Report: Video game sales continued to decline in March (NPD Group)
Although overall sales for the month were lower than last March, analysts believe that the year will continue to move above average.
The NPD Group’s March 2022 report showed that sales fell again across all categories in terms of year-over-year revenue, but showed a slight increase from February. Total hardware, software and accessories sales were $4.8 billion, down 15% from March 2021, but up nearly $500 million from to february total of $4.3 billion. Although the downward trend in sales continues, NDP Executive Director Mat Piscatella believes the lower March numbers may not predict the rest of the year.
“Looking at the past few years, the March declines may have been just a blow because of the comparison to a year ago,” Piscatalla told GameDaily. “It really depends on what happens from April to June and how the 2022 spending curve evolves. Of course, spending will be determined by the availability of new consoles, as well as how consumers react price trends in other segments of the market, as well as how quickly they return to experiential spending (such as travel and live events, for example). above the 2019 benchmark, but it remains to be seen how 2022 performance will compare to 2020 and 2021.”
For hardware, Nintendo Switch sold the most units in March and the first quarter of the year, while Xbox Series led both periods in dollar sales. In terms of dollar sales and units sold, last month was a record March for Xbox, surpassing the previous March 2014 high for dollar sales and the 2011 peak for March unit sales. .
Ring of Elden was the best-selling game, defying expectations and featuring an inverse decay curve, where a product sells more units over time instead of fewer.
“It’s rare for a title to see bigger sales in the second month than in the first month,” Piscatella said. “Word of mouth is usually the main driver when something like this happens. A classic example is Guitar Hero, a game that was on the market for a while, but thanks to word of mouth became one of the biggest games on the market. I don’t think we’ll see Guitar Hero type behavior with Ring of Elden, but what’s remarkable is that its launch month was very impressive on its own, and it increased sales in the second month compared to what it did in its first month ? Incredibly impressive.
Other notable software mentions include Gran Turismo 7which made its debut just behind Ring of Elden at number two on NPD’s charts and set a new record for the series. Despite its launch towards the end of the month, Kirby and the Forgotten Land was floating at number three, kicking Pokemon Legends: Arceus up to sixth place. Ghostwire Tokyo from Tango Gameworks, debuted at number 12, while Square Enix’s niche tactical title Triangle Strategy ended up in the top 20 at number 16.
Pokemon Legends pushed Call of Duty: Vanguard instead of number nine. Although things may look bleak for the long-running series – a new Call of Duty isn’t expected until 2024 – Piscatella said the series has evolved beyond the need for annual releases.
“I think it’s important to consider Call of Duty as a total property now – the premium game, war zoneand Portable,” he said. “Avant-garde is still the best-selling game on the market for the past 12 months, and last December, Call of Duty is consistently the best-selling premium game franchise of the year for the past 13 years.”
That’s also not expected to change in the near future, with Activision Blizzard adding more crossovers and unique events to both games, including the new Godzilla and King Kong event in war zone and Avant-garde.
It’s also unlikely to change. Genshin Impactdominance in the mobile market. He, with Garena Free Fire, Coin Masterand Candy Crush Saga remain the top-grossing mobile games, despite an overall drop in mobile revenue of 12% compared to March 2021. This is a curious scenario, because the number of installations has increasedalthough it also matches the general trend of spending time with other activities as pandemic restrictions continue to loosen.
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