According to the NPD Group, the US video games industry recorded its biggest December sales period ever, smashing last year’s result by 4 per cent.
Anita Frazier, NPD analyst, said that the strong December sales couldn’t make up for the disappointing year overall.
“The video game industry experienced its biggest sales month ever, besting last December by 4 per cent. It wasn’t enough, though, to compensate for the sales decline throughout the year, and so full-year sales came in 8% below last year’s record-setting revenues,” she said.
“December marks just the fourth month of the year where the industry saw an increase over last year. 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.”
In terms of console sales for December, both Sony and Nintendo had a very successful month.
“There are a lot of hardware records this month. The PS3 realised its biggest month of sales ever, and for the first time sales have exceeded 1 million units,” she said.
“The Wii and the DS also had their biggest sales months ever, and in fact the two platforms hold the top two spots in sales of any hardware device in a single month. Overall, it was the biggest month of sales for hardware on both a dollar and unit basis.”
Frazier is expecting this strong uptake in console purchases to be a good indication for the future of software sales in 2010.
“Hopefully, the big increase in the overall install base of hardware systems will bring good things for software sales in 2010, especially with the incredible line-up of content coming out early in the year,” she said.