Port Washington, N.Y. – U.S. video game sales saw their
biggest month ever in December 2009, reaching $5.53 billion, but the
outstanding month was not enough to counter a downward trend this year that saw
total sales come in 8% lower that the record-setting figure reported in 2008,
according to a report from market research firm NPD Group. December sales
increased 4% from a year ago, bolstered by record sales months for the Nintendo
Wii (3.81 million units), DS (3.31 million units) and Sony (NYSE: SNE) PlayStation 3 (1.36
million units) — which just edged out Microsoft’s (NASD: MSFT) Xbox 360 (1.31 million
Game hardware sales were up 16% overall from December 2008, to $2.19
Nintendo also dominated game software sales during December — which
were actually down 7% from 2008, to $2.58 billion — claiming six of the top
ten sales slots, led by its "New Super Mario Bros. Wii" (2.82 million
Activision Blizzard’s (NASD: ATVI) "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2," also
in the top ten, is now the fourth best-selling game of all time.
strong December, overall U.S.
video game sales for 2009 came in at $19.66 billion, 8% below 2008’s record $21.4 billion.
marks just the fourth month of the year where the industry saw an increase over
last year," said NPD analyst Anita Frazier.
"January and February
were both up, and since the decline that began in March, only September
experienced growth. The big sales this month, particularly on the hardware
front, is a positive move for the industry headed into what will hopefully be a
recovery year in 2010."