GWS 2022: Remote gaming, a flash in the pan?

By Jon Freitag

The Great Wargaming Survey, 2021 edition, included two questions on remote gaming for the first time. In examining the survey results (see: Remote Gaming), I concluded that remote gaming seemed more mainstream than I thought. With a 39% participation rate, initial response was encouraging for a continuation of this gaming model.

Given that the 2021 survey still saw much of the world in either lockdown or under restrictions, I wondered if the 2021 participation rate might prove to have been optimistic in the long run as the world opened back up and Face-to-Face (F2F) gaming would return. Also considered was whether or not remote gaming represented a transitory means of gaming. Would remote gaming fade quickly after F2F restrictions were lifted? Would remote gaming quickly be shuffled off into the dust bin of history once the world returned to normal? I had a year to ponder such questions while I awaited results from the 2022 survey.

Let us turn to the results from the 2022 survey to look for answers to these questions.

Participation rate

The 10,872 survey responses captured in 2022 showed a drop in participation from the 11,172 in 2021. Of these, 478 respondents failed to answer the question on remote gaming participation, so the usable total count dropped to 10,414. Of this total, 27% answered that they tried remote gaming in 2022. This percentage was down significantly from the 39% who responded in the affirmative in 2021.


With a drop of remote participation rate from 39% to 27%, does the survey suggest that continuation of remote gaming will wane as well? Of the 27% of respondents admitting to remote gaming in 2022, how many wargamers plan to continue gaming remotely? If a quickly fading fad then, perhaps, continuation would see an equally dramatic drop-off in expectations. The data suggests otherwise.

Surprisingly, the data shows that only 6.5% of respondents who tried remote gaming in 2022 have no plans to continue remote gaming in 2023. This percentage is down from the 10% of 2021 respondents who answered that they would not continue remote gaming in 2022. So, 93.5% of respondents trying remote gaming in 2022 plan to continue gaming remotely in 2023. 

While there may have been a segment of this market that tried remote gaming in 2021 and did not return in 2022 (39% participation rate v 27% participation rate), can one infer from the decrease in percentage of those not planning to continue that a cadre of remote gaming is solidifying? I suppose time will tell, but those wargamers sticking with it seem more likely to continue.

I plan to revisit the remote gaming topic to examine the relationship between gaming frequency and remote gaming. From my own experience, gaming frequency continues at a brisk pace since my discovery of remote gaming more than two years ago. I know others find themselves in similar situations. As others did for me, I introduced more wargamers to remote gaming who in turn are introducing even more gamers. For me, this is a growing and rewarding facet of the hobby as my wargaming universe expands.

I end with a few questions to ponder:

  • Does remote gaming represent a Big Bang in gaming expansion as more gamers are added into the universe, or is it simply a flash in the pan that will fizzle out over time as F2F gaming returns? 
  • Have you tried remote gaming and plan to continue? If not, why not?
  • Does remote gaming add value to your wargaming hobby?

As always, I'm very interested to read about your experiences and evaluations of remote gaming. 

Until next time.

1 comment

Wargaming is primarily a social interaction There is an important tactile element – the heft of figures, the roll of the dice the, sharing of libations with friends – lost thru a screen

Steven Jones

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