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NPD: June Gaming Sales See Gains

Port Washington, N.Y. – June retail/e-commerce sales of video game hardware, software and accessories grew 24 percent over the same period in 2013, according to monthly point-of-sale data from The NPD Group.

Liam Callahan, NPD Group games industry analysis director, said the increase resulted in part from a more than doubling of hardware gaming growth, and “a modest 1 percent growth in accessories.”

“Nine out of the last 10 months saw year-over-year growth in new physical video game sales,” Callahan said. “While the new hardware launches were a major factor in overall new physical video game growth, the start of this year-over-year growth began in September 2013, two months before the November 2013 launches of Xbox One and PS4.”

September and October 2013 year-over-year growth for overall new physical video game sales were driven by software increases, according to Callahan.

Callahan said gaming hardware sales accounted for a 106 percent growth, coming entirely from increases in console sales, which were up 200 percent from June 2013.

 “The strong sales performance of console hardware helped to offset the declines seen in portable hardware,” Callahan said. “Combined sales of Xbox One and PS4 are over 80 percent higher than the combined totals for Xbox 360 and PS3 — an indication of the strength of the start of this new console generation.”

As for June software sales, NPD said console titles increased by 6 percent, with portable software driving overall video game software declines.

Many of the top games in June mirrored those of the prior month. Six of the same games ranked in the top 10 both months.

“Three of these top 10 games were also new launches from May 2014 (‘Watch Dogs,’ ‘Mario Kart 8’ and ‘Wolfenstein: The New Order’), indicating the weakness of new launches in June,” said Callahan.

NPD said sales of launch titles in June 2014 did not compare favorably to those launched in June 2013, which included the PS3 exclusive “The Last of Us,” “Nintendo’s Animal Crossing: New Leaf” and a retail version of “Minecraft” for the Xbox 360.

“While unit sales of launch titles in June 2014 declined 67 percent when compared to June 2013 launch title sales, there was a 47 percent increase in unit sales for games that launched across the second quarter of 2014 (April to June) when compared to the same time period in 2013,” said Callahan.

“Consumer’s attention toward soccer due to the World Cup is reflected in EA’s ‘FIFA 14’ (which launched in September 2013 for 360/PS3, and November 2013 for Xbox/PS4) ranking in the top 10 games for the first time in 2014 along with EA’s 2014 ‘FIFA World Cup: Brazil,’ which ranked at No. 12.”

Concerning gaming accessories, NPD said sales grew 1 percent in June over the period a year ago, with gamepads driving a majority of the growth showing a 29 percent increase.

“Interactive gaming toys, the accessory type accounting for Skylanders and Disney Infinity accessory items, increased by 6 percent over June 2013,” according to Callahan.