of the revenue with $54.64 million followed by console games $22.97 million and computer games $16.45 million.

Earnings from games developed locally stand at $13.26 million, constituting 6% of the total gaming market revenue. The figure stood at 5% in March 2016, indicating that the local gaming business is seeing an uptrend in generating revenue.

Out of the $94 million software market revenue, the local games market share stands at 14%. By the end of March 2015, domestic games had an 11% share.

Only 18% of the players buy games, with the average age of buyers hovering around 18 years. Moreover, 85% of the purchasers are male and only 15% are women.



Age Groups

The results are expected when analyzed age-wise, showing that a majority of gamers (36%) are teenagers between the age of 12 and 19.

Teenagers are followed by children under the age of 12, constituting 31% of players. Those between the age of 20 and 34 account for 26% of the gamer population.

The numbers turn surprisingly interesting as the age of gamers increases. Out of the 28 million gamers, 6% are between the age of 35 and 59.

Finally, 1% of the gamers, translating into 280,000 individuals are 60 years or older, indicating the pervasive popularity of gaming even among the generations not as acquainted with the digital world as millennials.

Overall, the average gamer is 19 years old. Compared to the past results, the average gaming age has dropped by two years, going from 21 in March 2016 to 19 in March 2018.

Iran Game developers productivity Outbreak coronavirus pandemic Teleworking