Video Games Industry Destroys Movie Industry With Killer $43 Billion Revenue Haul In 2018

When it comes to entertainment, many might expect the Hollywood movie industry to take in the most money, but that assumption would be wrong. The latest figures from the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) and The NPD Group show that the video game industry destroyed the movie industry on a revenue front during 2018. The video game industry raked in $43.4 billion in revenue altogether, nearly four times the money made by the top 100 movies of 2018.


Statistics showed for the year that the video game industry saw 18% growth in revenue compared to 2017. Included in the $43.4 billion figure for the industry overall was hardware sales, which accounted for $7.5 billion in revenue. When combined, revenue from physical and digital game sales, in-game purchase, and software subscriptions added up to $35.8 billion.

The top 20 games in sales for 2018 are, in order:

  1. Red Dead Redemption 2
  2. Call of Duty: Black Ops 4
  3. NBA 2K19
  4. Madden NFL 19
  5. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
  6. Marvel’s Spider-Man
  7. Far Cry 5
  8. God of War 2018
  9. Monster Hunter: World
  10. Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey
  11. Grand Theft Auto V
  12. Mario Kart 8
  13. FIFA 19
  14. Battlefield V
  15. Super Mario Odyssey
  16. Call of Duty: WWII
  17. Dragon Ball FighterZ
  18. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
  19. Super Mario Party
  20. Pokemon: Lets Go Pikachu

These sales rankings could be off in some instances; The NPD Group lacked digital sales figures for some of the games. One game lacking digital sales data was Nintendo's smash hit Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. It's also possible that when missing digital sales data is figured in, Black Ops 4 might have beaten Red Dead Redemption 2 out for the top spot on the list. Red Dead had an absolutely massive launch at the end of 2018 racking up $752 million in sales during the first three days it was available. That performance put Red Dead 2 significantly above the biggest movie opening of 2018, Avengers: Infinity War, with its record-breaking $641 million opening weekend.