Thursday, February 23, 2012

Gaming in Brazil: A Brief Analysis.

This is not based on data acquired on long researches or some kind of study about the gaming habits in my country. This is based on observation of Brazilian gamers comments in forums, the buying habits observed in stores and general news I see on Brazilian gaming sites.

First, we are probably one of the countries who most pirate games. You can go to any popular shopping districts and find several 'camel├┤s' (street vendors) selling pirated games. Since most Brazilians are poor, many resort to buying games this way. It is very hard to argue when you can buy three games for R$10 (roughly USS=$6) when a legitimate copy can go up to r$200(US$120) about which is the better deal.

That made the PS2 the most popular console around here, and the 360 the most popular between the current gen consoles. Of course, this means that on-line play is not as popular as in US. This also made many gamers becoming eclectic gamers. Since it is 'cheap' to acquire games illegally, many gamers buy many games by its cover alone.

On the legal side, the PS3 is the most popular console. You can go to any store selling legit games and find way more PS3 games than the 360. Probably this is both a reflex of the fact that most 360 owners have unlocked their consoles to run pirate games and the fact that, after doing this, you have voided the warranty. With the first 360s prone to failure, having a console without warranty seems to not be a good thing. Specially when the cheapest console is R$800 (US$470).

The reason why consoles and games are so expensive is because Brazilian law classify game consoles as gambling machines and they have bigger taxes than computers. Apparently, our Congress will try to change this law this year, so hopefully original products will become cheaper. hardly enough to combat piracy, but enough to make people who already buy original games buying more.

The favorite genres in Brazil are soccer, racing and shooters, with fighting games in a minor scale. That happens because most people doesn't have a good enough knowledge of English to play any game where understand the story is crucial to advance to the next phase. Some gamers, with better understanding of English and that are anime fans (quite a big amount of Brazilians are) will also play JRPGs and RPGs.

Well, that is it. Hope you liked to know a bit more about my country's gaming habits. Feel free to ask me any questions!

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