ECTS: Wrinklies outstrip 20-somethings in online gaming

Play games online? Your opponents may be a little older than you think...

A study commissioned by Intel has revealed that Britain's more "mature" gameplayers are tearing a strip off their grandchildren when it comes to online game-play.

The survey carried out by NOP Research in August, questioned around 1000 gamers aged 15+ and showed that older PC users are more likely to have played online games than any other age group, including the 15-24 gamer hardcore.

Twenty-eight percent of those aged 65 and over who play PC games have played over the Internet, compared to just 22 percent of 20-somethings, and a mere 17 percent of 30-odds, according to the report. "As PCs become more powerful, the boundaries of what is possible are pushed back, bringing more exciting experiences to people of all ages," said Intel's North European director, Dave Hazell.

Hazell admitted the results were unexpected: "We were very surprised to see the high number of older PC owners enjoying online gaming compared to the younger generation."

Sadly the attraction of Lara Croft and her cyber-babe friends is lost on the older games player, with Joanna Lumley and Tom Cruise far more their cup of tea.

It is thought that the shoot-'em-up pensioners play PC games in order to improve their general concentration. Thirty-eight percent of respondents in that age group agreed. One third of over 65s said they played fairly or very often -- a massive jump from the 55-64 bracket, of which only nine percent owned up.

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