Game Sales Took a Nosedive in April, NPD Group Says

Old Man Winter made an early exit this year in may parts of the country, and perhaps the unexpected sunshine led to gamers discovering things to do outside the house. Whatever the reason, by the time April rolled around, videogame sales were on a sharp decline, dropping a whopping 32 percent to $630.4 million in the U.S., according to NPD Group's data.

Breaking it down by category, software sales plummeted 42 percent to $307.2 million, a figure that includes PC and console games, and related hardware dropped 32 percent to $189.7 million. If not Old Man Winter, go ahead and blame the Easter Bunny.

"This year, Easter fell very early in April, which means most Easter-related purchases may have fallen into March this year, whereas last year, Easter fell late in April causing most sales to fall in that month," NPD analyst Anita Frazier surmises, according to "We usually find that Easter-related purchases generate an extra 10 percent in revenue in the month they occur, so some of the softness compared to last April could be attributed to the shift in Easter timing."

Even though April was a rough month for the games industry, Microsoft found reason to celebrate with its Xbox 360 console taking pole position as the best-selling console in the U.S. for the 16th consecutive month.

Microsoft took the news in stride, reminding folks that the "Xbox 360 continues to hold the number one spot in the U.S., selling more units in April than any other console; marking the 16th consecutive month as the best-selling console" in the country. According to NPD Group's data, Microsoft sold 236,000 Xbox 360 consoles in April, while Kinect Star Wars was the No. 1 title for the month.
rapid1 2 years ago

LOL; they have not made anything new in consoles hardware wise in how many years, and anyone is surprised at this, REALLY!

rapid1 2 years ago

OH yeah making the XBOX look like R2D2 externally on the same internal hardware is not a hardware design upgrade it is just a new suit.

NBurke 2 years ago

I'm surpised games sales are up in my household, but then again my husband always has a new game lol

karanm 2 years ago

Old hardware and lackluster games are probably major contributors, although that kinect star wars game looks BAD ASS!! Also Nvidia launched their new gpu in the last couple of months which would eat up the majority of anyone's gaming budget leaving little money for actual games. Could also be the article by Joel Hruska (oooh was that a little below the belt??)

sackyhack 2 years ago

What's there to even buy though? Last thing I paid full price for was Mass Effect 3. With all the Steam sales (and other retailers) during Christmas, I and many of my friends have a huge backlog. And other than ME3 and a few others there haven't been any big releases to bump up the charts.

Omegadraco 2 years ago

Definitely not surprised here, plus most of the big releases for PC's are coming in May so not surprised that April sucked for sales.

ajm531 2 years ago

There are plenty of articles on this across the web but the gaming industry is going to have to change somewhere some how. Everyone is getting by just fine with so many and so much cheaper mobile games. Sure it drains battery and sure its not console quality but its just enough for the average consumer. Even nvidia is pumping out games that are getting close to console quality for what 4-8 bucks compared to 60$?? Yeah again teh average consumer which is the majority of people would rather pay a few dollars instead of 60 or even 40$ for a mobile game thats fun and addicting and is available right there on their phone.

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