NPD has tallied revenue in the USA video game market for the five weeks ending April 2, 2011. As expected, hardware sales were significantly up over March 2010, but software sales declined. Accessory sales continue to grow too on the motion initiatives from Microsoft and Sony.
While 3DS, priced at $250, certainly helped revenue figures for March 2011, it was the original DS, released in 2004, that continued to lead hardware sales in March 2011 - with a lifetime US base of 48.8m units. Figures will be filled in below as they become available.
With Sony & NPD citing PS3 and PSP increases, and Microsoft's statement that X360 was the top selling console for the month with the largest growth, PS3 sold between 314k and 402k in March, and PSP sold more than 120k. These figures indicate PSP weekly sales increased from 19,500 per week in February to at least 24,000 per week in March on the price cut. Nintendo's 3DS launched very late in the five week period, and sold about 380,000 units week one a comparable figure to week one sales in Japan. Otherwise, March was a slow month. As February had only four weeks while March had five, DS slowed from over 113,000 per week to about 92,000 per week (and that was with Pokemon buoying sales). PS3 likely dropped from about 81,000 per week in February to some figure above 63,000, although a small increase up to 86,000 or so is also possible without a firmer number. X360 fell from 134,000 per week in February to 87,000 per week in March, a 35% drop in weekly sales. Wii had a similar roughly 50,000 unit per week drop, falling 113,000 per week in February to 58,000 per week in March - down 49% on a weekly basis. Even so, with 3DS launching hardware sales increased at least 2% from February on a unit basis.
The 12-months ending March 2011 also marked an important milestone for Microsoft in the US market - the company sold more consoles than Nintendo or Sony over a full year for the first time since entering the market in 2001. During the 12 months to March 2011, Microsoft sold 7.02m X360s, compared to 6.71m Wiis. Microsoft has sold 26.7m X360s in the USA to date, compared to 35.3m Wiis.
On a multiplatform basis, NPD listed the following games as the top titles of March 2011.
01. Pokemon White Version (NDS) Nintendo - 1.3 Million+ (2.5m for both according to Nintendo)
02. Pokemon Black Version (NDS) Nintendo - 1.1 Million+
03. Homefront (360, PS3, PC) THQ
04. Dragon Age II (360, PS3, PC)** Electronic Arts
05. Call of Duty: Black Ops (360, PS3, NDS, Wii, PC)** Activision Blizzard
06.Lego Star Wars III: The Clone Wars (Wii, 360, NDS, PS3, 3DS, PSP, PC) LucasArts
07. Crysis 2 (360, PS3, PC) Electronic Arts
08. NBA 2K11 (360, PS3, PS2, Wii, PSP, PC) Take 2 Interactive
09. MLB 11: The Show (PS3, PSP, PS2) Sony
10. Fight Night Champion (360, PS3) Electronic Arts
Below Pokemon Black / White there was a big drop off in software sales, but at the moment the only NPD software figures are for Pokemon. No 3DS games charted in the top ten, but according to USA Today (citing NPD) the best-selling 3DS game so far is Capcom's Super Street Fighter IV 3D Edition. The newspaper also noted that on a single-platform basis Just Dance 2 (Wii), Killzone 3 (PS3) and Zumba Fitness (Wii) would have charted in the top ten. In the absence of several major titles in March 2011 to offset Final Fantasy XIII, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, and God of War III, which were the major March 2010 games software sales were down substantially in March 2011, even with Pokemon. Twitter accounts for various neogaf users suggest the top selling 3DS games of March after Street Fighter were Pilotwings Resort, Lego Star Wars, Ghost Recon, Super Monkey Ball, Ridge Racer, and Steel Diver, in that order among others.
At the moment, April looks like a pretty slow month, with no major releases, 3DS slowing a bit after a good launch week, and price cuts not likely to come before May (rumored for Wii) or June (rumored for X360 and / or PS3).
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