NPD: November games market defies credit crunch

The games industry’s recession-proof credentials have been given another shot in the arm with the news that NPD stats show the North American games market hit $2.91 billion in November – a value ten per cent up on the same month in 2007.

Year-to-date numbers are also impressing, with the market worth $16.04 billion so far. This compares to $13.14 billion at the same stage in 2007.

It was another strong month for Nintendo, with the Wii selling over two million machines and the DS 1.57 million. Xbox 360’s recent success also continues, with its unit sales of 836,000 representing double that of PS3 (378,000). Sony’s PSP shifted 421,000 units and the PS2 206,000.

Microsoft will also be pleased to see first party first person shooter Gears of War 2 top the monthly software charts, having sold 1.5 million copies in the period. Activision Blizzard’s Call of Duty: World at War claimed second sport with 1.41 million unit sales.

"The video games industry continues to set a blistering sales pace, overall, with total month revenues 10% higher than last November, even with 7 less days of post-Thanksgiving shopping this year as compared to last," NPD stated.

"With $16B realized for the year so far through November, the industry is still on pace to achieve total year revenues of $22B in the U.S.

"All three of the newer generation console systems have something to brag about. The expanded supply of Wii systems at retail was clearly evident in the sales figures this month. The 360 realized a nice unit sales bump over last November and the PS3 year-to-date unit sales growth is impressive.

"It’s clear there can be more multiple victors this generation and while price is certainly a strong factor, particularly as the current economic situation continues to prevail, the most important factor that will drive success in 2009 will be the line-up of compelling games that will keep consumers involved in the industry."

To hear the reactions from each of the platform holders to the NPD stats, click on the following links:

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