Hungary Magazine

Gaming industry on the rise in Hungary

The popularity of video games has been increasing in recent years. The exponential growth of the smartphone market and the easy availability of internet have made it possible and now, the number of players engaging in video games is booming. While the United States has been a big gaming market for some time, some European countries, like Hungary, have also witnessed impressive growth.

According to Statista, the total revenue of video games in the Central European nation is estimated to be $69 million with more than 2.4 million users, and the market is expected to reach $79 million in the next five years.

Mobile video games in particular have become more popular. In the next five years, the number of mobile gamers is expected to reach 2 million. More and more people are enthusiastic about the current offers and count them among their favorite leisure activities. The legalization of online gambling in 2013 has also opened doors for a new market and the more engagement of people in video games has also built a potential market for eSports in Hungary.

Video games are not just for “nerds”

For many years, video games targeted mostly “nerds” who lacked social lives. However, this cliché has changed in recent years, and the acceptance of the latest technologies has brought games to large parts of society, not just to young people.

With the rise of smartphones, everyone now has the necessary tool right in their hands and, with only a few clicks, players can immerse themselves in the world of games. Year after year, the big developers outdo each other with new creations that they make available to their users. Experts also pinpoint the triumph of video games to this constant availability. And this doesn’t look like it’s about to stop.

Online Gaming and Mobile Gaming in Hungary

The role of Hungary in the video market is not as big as China or the US, but the Central European nation has indeed gained pace in the last few years. Total revenue of mobile games in 2020 is estimated at around $25 million which more than 36% of the total video gaming market in the country. These numbers are expected to rise in the next few years. There are nearly 1.8 million gamers as of now. Since players find easy access to online games, the popularity of mobile gaming has increased.

eSports make it possible

The engagement of people in video games is not limited just to playing as this sector has successfully turned the games into an exciting competition. Many players and fans are active in following the gameplay of others and this has opened the doors for the new market of eSports.

The rise of eSports can also be noted in Hungary. The country witnessed its first eSports in 2018 with V4 Future Sports Festival in Budapest. The prize pool of 500,000 Euro was set and the eight-team participated in the tournament. Other central European countries like Poland, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia were also part of the tournaments in the past two years.

The group stage of the tournament consisted of two round-robin groups of four teams each. All teams played against each other in two consecutive games. V4 Future Sports Festival aims to be among the biggest eSports tournaments worldwide and to include other European countries along with Eastern and Central Europe. The inclusion of Western Europe could also increase the importance of such eSports events.

Online gambling is also becoming popular

While the current gambling laws in Hungary have been in existence since 1991, online gambling was illegal until 2013. The legalization of online casino games like poker, roulette, slots, and online bingo at trusted casino sites has attracted players who love to gamble. The European online gambling market is already booming and Hungary plays a small but very important role here as well.  The market and popularity of brick-and-mortar casinos are still on the rise, but we can expect online casinos will surpass it in the next few years in Hungary.

Gaming industry in Hungary: The bottom line

In a nutshell, we can say that the popularity of gaming is on the rise in Hungary just like in other nations. In the long run, this trend is expected to grow gradually. This industry has the potential to boost the economy of the country by giving more advantages to the potential market of gamers.

We can’t say Hungary would become one of the biggest gaming markets in Europe or the world, but it definitely will change the gaming scene for the domestic players.

Coordinated by Ábel Bede, Kafkadesk's Budapest office is made up of a growing team of freelance journalists, editors and fact-checkers passionate about Hungarian affairs and dedicated to bringing you all the latest news, events and insights from Hungary.