Overall sales across the entire games industry has been slowly declining throughout 2012, but game companies everywhere remain hopeful that the predicted strong holiday season will propel them to end the year on a high note.
NBA 2k13 was the best selling game of the month, pulling a surprise victory over bigger budget action titles like Resident Evil 6 (which finished second,) and Medal of Honor: Warfighter, which, despite universally negative reviews, managed to land in the eight spot on the NPD charts. NBA 2k13’s success is no doubt due in part to it’s current monopoly over basketball games: EA once again failed to deliver a new hoops game this year, and 2k is enjoying the spoils of EA’s forfeit.
Unsurprisingly, Nintendo’s latest Pokemon also managed strong sales, as Pokemon: Black Version 2 and White Version 2 sold enough to secure the third and fifth place spot respectively. The games were so popular they even managed to generate a spike in sales for DS and 3DS hardware.
Still, despite the strong sales of a few stand-out titles, overall sales for the entire industry were down twenty-five percent when compared to last year. While RE6 and Medal of Honor sold well enough to chart, both Capcom and EA stated that both titles have sold slightly less units than what they were hoping for, and have revised their sales forecasts as a result. It’s been well documented that reviews don’t really have an big impact on sales of big budget, blockbuster titles, but it’s worth noting that both RE6 and MoH were met with a somewhat negative reception upon their release.
The full list is as follows:
- NBA 2K13
- Resident Evil 6
- Pokémon Black Version 2
- Pokémon White Version 2
- Madden NFL 13
- FIFA Soccer 13
- Medal of Honor: Warfighter
- Borderlands 2
- Skylander Giants
In terms of hardware sales, the Xbox 360 was once again the best selling console of the month. While Microsoft won in terms of total units sold, everybody has something to be happy about, as the 360, PS3, and 3DS all enjoyed increased sales when compared to last month. Analysts are hopeful that this trend will continue into the holiday season.
November is expected to be a big month for sales: while Assassin’s Creed 3 technically came out at the end of October, we won’t see it’s presence on the NPD charts until they release their November list (Ubisoft has already announced that AC3 has sold over 3 million copies.) Despite AC3’s already blockbuster performance, I don’t think it’s unwise to guess that Halo 4 will probably snag the number one spot next month — the game has received unanimously glowing reviews, and it’s already projected to be the best selling game of the year.
In addition to that, November marks the launch of Nintendo’s new Wii U console. I wouldn’t expect any of the Wii U launch titles to chart very high due to a new console’s small installed base, but if the system’s strong pre-orders are any indication, the Wii U might just end up being the must-have item of the holiday season. Whatever happens, November is sure to be an interesting month in terms of sales, so check back in 4 weeks to see how it turned out.