The"casual games" sector, an industry generating a serious $2.25 billion per year, according to the Casual Games Association, is growing annually at 20 percent. That's a healthy growth figure,
especially when you consider that some 200 million people already play casual games. The nascent sector has also proved to be a great way for advertisers to reach everyone, as the ratio of men to
women is a nearly even 48.3 to 51.7 percent.
Compared to the hardcore or "enthusiast" gaming sector, which consists of console gaming and massively multiplayer games like World of
Warcraft, casual gaming's $2.25 billion is a mere pittance: enthusiasts generate up to $20 billion per year with far smaller audiences.
So why isn't casual gaming being monetized better? Part of the problem could be a lack of consolidation. There are scores of gaming portals out there--many containing the same games--so the giants of the casual gaming sector, Yahoo, Microsoft and AOL, would do well to scoop up the myriad small and mid-size players.