NPD: September video game sales drop 8 percent

Oct 15, 2010 By BARBARA ORTUTAY , AP Technology Writer

(AP) -- In grim news for video game companies, market researcher NPD Group said Thursday U.S. retail sales of game hardware, software and accessories fell 8 percent in September to $1.2 billion.

Game hardware tumbled 19 percent to $383 million as fewer people bought and PlayStation 3 consoles. Only the Xbox 360 sold more units during the month than it did the same time a year ago. Citing NPD figures, Microsoft said it sold 484,000 of the consoles, up 37 percent year-over-year.

Nintendo, meanwhile, sold 403,000 of its handheld DS systems in the U.S., and 254,000 Wii consoles. Sony would not disclose how many PlayStations it sold, and NPD stopped disclosing the sales figures for individual gaming systems this month.

Software sales were also down, dropping 6 percent to $614 million, though analysts were expecting a slight increase. Microsoft blockbuster "Halo: Reach" sold 3.3 million units, but it wasn't enough to lift the category. Other top-selling games included "Madden NFL 11" from Electronic Arts Inc. and "Dead Rising 2" from Capcom USA.

Jesse Divnich, an analyst with Electronic Entertainment Design and Research, said he had expected software sales to grow 3 percent. Part of the decline could be attributed to "Halo." The game is so popular that the rest of the industry was afraid to go up against it and did not launch big titles last month, he said.

NPD Analyst Anita Frazier said while retail sales showed a decline, "it's important to remember that there is a growing volume of content being sold digitally, or otherwise outside the traditional retail channel."

That means more people are downloading games and buying extra content online - though most video games are still sold in brick-and-mortar stores.

Game accessories were the only category to see an uptick, boosted by Corp.'s new Move . The best-selling accessory was the 1600 point card, lets users pay for movies, games or extra game content through their Xbox 360 consoles. The Network Card for the PlayStation 3 came in second. Both cards cost $20.

Despite the sales decline, shares of GameStop Corp., the world's largest retailer, rose 43 cents, or 2.3 percent, to $19.25 in after-hours trading. The stock had closed down 43 cents at $2.23.

Explore further: EU Parliament votes to break up Google

not rated yet
add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

March video game retail sales climb 6 percent

Apr 15, 2010

(AP) -- After a rocky 2009 followed by two months of double-digit declines, U.S. retail sales of video game software, hardware and accessories finally saw an uptick in March.

June video game sales decline again, NPD says

Jul 16, 2010

(AP) -- Summer doldrums weighed on the video game industry in June, with U.S. retail sales of hardware, software and accessories down 6 percent from a year earlier, to $1.1 billion.

July video game sales show sharp decline

Aug 14, 2009

(AP) -- Hurt by the recession and few hit game launches, U.S. retail sales of video games dropped sharply in July, showing an even bigger decline than what many analysts were expecting.

June video game sales drop sharply

Jul 17, 2009

(AP) -- Squeezed by the economic downturn, U.S. retail sales of video games dropped sharply in June, the largest year-over-year decline the industry has seen in nearly nine years.

February video game sales drop 15 percent

Mar 12, 2010

(AP) -- U.S. retail sales of video games declined 15 percent in February, hurt in part by an ongoing decline in sales of music games and lower sales of the Wii system.

Recommended for you

EU Parliament votes to break up Google

11 hours ago

The European Parliament voted overwhelmingly for the break-up of Google Thursday in a largely symbolic vote that nevertheless cast another blow in the four-year standoff between Brussels and the US Internet ...

Toyota finds new air bag issue, recalls more cars

15 hours ago

Toyota Motor Corp. recalled more than 40,000 vehicles in Japan on Thursday as part of a worldwide scare over defective air bags and is investigating a new type of air bag problem that could lead to further recalls.

Netflix sues Yahoo CIO for alleged kickbacks

Nov 26, 2014

Netflix is suing a former company vice president who is now chief information officer at Yahoo, accusing him of receiving money from vendors he hired to work with the video streaming company.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.