Diablo III and Max Payne 3 made for a tough act to follow last May, and unfortunately May 2013's industry performance just couldn't rise to the occasion. According to the NPD Group, total U.S. industry sales last month plummeted 25 percent year-on-year on account of fewer new console releases, which "on a per-SKU basis" sold 70 percent fewer units compared to May 2012's titles. Even May 2013's software top ten represented a lower percentage of overall sales at U.S. retail compared to May 2012 (18 percent of unit sales and 25 percent of overall dollars).
On the other hand, unit sales for handheld titles actually increased 60 percent year-on-year with no less than three 3DS titles making the software top ten (two of which were first-party exclusives). That's compared to May 2012 were 3DS software didn't even place at all. Indeed, Nintendo earlier today boasted that the 3DS proved to the be best-selling gaming platform last month in the U.S. based on NPD's findings. NPD analyst Liam Callahan acknowledged that the 3DS overtook Microsoft's Xbox 360 as top-selling platform "across hardware and portables", but noted that the 360 still achieved higher hardware unit sales.
Despite an enormous year-on-year reduction in monthly unit sales from 270,000 to 114,000 consoles, the Xbox 360 was still top selling console hardware last month. That means the good ol' 360 is on 29 consecutive months as the best-selling console in the U.S. NPD notes however that Nintendo's 3DS enjoyed the best "year-on-year trending" for hardware, by virtue of the fact that its unit sales remained flat.
On the bright side, Injustice: Gods Among Us remained a top seller in the U.S. after achieving the same status back in April, and Dead Island: Riptide becomes zombi-fied itself by remaining in the top five. It's joined by the equally long living Black Ops II, as well as newcomer Donkey Kong Counter Returns 3D. Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon would be the other 3DS exclusive on the NPD's software top ten. Metro: Last Light was the only other new May release to land on the chart, with the rest comfortably occupied by mainstays from previous months.
May 2013 US Games Industry Summary
Total Industry Sales - $386.3 million USD (-25%)
Console Hardware Sales - $96.0 million USD (-31%)
Console Software Sales - $175.1 million USD (-31%)
Total Software Sales - $187.6 million USD (-44%)
Accessory Sales - $115.3 million USD (-6%)
|1.||Injustice: Gods Among Us||Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii U||04/2013|
|2.||Call of Duty: Black Ops II||Activision||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii U / PC||11/2012|
|3.||Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D||Nintendo||3DS||05/2013|
|4.||Dead Island: Riptide||Deep Silver||PS3 / Xbox 360 / PC||04/2013|
|5.||Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon||Nintendo||3DS||03/2013|
|6.||Metro: Last Light||Deep Silver||PS3 / Xbox 360 / PC||05/2013|
|7.||NBA 2K13||Take-Two Interactive||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii U / Wii / PSP / PC||10/2012|
|8.||BioShock Infinite||Take-Two Interactive||PS3 / Xbox 360 / PC||03/2013|
|9.||Battlefield 3||Electronic Arts||PS3 / Xbox 360 / PC||10/2011|
|9.||LEGO Batman 2||Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii U / Wii / PSV / 3DS / DS / PC||06/2012|