PC is still developers' favorite gaming platform, and its lead is growing

PC remains the most popular gaming platform among developers, and its lead over consoles and mobile is growing, according to a Game Developers Conference survey of nearly 4,000 developers. 

The State of the Game Industry 2019 report found that 56% of respondents had released their last game on PC, the first time the figure has topped 50%. Smartphones/tablets were the next most popular platform at 38%.

When asked what platform they were currently developing games for, two-thirds said PC. 62% of respondents said their next game would release on PC—the highest console was the PlayStation 4 at 32%, and smartphones/tablets were at 35%. "Again we see PC on top and increasing its lead year-over-year, while dev interest in other platforms remains relatively steady," the report said. 

PC was the most-picked platform when respondents were asked which platforms "most interest you as a developer right now", at 60%, ahead of the Nintendo Switch at 45%.

The survey also revealed what developers thought of PC store fronts such as Steam, GOG and the Epic Store. Just 6% of developers agreed that Steam justified the 30% cut it takes from revenue a game makes, while 17% said it "maybe" justified the cut. A further 17% said they didn't know, while 32% said Steam did not justify the revenue cut, which was the largest group of respondents. 27% said it "probably" did not justify the cut. 

However, Steam remained the most popular PC store front, with 47% of PC developers using it to sell their games. Direct sales via a developer's website were next, at 26%, while itch.io, the Humble Store and GOG were each used by less than 20% of respondents. 

The survey included others tidbits on developers' virtual reality preferences, loot boxes and workload, with nearly half of developers saying they work more than 40 hours a week. You can download the full report for free by signing up via email here.

Samuel Horti

Samuel Horti is a long-time freelance writer for PC Gamer based in the UK, who loves RPGs and making long lists of games he'll never have time to play.