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Switch Best-Selling Console in the US in January, PS5 #1 in Terms of Revenue

Switch Best-Selling Console in the US in January, PS5 #1 in Terms of Revenue - Sales

by William D'Angelo , posted on 01 March 2021 / 3,219 Views

The Nintendo Switch was the best-selling console in the US in January 2021, according to figures from NPD. NPD includes the dates for January 3 through January 30. Sales for the Switch were the highest of any platform in January since the Wii in January 2010. 

The Switch has been the best-selling console for 26 consecutive months, since December 2018, which is the longest streak since NPD started tracking sales numbers. 

"Nintendo Switch was the best-selling hardware platform in units sold for the month of January," said NPD analyst Mat Piscatella. "Unit sales of Nintendo Switch were the highest of any platform in a January month since the Nintendo Wii in January 2010."

Nintendo Switch Best-Selling Console in the US in December, Cyberpunk 2077 Debuts in 2nd

The PlayStation 5 was the best-selling console in terms of total revenue. As a reminder, the PS5 is priced higher than the Switch. 

"PlayStation 5 was the best-selling hardware platform in dollars sold in January, with the highest dollar sales total for a January month since the Nintendo Wii in January 2009," said Piscatella.

Piscatella was asked about Xbox Series X|S sales and he said that from what he has seen that every console made available in the US has sold. 

Overall spending on video games increased 42 percent year-over-year from $3.32 billion to $4.71 billion in January. Overall spending on hardware increased a massive 144 percent year-on-year from $131 million to $319 million. Spending on video game content increased 36 percent year-over-year from $3.06 billion to $4.17 billion. 

"January 2021 consumer spending across video game hardware, content, and accessories reached a January record $4.7 billion," said Piscatella. ["That’s] 42% higher when compared to a year ago."

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War Sales

Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War the best-selling game in the US in January 2021 and has been the best-selling game in each month since it launched in November. It is the 20th best-selling game in the US tracked history in terms of revenue. 

"Call of Duty: Black Ops — Cold War was January’s best-selling game," Piscatella said. "Call of Duty: Black Ops — Cold War has been the best-selling game in the U.S. each month since its November launch, and it now ranks as the 20th best-selling video game in U.S. tracked history ranked by lifetime dollar sales."

Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla continues to sell well as it is in second place and is the second fastest-selling game in the Assassin’s Creed, only trailing Assassin’s Creed III.

"Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla was the second best-selling game of January," said Piscatella. "When comparing each title’s first three months of sales, Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla is now the 2nd fastest-selling Assassin’s Creed franchise release in U.S. history, trailing only Assassin’s Creed III."

Animal Crossing: New Horizons was the best-selling game for the Nintendo Switch and overall fifth best-selling game in January. 

"Animal Crossing: New Horizons ranked as January’s fifth best-selling title," said Piscatella. "This is the first time it has ranked among the top 5 best-selling games of the month since ranking fifth in July 2020. Animal Crossing: New Horizons repeated as the month’s best-selling title on Nintendo Switch."

Animal Crossing: New Horizons Sales

Here are the top 20 best-selling games in terms of dollars for January 2021:

Rank Last Month Rank January 2021 Top 20 Games (Physical and Full Game Digital from the Nintendo eShop, PlayStation, Steam, and Xbox platforms for publishers in the Digital Leader Panel) ranked on dollar sales Publisher
1 1 Call of Duty: Black Ops: Cold War Activision Blizzard (Corp)
2 3 Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla Ubisoft
3 4 Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales Sony (Corp)
4 5 Madden NFL 21 Electronic Arts
5 6 Animal Crossing: New Horizons* Nintendo
6 7 Mario Kart 8: Deluxe* Nintendo
7 19 Ring Fit Adventure Nintendo
8 26 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Activision Blizzard (Corp)
9 11 Super Smash Bros. Ultimate* Nintendo
10 8 NBA 2K21* Take-Two Interactive (Corp)
11 10 Super Mario 3D All-Stars* Nintendo
12 14 FIFA 21 Electronic Arts
13 9 Immortals: Fenyx Rising Ubisoft
14 20 Mortal Kombat 11 Warner Bros. Interactive
15 12 Just Dance 2021 Ubisoft
16 17 The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild* Nintendo
17 31 Minecraft: PlayStation 4 Edition Microsoft (Corp)
18 2 Cyberpunk 2077* Warner Bros. Interactive
19 18 Super Mario Party* Nintendo
20 40 UFC 4 Electronic Arts
* Digital sales not included

Top 10 best-selling Nintendo games for January 2021:

