Red Dead Redemption 2 doesn’t clinch UK retail’s biggest week one of 2018

UK retail sales figures are out for Red Dead Redemption 2 and while the title has sold very well indeed, it has failed to top FIFA 19, which remains the biggest week one release of the year. 

Second place is highly respectable of course, but with huge development costs, the game will need to successfully monetise its online service in order to be considered a success – by Rockstar standards at least.

The title was never going to have the same draw as the company’s biggest franchise. And the games market is a very different place to 2013 when GTA V was released. But week one sales of 27 per cent of the biggest game launch of all-time is nothing to be sniffed at.

We await a report on digital sales from Rockstar or parent Take-Two.

Another way to look at the game is that RDR 2 claimed just over 60 per cent of the retail market this week, so the idea that no one was buying anything else this weekend is rather put to rest. Compare that to an incredible 89 per cent market share for GTA V on its launch week and you get an idea of how big it was out-of-the-blocks.

More recent comparisons of 75 per cent for FIFA 19 and just 44 per cent for Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 show RDR 2 is doing well, though not outstandingly so, in dominating public consciousness at launch.

Going back yet further in the record books the new title sold around double what its predecessor did, way back in 2010. That’s hardly relevant today, with the first game considered to be something of a slow-builder in terms of its fan base and acclaim.

Sony will be happy enough at least, with its marketing deal and huge install base paying off, with a 68 per cent share of sales, leaving Xbox with 32 per cent.

With reviews that couldn’t be more glowing if they tried, the game is almost certain to continue to sell well in the weeks and months to come. Unlike perennial franchises, such as FIFA and Call of Duty, it wasn’t stocked in any of the Sainsbury’s Local or Tesco Metro stores we visited over the weekend, so it may take a little longer to reach all and sundry.

Here’s the Top Ten for the week ending October 27th (data courtesy of GfK/Ukie):

About Seth Barton

Seth Barton is the editor of MCV – which covers every aspect of the industry: development, publishing, marketing and much more. Before that Seth toiled in games retail at Electronics Boutique, studied film at university, published console and PC games for the BBC, and spent many years working in tech journalism. Living in South East London, he divides his little free time between board games, video games, beer and family. You can find him tweeting @sethbarton1.

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