Video game consoles and software made £605.5m for the UK High Street last month, MCV can reveal.
The figure is based on GfK Chart-Track reports. Software made£265.4m alone but it was the console hardware market that saw the biggest spike, with over 1.25m games machines sold in the UK during December alone.
These figures do not include sales of digital games or accessories.
“HMV had a very strong December trading period, ahead of our expectations which is fantastic news,” said the retailer’s games boss Phil Browes. “Games was one of the star performers with strong demand on next-gen but also a real surge in demand for the key current-gen titles in the weeks leading up to Christmas.
“This has set a fantastic platform for 2014.”
GAME?category director Charlotte Knight added: “The arrival of Xbox One and PS4 meant it was an epic Christmas. We’ve never had two massive launches so close together before – let alone at Christmas – and we are delighted with their success. The format holders and publishers have absolutely delivered.”
Sainsbury’s games manager Gurdeep Hunjan agreed: “We saw fantastic sales of PS4 and Xbox One in the run up to Christmas. Demand continues to be strong into the New Year. Our popular launch deals for the consoles included bundle promotions that helped drive sales of key games with FIFA 2014 amongst the bestsellers.”
It wasn’t just a big pre-Christmas for UK retail, with the week after December 25th proving particularly strong for the High Street.
“December was amazing,” said Asda’s games chief Craig Thirkell. “We beat our expectations and the days between the Eves were just incredible as customers came out in droves for what turned out to be an exceptional Christmas.”
Games Centre MD Robert Lindsay added: “After a challenging year we had a fantastic December. It was clear that a large amount of consumers had been holding off for PS4 and Xbox One.
“We also had the busiest post-Christmas period ever as new consumers were keen to spend their cash on additional next-gen games and peripherals. Hardware sales have remained very strong post Christmas.
“If December is an indicator of where the games market is heading in 2014 then we should be in for a very good year.”