In January, US game spending increased 42% year-over-year to $4.71 billion, an all-time high, according to the industry tracking NPD Group. Meanwhile, spending on hardware increased 144% year-over-year to $319 million thanks to the launch of next-gen consoles and the growing popularity of the Nintendo Switch.
The Nintendo Switch, released worldwide on March 3, 2017, was the best-selling console, though the more expensive PS5 netted more revenue. The Switch’s unit sales were the highest since the Wii in 2010, while the PS5’s total revenue was the largest since the Wii in 2009. In addition, spending across console, mobile, PC, cloud, and subscription services increased 36% to $4.17 billion.
The game sales charts remained essentially the same with Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War at the top of the charts for the third straight month. Although it launched worldwide on November 13, 2020, for Microsoft Windows, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S, the title is already the twentieth best-selling game in history.
Meanwhile, Cyberpunk 2077, which suffered from performance issues and was removed from the PlayStation Store on December 17, 2020, dropped from the No. 2 to the No. 18 spot on the sales chart. Half of December’s top 10 bestsellers continued to improve on their chart ranking. Finally, the accessories segment, which includes the bestselling PS5 DualSense pads, saw a 73% increase in spending to $222 million.
The US Top 20 from January 3 to January 30, 2021, is as follows:
- Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War
- Assassin’s Creed Valhalla
- Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales
- Madden NFL 21
- Animal Crossing: New Horizons*
- Mario Kart 8: Deluxe*
- Ring Fit Adventure
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
- Super Smash Bros. Ultimate*
- NBA 2K21*
- Super Mario 3D All-Stars*
- FIFA 21
- Immortals: Fenyx Rising
- Mortal Kombat 11
- Just Dance 2021
- The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild*
- Minecraft: PlayStation 4 Edition
- Cyberpunk 2077*
- Super Mario Party*
- UFC 4
*Digital sales not included
NPD tracks physical sales at retailers, but it also gets digital data directly from publishers. But not every company participates. For example, Nintendo doesn’t share its first-party sales, and Activision Blizzard does not provide its Battle.net sales.
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