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ANALYSIS: A closer look at gaming's top brands

Ben Parfitt
ANALYSIS: A closer look at gaming's top brands

Earlier this week, we revealed the Top Five biggest games brands of all time using Chart-Track’s CUBE?data warehouse solution.

This week we reveal the full Top Ten, taking into account all games sold from 1996 to the present day. Only three brands within the all-time Top Ten are from outside the games industry

Sonic The Hedgehog is No.6 in units (No.8 in revenue) and first appeared on the Master System in October 1991. As with Mario, many Sonic titles were released before actual sales are counted for this analysis, but the fact that the brand still sits so high in the ranking shows the endearing popularity of Sega’s most cherished mascot. 

The top seller in terms of units from within the Sonic franchise is 2004’s Sonic Heroes, the first multi-platform Sonic title. However, the best-selling game that features the iconic hedgehog is the original Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games, which arrived on Wii in 2007.

Star Wars is No.7 in units and No.6 in value. It has the highest title count of any brand within the Top 30. Star Wars has been a video game proposition since around 1983. 

The first LucasArts-published Star Wars game was X-Wing back in 1993.  One of the first to count in this analysis was Rebel Assault 2 from late 1995. Star Wars: Battlefront II from late 2005 is the third biggest box shifter for this brand – only beaten by LEGO?Star Wars II: The Original Trilogy and LEGO?Star Wars: The Complete Saga.  

Need For Speed is No.8 by units and No.7 by revenue. The EA title debuted first on 3DO back in 1994. There have been 19 NFS games released at retail, with 2006’s NFS?Carbon established as the top seller.

LEGO?is No.9 in units and No.12 in revenue. The 47-strong video game franchise started back in 1997 with Mindscape’s LEGO?Island on PC. However, it was 2005’s LEGO?Star Wars that propelled LEGO?into the big leagues. 

LEGO’s current all-time No.1 in sales is LEGO?Batman, followed by LEGO?Indiana Jones and three LEGO Star Wars titles, all of which have sold over 1m units in the UK and generated between £25 to £30m.  

Pokémon rounds off the Top Ten in units, and is No.11 in revenue. This brand began life on Game Boy in 1999 with Pokémon Red and Blue.  These two are still No.2 and 3 in the all-time Pokémon unit/revenue generators and pretty much single-handedly doubled the annual sales of Game Boy Colour hardware from 1999 to 2000.  

But it was with the release of Pokémon Yellow that the brand really caught fire. This SKU is the biggest in the series, grossing £20m.  

61 Pokémon titles have been released in the UK. The Top Ten account for over half of all Pokémon units: six are on Game?Boy Colour, two on Game Boy Advance and two on DS.

PERIPHERAL VISIONS

For accessory manufacturers, Chart-Track’s CUBE analysis tool allows for a super-grouping of all accessories, split here into six main product groups. 

Traditional gaming accessories are covered under just four groupings: Control, Power, Connection/Communication and Customisation. Digital Content and Toys are shown separately. 

In terms of units sold all types of controllers have been in decline since 2009, due to the severe contraction of the Wii market for controllers such as Wii Remotes, nunchucks and steering wheels. 

Digital Content – which includes online time and points cards – 

has exploded since 2009 and the arrival of Activision’s Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure in 2011 has created a new market segment of toy accessories.

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Tags: video games , brands , analysis , top

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