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Gen Z Prefers Video Games to Watching TV and Movies, Study Says

Gamer at gaming PC

In a world full of entertainment options, not all are created equal. 

Gen Zs specifically (those currently aged 14-24) would pass the remote in favour of a gaming console, according to recent findings. For them, traditional media such as TV shows and movies simply aren’t as entertaining as gaming. 

Related: Video games can help mental health, study says.

In fact, TV and movies ranked in the last spot among five top entertainment options for this younger generation.

Writing and storylines in single-player games these days are on-par with the writing and storylines of a good movie

According to Deloitte’s 2021 Digital Media Trends survey, just over a quarter of the respondents (26 per cent) said they prefer video games as their top entertainment activity, while 87 per cent said they game weekly. 

One potential reason is that the gaming industry has gotten to a point where the graphics are not only hyper-realistic, but the writing in many games is also very, very good.

“Gamers basically have the option to control outcomes in that story and writing and storylines in single-player games these days are on-par with the writing and storylines of a good movie,” says Andreas Berganza, a 17-year-old living in Toronto. 

Colourfully-lit keyboard

Related: Best video games to forget your day with.

For this generation, gaming was followed by listening to music (14 per cent), browsing the internet (12 per cent) and engaging on social media (11 per cent). 

In fact, only 10 per cent of Gen Zers said that watching TV or movies was their favourite way to be entertained. 

Perhaps unsurprisingly, for every other age group, traditional media remained in the top spot including for millennials (18 per cent), Gen Xers (29 per cent) and boomers (39 per cent). 

Gaming not only allows players to go from passive consumer to active participant, they also provide a point of connection across distance and between friends. 

The popularity of gaming during COVID-19 has surged, as people socially distance and remain indoors. The majority of Gen Z, millenials and Gen Xers said that games have helped them stay connected to others during difficult times. 


Related: Here’s what’s happening with GameStop Stock and why it matters.

“Many games are available online, making them easy to play with a group of friends,” adds Berganza.  

While the assumption was that as millennials age up, they would adopt media consumption behaviours more similar to prior generations, this didn’t happen. Similarly, the implication here too is that Gen Zers will similarly retain their unique entertainment habits, with major implications for the future of entertainment.

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