More than half of Gen Z gamers feel more like themselves in the metaverse than in real life, according to a new study from Publicis Groupe agency Razorfish and Vice Media Group.
According to a survey conducted earlier this year, Gen-Z gamers spend twice as much time hanging out with friends in the metaverse than they do in real life. Per the report, gamers spend 12.2 hours per week playing video games versus 6.6 hours hanging out with friends in-person.
These gamers don’t only view their time in the metaverse as pure escapism, but also as an extension of reality: 52% of Gen-Z gamers say they would like to experience making money in the metaverse, while 33% of them would like to experience building a career there.
The survey found that 20% of Gen-Z gamers’ entertainment/leisure budgets will be earmarked for in-game purchases over the next five years.
The research for the report included three phases. In addition to an online survey of 1,000 Gen-Z gamers across the U.S., Razorfish tracked 12 Gen-Z gamers during 1-hour video gaming experiences, using probes to understand why they chose certain avatars, and how they interact with other players, brands, and the environment. In-depth interviews were also conducted with each gamer to dive deeper into their gaming experience and understand “who they are” when they play.
“Today’s youth are coming into their identities both in real life and in the metaverse, using experiences across both worlds to build confidence and hone their self-expression,” said Nicolas Chidiac, brand strategy lead at Razorfish.
As for brands, he added, it’s important not to view the metaverse as a passing fad but rather as “a paradigm-shifting trend that’s just getting started.”
-- Data privacy is a concern for Gen-Z gamers, but less than for older generations.
-- 47% of those surveyed would like to use the metaverse to meet new people, and 33% would like to use it to build a career.
-- More than three-quarters say their biggest motive for gaming is to relieve stress and anxiety.
-- And 45% said, “I feel like my identity in a game is a truer expression of who I am.”
The full report can be found here.