April Was A Massive Month For The Games Industry In The US

We’ve seen lots of indications that video game sales are significantly up as players stay indoors and look for ways to fill time due to the coronavirus. The first NPD report covering a full month since widespread social distancing started has now come out, showing just how big the bump has been in US sales.

On the whole, April spending increased 73% over the same period last year, which marked a new record high for the month. In total it reached $1.5 billion, beating the former record holder, $1.2 billion in April 2008. The high sales also impacted the yearly figures with a 12% increase over 2019. Game sales increased 55% over April 2018.

Final Fantasy 7 Remake had a big debut month, already reaching the #3 spot in this year’s best-sellers. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare continued to sell very well after months on the market, and still held onto the second-place spot for the month. Animal Crossing: New Horizons held a high spot as well, and is the best-selling Switch game over the past year.

This matches up with global sales data already announced by Nintendo. It’s notable that NPD doesn’t include digital sales for Nintendo games like Animal Crossing and Mario Kart, and considering Nintendo says digital accounts for 50% of Animal Crossing sales, the actual figure could be much higher.

Hardware sales were setting records as well. NPD says hardware spending increased 163% over the same period last year, to $420 million. Year-to-date hardware spending saw a 30% increase to $1.2 billion. And year-to-date sales of Nintendo Switch are the highest of any hardware platform in US history, breaking the record set by the Nintendo Wii in April 2009.

In an investor note, analyst Michael Pachter appeared to give more details on exact hardware unit sales from NPD. He said that the Nintendo Switch led the month with 808,000 units, the PS4 sold 411,000, and Xbox One sold 329,000. Each of these figures was roughly double the previous analyst sales estimates due to stay-at-home consumers, and Pachter says that widespread sellouts mean they could have been even higher. These hardware sales are particularly striking for a non-holiday month, especially one coming at the end of a console generation.

Check below for the full listing of April software sales. New games are marked in bold.

April 2020 NPD Software Sales

  1. Final Fantasy 7 Remake
  2. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
  3. Animal Crossing: New Horizons
  4. NBA 2K20
  5. Grand Theft Auto 5
  6. Resident Evil 3
  7. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2: Remastered
  8. MLB: The Show 20
  9. Madden NFL 20
  10. Red Dead Redemption 2
  11. Just Dance 2020
  12. FIFA 20
  13. Mortal Kombat 11
  14. Borderlands 3
  15. Predator: Hunting Grounds
  16. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
  17. Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order
  18. Persona 5 Royal
  19. Need for Speed Heat
  20. Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot

NPD Top Software Sales 2020 Year-To-Date

  1. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
  2. Animal Crossing: New Horizons
  3. Final Fantasy 7 Remake
  4. NBA 2K20
  5. Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot
  6. MLB: The Show 20
  7. Grand Theft Auto 5
  8. Resident Evil 3
  9. Madden NFL 20
  10. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe

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