The NPD Group today released United States sales data for August 2013, revealing Nintendo's 3DS was the top-selling platform during the month, outpacing the PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3.
Nintendo did not reveal specific sales data for the 3DS, but Microsoft chimed in to say the Xbox 360 sold 96,000 units during the month, down sharply from the 193,000 systems sold during August 2012. Total Xbox 360 platform revenue (hardware, software, accessories) was $213 million, the most for any platform in the United States, Microsoft said.
Sony did not reveal August US sales figures for the PS3 or PS Vita.
Overall, US hardware sales were down 40 percent year-over-year to $90.8 million and every platform saw a decline. "We hope to see hardware sales improve with the launch of the Xbox One and PS4 in November," NPD Group analyst Liam Callahan said in a statement.
Overall, total industry sales rose 1 percent to $521 million, though this number only reflects about half of the true market spend on games during the month, Callahan said.
"These sales figures represent new physical retail sales of hardware, software, and accessories, which account for roughly 50 percent of the total consumer spend on games," he said. "When taking into account our preliminary estimate for other physical format sales in August such as used and rentals at $178 million, and our estimate for digital format sales including full game and add-on content downloads including micro-transactions, subscriptions, mobile apps, and the consumer spend on social network games at $528 million, the total consumer spend in August is just over $1.2 billion."
Excluding January 2013, which posted gains due to an extra reporting week versus January 2012, the last time retail sales were up overall year-over-year was October 2011.
Switching to software, this category jumped 21 percent to $305 million, compared to $253 million last year. This was principally driven by the shift of Madden NFL 25 into the NPD Group's August reporting period and the release of Saints Row IV, Disney Infinity, and Splinter Cell: Blacklist, Callahan said.
"Collectively, August 2013 launches made up an astounding 58 percent of overall dollar sales for the month and 41 percent of units sales, which compared to 24 percent of dollar sales and 15 percent of unit sales that August 2012 launches represented in that month," he said. "Due to a greater percentage of sales stemming from newer games at full price and have higher priced collector's editions, overall software average pricing grew by 25 percent."
Callahan said it is "remarkable" that Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 sales grew over 50 percent during the month and were only down 1 percent year-over-year considering the arrival of the Xbox One and PlayStation is just months away.
Madden NFL 25 was the top-seller during August, followed by Saints Row IV and Disney Infinity. The full list of top August titles is below.
The accessories category rose 7 percent to $136.7 million for the month. The NPD Group said with the launch of Disney Infinity, which includes physical toys, the research group has begun categorizing these sales--along with Skylanders sales--within the accessories category as Interactive Gaming Toys.
"Sales of Video Game and Subscription cards were also strong in August 2013, and when combined with Interactive Gaming Toys, these two types of accessories represented over 50 percent of dollar sales this month," Callahan said.
AUGUST US GAME SALES (August 4-August 31, 2013)
OVERALL DOLLAR SALES
Total retail sales: $521 (1%)
Non-PC hardware: $90.8 million (-40%)
Non-PC software: $293.4 (23%)
Accessories: $136.7 (7%)
Total software: $305 million (21%)
TOP 10 GAMES FOR AUGUST 2013
Title (Platforms) - Publisher
1. Madden NFL 25 - (X360, PS3) - Electronic Arts
2. Saints Row IV - (X360, PS3, PC) - Deep Silver
3. Disney Infinity - (X360, Wii, PS3, Wii U, 3DS ) - Disney Interactive
4. Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Blacklist - (X360, PS3, Wii U, PC) - Ubisoft
5. Minecraft - (X360) - Microsoft
6. Mario & Luigi: Dream Team - (3DS) - Nintendo
7. NCAA Football 14 - (X360, PS3) - Electronic Arts
8. PayDay 2 - (X360, PS3) - 505 Games
9. Final Fantasy XIV Online: A Realm Reborn - (PS3, PC) - Square Enix
10. Pikmin 3 - (Wii U) - Nintendo