Rank Last Month Rank January 2021 Top 10 Games (Physical and Full Game Digital for publishers in the Digital Leader Panel) ranked on dollar sales Publisher
1 1 Animal Crossing: New Horizons* Nintendo
2 2 Mario Kart 8: Deluxe* Nintendo
3 11 Ring Fit Adventure Nintendo
4 4 Super Smash Bros. Ultimate* Nintendo
5 3 Super Mario 3D All-Stars* Nintendo
6 9 The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild* Nintendo
7 6 Just Dance 2021 Ubisoft
8 10 Super Mario Party* Nintendo
9 7 New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe* Nintendo
10 8 Super Mario Odyssey* Nintendo
* Digital sales not included

Top 10 best-selling PlayStation games for January 2021:

Rank Last Month Rank January 2021 Top 10 Games (Physical and Full Game Digital for publishers in the Digital Leader Panel) ranked on dollar sales Publisher
1 1 Call of Duty: Black Ops: Cold War Activision Blizzard (Corp)
2 2 Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales Sony (Corp)
3 4 Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla Ubisoft
4 5 Madden NFL 21 Electronic Arts
5 11 Minecraft: PlayStation 4 Edition Microsoft (Corp)
6 10 Demon’s Souls Sony (Corp)
7 7 Ghost of Tsushima Sony (Corp)
8 8 FIFA 21 Electronic Arts
9 6 NBA 2K21* Take-Two Interactive (Corp)
10 17 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Activision Blizzard (Corp)
* Digital sales not included

Top 10 best-selling Xbox games for January 2021:

Rank Last Month Rank January 2021 Top 10 Games (Physical and Full Game Digital for publishers in the Digital Leader Panel) ranked on dollar sales Publisher
1 1 Call of Duty: Black Ops: Cold War Activision Blizzard (Corp)
2 3 Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla Ubisoft
3 4 Madden NFL 21 Electronic Arts
4 9 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Activision Blizzard (Corp)
5 10 Forza Horizon 4 Microsoft (Corp)
6 5 NBA 2K21* Take-Two Interactive (Corp)
7 2 Cyberpunk 2077 Warner Bros. Interactive
8 7 FIFA 21 Electronic Arts
9 15 Minecraft: Xbox One Edition Microsoft (Corp)
10 16 UFC 4 Electronic Arts
* Digital sales not included

Thanks, VentureBeat.


A life-long and avid gamer, William D'Angelo was first introduced to VGChartz in 2007. After years of supporting the site, he was brought on in 2010 as a junior analyst, working his way up to lead analyst in 2012. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel dedicated to gaming Let's Plays and tutorials. You can contact the author at wdangelo@vgchartz.com or on Twitter @TrunksWD.


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6 Comments
siebensus4 (on 12 February 2021)

PS5 is #1 in terms of revenue – but on last place in terms of profit.

  • +3
Dulfite siebensus4 (on 12 February 2021)

Yeah I don't really understand why we should highlight revenue when we don't also know profit. It implies they are having more financial success with PS5 than Nintendo is with Switch, which isn't an accurate implication whatsoever.

  • +4
Fight-the-Streets Dulfite (on 12 February 2021)

Honestly speaking, this is so typical American, numbers, numbers, numbers, the higher the number, the higher the hype. But what a specific number really means is not questioned. I never liked this Mat Piscatella, he also repeats the same numbers.

I can also say I banged 300 women (the fact that I'm still single and not a likable person is omitted). So, what's the number 300 good for then?

  • +2
SvenTheTurkey Fight-the-Streets (on 12 February 2021)

I think the dollar sales is still a valuable piece of data though. It kind of highlights interest.

It's sort of a supply and demand statistic. But in this case, the dollars are in limited supply. And the demand is how badly do the manufacturers want that money. If they're making an expensive product that appeals to less people, they're still grabbing more dollars than others.

But yes. Revenue only tells part of the story. I think the picture being painted is about consumer interest though. It's not really about financial sustainability of a company. No one really knows how much profit any company makes per console. We just know Nintendo is probably making substantial profits by now while Sony is likely losing substantial money per console sale.

But it will always be speculative since that information is rarely, if ever, volunteered by any company.

  • -1
Real siebensus4 (on 13 February 2021)

Yeah ps5 and Xbox series x both selling at a loss

  • +1
Qwark (on 13 February 2021)

Doesn't really dat much. As long as the Switch doesn't sell 1.75 times as much units as the PS5 it will not win revenue wise. The PS5 is dood at a losse though and the Switch is not. Spiderman is still printing money,also Ghost of tsushima and Demon Souls dus rather welk thuis month.

  • 0