Considering the PC gaming industry started out the year with 10 million World of Warcraft subscribers under its belt, is anyone shocked to find out that the PC has been called the "most lucrative platform" of 2008? In a study paid for by the PC Gaming Alliance -- a "non-profit industry alliance" made up of members of various companies, including Activision and Microsoft -- PC gaming in 2008 apparently brought in over $11 billion in revenue.

The study itself was conducted by DFC Intelligence, a market research company specializing in the game industry, and reached some interesting conclusions. According to the study, expanded broadband penetration and adoption of digital download services (like Steam by Valve) lead the way for the PC gaming market's growth in 2008, as well as "the growing presence of game cards at major retailers like 7-Eleven." Unsurprisingly, the study also found that MMOGs are "the leading products for both revenue and profits," citing WoW as 9% (or $1 billion) of the entire PC gaming market's revenues last year.

We'll take this report, compounded by the NPD report that retails sales of PC games in 2008 dropped by 14 percent, as solid evidence that PC gamers are the first to take major steps towards exclusively downloadable games.

[Via Edge]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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