Despite the trials and tribulations the title has faced since launch, Diablo III still ended up as the shining beacon what proved to be yet another poor month for the North American gaming industry in terms of sales. NPD Group's monthly sales teardown confirms a 28 percent year-on-year decline in overall industry sales for the month of May. However, NPD analyst Anita Frazier notes that new titles released last month actually generated 31 percent more revenue compared to May 2011, thanks in no small part to titles like Diablo III.
Microsoft's Xbox 360 once again succeeded in being the top-selling hardware last month with sales of 160,000 units, marking May as the fifteenth consecutive month where the platform dominated. Meanwhile, NPD confirms that Nintendo's 3DS proved to be the only platform to enjoy an actual year-on-year increase in unit sales thus far.
On the bright side, Diablo III's chart topping performance represents a fine return to form for PC gaming, which hasn't seen an exclusive title claim a monthly industry sales crown since StarCraft II launched back in July 2010. NPD's software top five was largely populated by all-new titles for the month of May, including Rockstar's Max Payne 3 as the runner-up despite reportedly selling less than 50 percent of what L.A. Noire did back in May 2011. Even April 2012's best-seller, Prototype 2, remained strong with a handsome fourth-place finish.
Another pleasant surprise was Dragon's Dogma landing in ninth place overall. Capcom's grimdark fantasy themed action adventure amounted to just 92,000 units in sales last month, but NPD's results only tallied five days worth of sales for the title given its release date.
May 2012 US Games Industry Summary
Total Industry Sales - $516.5 million USD (-28%)
Console Hardware Sales - $138.9 million USD (-39%)
Console Software Sales - $255.4 million USD (-32%)
Total Software Sales - $335.2 million USD (-16%)
Accessory Sales - $122.3 million USD (+7%)
|1.||Diablo III||Activision Blizzard||PC||05/2012|
|2.||Max Payne 3||Rockstar Games||PS3 / Xbox 360 / PC||05/2012|
|3.||Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier||Ubisoft||PS3 / Xbox 360||05/2012|
|4.||Prototype 2||Activision||PS3 / Xbox 360||04/2012|
|5.||NBA 2K12||2K Sports||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii / PC / PSP / PS2||10/2011|
|6.||Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3||Activision||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii / PC||11/2011|
|7.||Sniper Elite V2||505 Games||PS3 / Xbox 360 / PC||05/2012|
|8.||Battlefield 3||Electronic Arts||PS3 / Xbox 360 / PC||10/2011|
|9.||Dragon's Dogma||Capcom||PS3 / Xbox 360||05/2012|
|10.||Just Dance 3||Ubisoft||PS3 / Xbox 360 / Wii||10/2011|