December Best Month Ever for Games, 2009 Still Down

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We all know that there is an economic downturn going on so to belabor the point would be useless. But the games industry was expected to be hit as well and lose ground for the year. But according to the NPD Group’s Anita Frazier, December was the best month ever, "The video game industry experienced its biggest sales month ever, besting last December by 4%.  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."

8% is not good, but it’s also not bad when other industries have seen double-digit downturns over the last year or so. Part of what helped buoy the industry were portable game hardware, "which was up due to a 7% increase in the average retail price.  The DS platform, across all categories, contributed 17% of total industry dollars in 2009, up three points from 2008," according to Anita.

The year, while a loss overall, wasn’t all bad, "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 regards to games, by now you’ve all heard that the super-hyped Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 was the best selling game of the year and 4th best all time. Three of the top ten are in fact Call of Duty titles. For December however, "The best-selling game of the month was New Super Mario Bros. Wii, which also captures the third spot on the annual top 10 list for 2009."

2010 is already beginning with a bang. Darksiders, Bayonetta and Aliens vs. Predator are all out this month and could help lift sales and start the year out right. The economy is said to be in recovery mode which could also help things move in a generally upward fashion. Of course as gamers, we always have something to look forward to.

In : PC

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