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One third of Brits are gamers

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Blame Farmville, blame iPhone apps, blame mini-shockwave games, but we are all gamers now. Or to be a precise, a third of us - those British men (34 per cent) and women (31 per cent) who say they are gamers.

This is the finding of the 2010 survey into European gaming attitudes, compiled by the ISFE and ELSPA, two trade bodies.

Their report notes the rise of the new gamer attracted to a more accessible gaming world, which is redressing the traditionally skewed male / female demographic.

Unsurprisingly, this "new gamer is steering away from the traditional shoot-em-up genre, preferring to challenge their cerebral cortex rather than their hand-eye co-ordination.  A whopping 65 per cent of gamers play puzzle games online, with only 18 per cent enjoying a more conventional online multiplayer game."

British women appear to be particularly enthusiastic about playing games - across Europe as a whole, only one in five women describe themselves as gamers.

The young. Let's not forget the young. Some 74 per cent of 16-19 year olds define themselves and gamers and 60 per cent of 20-24 year olds.

ELSPA also notes the rise of the "bedroom delveoper" who create mini games and upload them on to the internet "simply for the love of it". Fifty-five per cent of UK gamers play Shockwave / flash-/ browser- based games.

As you might expect with this new breed of gamer, the PC is the most popular console with 33 per cent of gamers using this, ahead of the Wii and the Xbox 360, with 36 per cent combined.

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