The Western market for MMO games will be worth USD 1.5 billion by 2011, with Europe set to benefit the most from a booming market, according to new research from Screen Digest.
Over the next five years, Germany will see the largest growth in subscriptions, followed by the UK.
The market for massively multiplayer online games in the West broke the USD 1 billion milestone in 2006, according to the research firm.
The company found that subscriptions in the North American market were worth USD 576 million, while European subscriptions reached USD 299 million.
The research also notes that as well as subscriptions, social networking and casual gaming sites are bringing in more revenue for the MMO market, as they begin to adopt practices found in MMO gaming business models.
"During the past few years the western landscape for MMO games has become increasingly fragmented following the introduction of new genres of games including social networking, virtual pet rearing and virtual world building titles," said Piers Harding-Rolls, author of the Screen Digest report.
"These new games and platforms have bought with them many new gamers and also new business models that are generating revenue that is largely incremental to the incumbent subscription business."