updated 04:55 pm EST, Fri January 15, 2010
December strongest month ever for video games
December saw record sales for the video game industry, according to analyst group NPD. It was in fact the biggest sales month to date, or at least as long as NPD has been keeping such stats. The record was a welcome change to the industry, which has otherwise suffered sales declines. And it was despite lower software sales, which fell by 7 percent compared to December of 2008.
Nintendo's Wii was the best selling console in December, finding 3.81 million new homes, while the handheld Nintendo DS was second-best, at 3.31 million. Sony's PS3 was far behind but still sold a record 1.31 million units versus the Xbox 360's 655,000. The aging PS2 was at the rear with 333,000 sales.
The PS3 was likely helped by the introduction of the slim model and resulting price drop to $299 while the Wii was also helped by its price cut. The Xbox 360's prices technically didn't change and just saw the Elite model replace the Pro at the same $249.
As for software, tops at 2.82 million was New Super Mario Bros for the Wii, followed by Wii Fit Plus at 2.41 million and Wii Sports Resort at 1.79 million. Modern Warfare 2 for the Xbox 360 was fourth, at 1.63 million, followed by the same title for the PS3, at 1.12 million. Six of the top 10 games were Wii titles.
The one month couldn't help overall annual sales figures, however, which were down 8 percent, at $19.7 billion compared to 2008's $21.4 billion in sales.