×

Videogame Sales Show Signs of Life Heading into Peak Holiday Season

Software sales up 21%; hardware down 40% in August; EA's 'Madden NFL 25' was the top selling title

In a year in which the videogame industry has experienced mostly declining sales, the biz has pinned its hopes on the release of next-gen consoles from Microsoft and Sony to boost the bottom line.

That’s starting to happen sooner than expected, as several tentpole titles helped turn around the software side of the sector in August.

In fact, retail-based sales of new games experienced their first positive month, up 21%, since November 2011, to $305 million. Eight of the top 10 titles were launched in August, a positive sign for publishers as a large number of high-profile games are set to roll out this fall.

Software sales are expected to increase more than 30% in September and higher in October, according to analyst Cowen & Co.

Collectively, August launches made up 58% of overall dollar sales for the month and 41% of units sales, NPD said. Compare that to 24% of dollar sales and 15% of unit sales in August 2012.

Electronic Arts’ “Madden NFL 25,” Deep Silver’s “Saints Row IV,” Disney’s “Disney Infinity,” Ubisoft’s “Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Blacklist” and Microsoft’s “Minecraft,” for the Xbox 360, were the top five-selling titles in August. NPD does not break out sales data for games. Sales of EA’s latest “Madden” is down versus last year.

SEE ALSO: ‘Disney Infinity’ Game an Early Hit for Disney Interactive

New games, hardware and accessories account for roughly 50% of total consumer spending on games, NPD said. The rest comes from used game sales and rentals ($178 million), mobile, social and other digital game transactions ($528 million).

The results helped boost retail sales (including hardware and accessories) by 1% to $521 million. When including all digital platforms, that increased to $1.2 billion in August in the U.S.

Given the toys needed to play “Disney Infinity,” the game also helped lift sales in the accessories category by 7% to $136.7 million, which has long benefitted from Activision’s “Skylander’s” franchise. Combined with sales of “Skylanders” accessories, one in every three accessory sold this month was an interactive gaming toy, NPD said.

As expected, consumers are holding off on buying consoles like Microsoft’s Xbox 360, Sony PlayStation 3 and the Nintendo Wii U as they await the new devices to hit retail shelves in November.

Because of that, hardware sales fell 40% in August to $90.8 million.

Nintendo’s 3DS continued to outsell other hardware platforms for the fourth month straight. The Xbox 360 was the top selling console for the month for a 32nd month in a row.

More Biz

  • Lenny Bruce (1925-1966) social critic and

    Paul Krassner Recalls Lenny Bruce, Cavalier Magazine 50 Years Later

    Men’s magazine Cavalier was launched by Fawcett Publications in 1952 (motto: “For the American Male”). It was published the year before Playboy, to which it has often been compared. Imagine that this was a bastion of cutting-edge comic literature. Back in the day, Cavalier tried to be seen as slightly hipper, more youthful and considered [...]

  • LiveXLive Names AOL and MTV Vet

    LiveXLive Names AOL and MTV Vet Dermot McCormack President

    Live entertainment digital media company LiveXLive Media today announced that AOL and MTV veteran Dermot McCormack has been named president of the company. According to the announcement, McCormack will lead the business and creative operations of LiveXLive, effective immediately. McCormack previously served as AOL’s Global President of Video and Studios, where he oversaw the video [...]

  • R Kelly Sexual Assult Accusations Mugshot

    R. Kelly Ordered Held Without Bail

    R. Kelly has been ordered held without bond at a hearing Tuesday in federal court in Chicago, according to the Chicago Sun Times. The singer entered a not-guilty plea. The hearing, which follows the singer being hit Friday with a total of 18 counts of serious sexual misconduct and other charges in Chicago and New York, [...]

  • Woodstock co-producer and co-founder, Michael Lang,

    Woodstock 50 Organizers Are Optimistic but Vague Before Town Meeting

    Woodstock organizers Michael Lang and Richard Peck were optimistic but vague when speaking with reporters at a hastily announced open house for the festival held in Vernon, New York on Monday night. The town’s Vernon Downs is the most recent proposed site for the trouble festival, which has been dogged by financial and organizational problems [...]

  • What Is Equity, Roc Nation’s Indie

    What Is Equity, Roc Nation’s Indie Distribution Company?

    When news broke earlier this year that Jaz-O, Jay-Z’s longtime friend-turned-foe-turned-friend-again from Marcy Projects, had signed with Roc Nation, most reports glossed over exactly which company the rapper had signed with. His deal, for his Kingz Kounty Media Group, is actually with Equity Distribution, the independent distribution arm of the Roc Nation family of companies, [...]

  • Andhadhun

    Booming Digital Lifts Eros Indian Film Distribution Giant

    Eros International, India’s largest and most controversial film distributor, says that its digital revenues now outstrip conventional theatrical and syndication revenues. Its Eros Now streaming platform claims 18.8 million paying subscribers. The New York-listed company reported annual results that were distorted by multiple adjustments to presentation. Reported revenues in the year to end of March [...]

  • The dark Manhatten skyline, seen from

    StubHub Refunds $500,000 to Customers Shut Out by New York Blackout

    Saturday’s blackout in New York had an outsized effect on the city’s nightlife, with Madison Square Garden and the entire Broadway district seeing multiple shows cancelled due to the the power outage. As a result, StubHub has refunded more than $500,000 worth of tickets for cancelled events. According to a statement from the company, the StubHub [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content