217 million people worldwide play online games, according to figures from comScore. That's approximately the population of Malaysia or Peru.
The study apparently took into account all sites that provide "online or downloadable games" but excluded gambling sites. The 217million users account for 28 percent of all people online.
Yahoo! Games led the pack, attracting 53 million unique visitors. The fastest-growing Top 10 gaming property was the WildTangent Network. Okay, not the sort of thing I'm involved in but still an interesting static.
The report appears to count visits to the actual gaming sites as opposed to actual user numbers. Under this methodology, online worldslike SL and WoW attract a smaller share of the market as many users would not regularly visit a central page (such as with Yahoo Games) but play directly via a desktop client. Notably though, traffic to secondlife.com is surprisingly close to the visitor numbers for worldofwarcraft.com.
Not that that will stop my hack and slash mates from thinking they have the moral high ground.