Gaming has become one of the most popular pastimes both in Ireland and across the rest of the world. Compared to some other major European countries, there haven’t been many studies focused solely on the Celtic nation. We do have some data, however, which suggests that around 36% of Irish people enjoy playing games, at least occasionally, with over three-quarters of those also doing so online.
One study, which was conducted for Pure Telecom, found that more than €536 million is spent in Ireland each year just on online gaming but that there was a significant difference between how much Irish men spent (€278) compared to their female compatriots (€84). This gulf narrows among younger demographics, suggesting that younger generations in the country have broken the old stereotypes that gaming is a male activity.
These gamers are spending more and more on the activity each year too. Another piece of research has forecast that the entire video gaming industry is expected to grow by a compounded annual rate of 9.81% in Ireland between 2023 and 2027, reaching €621.99 million by the end of that period.
Casino games are also expected to keep growing in Ireland. This perhaps shouldn’t be too much of a surprise since the Irish are the third-biggest spenders on wagering per capita in the world, behind only Australia and Singapore. In 2022, revenues (not betting volume) reached €6.26 million and they’re expected to reach almost €10 million by 2027.
Innovation will be a big driver of this growth. Online casinos are already prolific innovators, constantly developing new ideas and features for video slot games such as Gonzo’s Quest, a title that uses a mechanic known as Megaways to vary the size of each reel to create thousands of individual paylines.
In front of this backdrop of continued growth, Dublin is embracing gaming. So, if you find yourself in the Irish capital and fancy indulging your love for this hobby, here are some of the things you can do.
Token is a retro video game arcade paired with a restaurant and bar, making it a one-stop shop for any night out in Dublin. Inside, you’ll be able to enjoy many legendary titles like Pac-Man and Mario Kart among its 40 arcade and pinball machines.
Open Wednesday to Sunday, Token is open for both drop-ins and bookings, and is also great if you want to entertain yourself and a group of your friends with the ultimate retro gaming experience. What’s more, Token is open to over 18s only, so you can be sure you’ll be among sophisticated company.
While Token focuses on retro games, Leisureplex is a traditional entertainment hub that combines ten-pin bowling, pool tables, and awesome arcade games, all under one roof. If that’s not enough, there’s also laser tag, slot games, and air hockey.
While you will find some more retro titles among this vast offering, Leisureplex doesn’t focus specifically on the releases of yesteryear, so you’ll also get to enjoy some more up-to-date games.
Virtual reality gaming is being touted by many as the future of video gaming. However, many of us don’t have enough space at home to enjoy VR games to the fullest. So, instead of risking punching your hand through your TV set while fighting zombies, a better option is to visit somewhere like Dublin’s Quantum VR.
This epic virtual reality arcade is a space-age equivalent of one of the retro arcades you may have visited in decades gone by. Instead of shoving coins into the slot of a gaming cabinet, you slide your head into a VR headset and strap in for the most immersive video gaming experience you’ll ever have.
Quantum VR is Europe’s largest virtual arcade, offering a mix of different titles including Crazy Motorbike, Race Car, Iron Warrior, and Godzilla 9D VR Simulator. These games can cater for up to six players, making it ideal for when you and your mates are visiting the Irish capital.