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UK games market value plummets

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The UK games market's weekly value has slumped to its lowest level in four years, MCV reports.

According to statistics from GfK Chart-Track, the industry saw a 24% drop compared to the previous week. Unit sales also fell by 21% to 650,382 games sold.

Industry analysts attributed the downturn to a lack of significant releases during the Easter period and the rise of free-to-play social and casual games. Other reasons cited include the general election's impact on consumer confidence and the warmer weather keeping gamers outdoors.

"Essentially it comes down to what is being released," said Chart-Track senior account manager Chris Poole. "Easter was relatively quiet, really, and many people will be holding back for the big titles to come. I also imagine it is a combination of things, such as the weather.

"We're also coming down from the big highs of Modern Warfare 2 and the like, it is understandable the market would hit an eventual low.

"But aside from that, there are no big indicators for the reason behind the fall. Week 16 last year was a lot higher, and there were no major releases that week either."

A lack of new console hardware has also been blamed.

The lowest point for the UK market in recent years came during in the summer of 2006, when the Xbox 360 was the only new system on offer.

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