December has come and gone, and with it another calendar year of gaming. The NPD Group posts its latest monthly sales report for both the last month of 2010, as well as a general look at the state of the gaming industry as it was throughout the past year. NPD's Anita Frazier explains that software sales growth for the industry was pretty much flat at best, at worst down by 1 percent compared to its performance in 2009. The retail industry meanwhile was down six percent year-on-year!
December itself didn't fare much better, suffering year-on-year declines in all areas except accessories. Just as Xbox Live's Major Nelson predicted, the Xbox 360 wasn't the best-selling console hardware for December, as the crown as was once again claimed by the Nintendo DS. According to Frazier, the DS install base has now surpassed that of the PS2 at 47 million units sold lifetime-to-date in the U.S. alone.
The Major was also correct when he believed the Xbox 360 would post impressive monthly sales regardless, as NPD confirms December 2010 the best month ever for Xbox 360 hardware sales. What's more, the Xbox 360 was the only console platform to enjoy a year-on-year increase in unit sales over 2009.
Call of Duty: Black Ops continued to flex its muscle at retail, taking top honors as the best selling game not only for December, but for the whole of 2010 as well. Unit sales for the title have now reached over 12 million across all platforms since launch, twice as many copies as the second best-selling game of 2010, Madden NFL 11. That's what it takes to be a winner when you've got a franchise like Call of Duty. December's software top ten also includes newer titles like WoW: Cataclysm, Disney Epic Mickey, and Michael Jackson The Experience.
December 2010 US Games Industry Summary
Total Sales - $5.06 billion USD (-9%)
Hardware Sales - $1.84 billion USD (-16%)
Console Software Sales - $2.37 billion USD (-8%)
Total Software Sales - $2.53 billion USD (-5%)
Accessory Sales - $853.2 million USD (+10%)
|1.||Call of Duty: Black Ops||Activision||PS3 / Xbox 360 / PC / Wii / DS||11/2010|
|2.||Just Dance 2||Ubisoft||Wii||10/2010|
|3.||World of Warcraft: Cataclysm||Activision Blizzard||PC||12/2010|
|4.||Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood||Ubisoft||PS3 / Xbox 360||11/2010|
|5.||Donkey Kong Country Returns||Nintendo||Wii||11/2010|
|6.||Disney Epic Mickey||Disney Interactive Studios||Wii||11/2010|
|7.||Madden NFL 11||Electronic Arts||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii / PSP||08/2010|
|8.||Michael Jackson The Experience||Ubisoft||Wii / DS / PSP||11/2010|
|9.||NBA 2K11||2K Sports||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii / DS / PS2 / PSP||10/2010|
|10.||Need for Speed Hot Pursuit||Electronic Arts||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii / PC||11/2010|
Titles that have since fallen off the monthly software top ten charts make their comeback in the list of bestsellers for 2010 overall, including Halo: Reach, New Super Mario Bros. Wii, Red Dead Redemption and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. The Wii and Xbox 360 platforms proved to be the most successful for physical software sales throughout 2010.
2010 Overall US Games Industry Summary
Total Sales - $18.58 billion USD (-6%)
Hardware Sales - $6.29 billion USD (-13%)
Console Software Sales - $9.36 billion USD (-6%)
Total Software Sales - $10.06 billion USD (-5%)
Accessory Sales - $2.93 billion USD (+13%)
| 1. ||Call of Duty: Black Ops||Activision||PS3 / Xbox 360 / PC / Wii / DS||11/2010|
| 2. ||Madden NFL 11||Electronic Arts||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii / PSP||08/2010|
| 3. ||Halo: Reach||Microsoft||Xbox 360||09/2010|
| 4. ||New Super Mario Bros. Wii||Nintendo||Wii||11/2009|
| 5. ||Red Dead Redemption||Rockstar Games||PS3 / Xbox 360||05/2010|
| 6. ||Wii Fit Plus||Nintendo||Wii||10/2009|
| 7. ||Just Dance 2||Ubisoft||Wii||10/2010|
| 8. ||Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2||Activision||PS3 / Xbox 360 / PC||11/2009|
| 9. ||Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood||Ubisoft||PS3 / Xbox 360||11/2010|
| 10. ||NBA 2K11||2K Sports||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii / DS / PS2 / PSP||10/2010|