NPD figures for the US games market, which combine both physical and digital sales, often make happier reading than our UK retail figures. And the latest 49 per cent year-on-year rise in figures for September shows that more clearly than ever.
Sales soared on the back of the hugely successful Destiny 2. It was the best-selling game for the month, and it drew greater revenue than any other title to date for the year. It’s the best-selling game of the year as well, and the third best-selling game of the last 12 months, behind Activision’s own Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare and EA’s Battlefield 1.
In the UK, with only physical sales figures to go on, MCV reported that the game was well down on sales compared to its predecessor – with the caveat that digital shift would undoubtedly make up for many of those.
However, NPD figures are clear that the title has actually grown from its last outing. Combined consumer spend across both physical and digital formats exceeded first month sales of the previous titles. The report isn’t so clear on unit numbers, but it’s certainly a completely different story from the one the UK figures suggested – and we can’t see there being any great cultural divide on this title.
Speaking of cultural divides, the NPD September figures were also boosted by the launch of NBA 2K18. While it’s not quite FIFA for the US, the title performed superbly, becoming the best-selling sports title in the US this year. Beyond that it’s the biggest sports title by revenue in its launch month since the launch of the current generation consoles.
In other news, hardware spending has grown 20% to date year-on-year. This is driven by both the Switch and SNES Classic, as well as strong PS4 sales – with the latter remaining the best-selling console in the US. Finally the report added that the Switch Pro Controller remains the best-selling accessory for the year, showing that US consumers at least are using the Switch with their TVs and not just as a handheld.