According to leading market research company, The NPD Group, U.S. retail sales of video games, which includes portable and console hardware, software and accessories, generated revenues of close to $19.66 billion, an 8 percent decline over the $21.4 billion generated in 2008.

Retail sales in the PC game software industry also experienced declines, with revenues down 23 percent, generating $538 million in 2009. The total console, portable and PC game software industry generated $10.5 billion, an 11 percent decline vs. the $11.7 billion generated in 2008.

“December sales broke all industry records and underscores the incredible value consumers find in computer and video games even in a down economy,” said Michael D. Gallagher, president and CEO of the Entertainment Software Association, the trade group which represents U.S. computer and video game publishers. “This is a very strong way to transition into 2010. I anticipate these solid sales numbers to continue upward through 2010 with a pipeline full of highly-anticipated titles.”

Aside from portable hardware which experienced a 6 percent increase in revenue in 2009, all video game categories experienced declines, with the largest decline coming from console hardware (-13 percent). Console software and portable software both experienced declines of 10 percent, while video game accessories experienced a 1 percent decline.

“When we started the last decade, video game industry sales, including PC games, totaled $7.98B in 2000,” said Anita Frazier, industry analyst, The NPD Group. “In ten years, the industry has changed dramatically in many ways, but most importantly it was grown over those years by more than 250 percent at retail alone. Considering there are many new sources of revenue including subscriptions and digital distribution, industry growth is even more impressive.”

2009 Combined Top 10 Console/Portable Software SKU’s, Sorted By Units
RankTitle PublisherRelease Date
1360 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2*Activision BlizzardNov-09
2WII WII Sports Resort w/ WII Motion Plus*Nintendo of AmericaJul-09
3WII New Super Mario Bros. WIINintendo of AmericaNov-09
4WII WII Fit w/ Balance Board*Nintendo of AmericaMay-08
5WII WII Fit Plus*Nintendo of AmericaOct-09
6WII Mario Kart w/ WheelNintendo of AmericaApr-08
7WII WII Play w/ Remote*Nintendo of AmericaFeb-07
8PS3 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2*Activision BlizzardNov-09
9360 Halo 3: ODSTMicrosoftSept-09
10NDS Pokemon Platinum VersionNintendo of AmericaMar-09
(*includes CE, GOTY editions, bundles, etc. but not those bundled with hardware)

Source: The NPD Group / Retail Tracking Service

2009 Top 10 PC Game Software Titles, Sorted By Units
RankItem PublisherRelease Date
1PC The Sims 3Electronic ArtsJun-09
2PC World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Expansion PackBlizzard Entertainment
(Activision Blizzard)
3PC The Sims 2 Double DeluxeElectronic ArtsApr-08
4PC World of Warcraft: Battle ChestBlizzard Entertainment
(Activision Blizzard)
5PC Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2Activision
(Activision Blizzard)
6PC World of WarcraftBlizzard Entertainment
(Activision Blizzard)
7PC The Sims 3: World Adventures Expansion PackElectronic ArtsNov-09
8PC SporeElectronic ArtsSept-08
9PC Dragon Age: OriginsElectronic ArtsOct-09
10PC Empire: Total WarSega of AmericaMar-09
(*includes CE, GOTY editions, etc.)

Source: The NPD Group / Retail Tracking Service

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