UK game sales hit record high in Q1

British gamers buy up in bulk, with a record £418.4 million worth of leisure software shipped.

by

UK gamers are voting with their wallets like never before, with sales at record highs following record periods in 2007 and previous years. According to data released today by the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association (ELSPA) and compiled by Chart-Track, the UK games industry racked up a total of £418.4 million ($828.9 million) in software sales in the first quarter of 2008.

It appears that Nintendo is the real winner of the increased sales, scooping up 37 percent of all unit sales thanks to the success of its Wii and DS offerings, which took the top two spots. The PC was the third most popular platform for game sales, followed by Microsoft's Xbox 360. The report also shows Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games to be the most popular game in the first quarter.

ELSPA's director general, Paul Jackson, used the release of the figures as an opportunity to petition the government for increased industry support. "The UK continues to blaze a trail in terms of creativity yet over the last few years it is becoming apparent that some talent is being lured away by more attractive prospects overseas," he said in a statement today. "As it stands, the UK is already down to fourth place from third as the world's creative centre for games. It is time the Government recognised the massive financial contribution we make to the UK economy, especially when compared to the film, TV and music industries."

As previously reported on GameSpot, the UK games industry employs approximately 25,000 people and contributes £2 billion ($3.96 billion) per year to the country's economy.

Discussion

79 comments
adamosmaki
adamosmaki

pc 3rd so pc is dying? and i m sure that they didnt include digital distribution sales. Probably pc would be 1st id they did that

Irve
Irve

IronBass : oh .. that reminds me i've still got killer7 to play !! i've stopped myself buying a PS360 because i've got tons of games to play .. but i'm tempted because some of the games are stunning with the Wii i'm looking at graphics that are only as good as my Xbox and as for the motion control .. well it's great for party games ... rubbish for most other games..

Guts5
Guts5

Foffity You make an outstanding point. Even here in the USA we really don't know which games are selling the most. Our largest trade-in/used game selling is Gamestop and I don't believe they post the "used" games sold data. I'd love to see that data. The new sales + that data would show what titlle really is the top seller. I usually buy games used, because I have sooooo many games to try and finish. I'm generally not desperate to have a title when it first comes out. Right now I'm trying to finsh 3 different games, to trade em in, so I can use the credit to pickup my reserved copy of GTAIV. I'm forcing myself to finish em. FYI Overlord is selling new for $19.99. It's one of the funniest most fun games I've played in a long time and feel sad I never knew it. It's a 3rd person Action/RTS puzzle game. Yeah, unique and fun to me. You control yourself with the left stick and your troops with the right. If you haven't tried it, pick it up people.

IronBass
IronBass

Irve, your point is understandable. I , an so called "N-Fan", with some really good games on my Wii (Mario Galaxy, No More Heroes, Metroid Prime 3, etc.) bought a X-Box 360. It feels so good to play Splinter Cell (Double Agent) with amazing graphics...

Irve
Irve

well , personally i don't mind if there is a 50 - 50 split for current gen .. i'll get both at some point sorry to negate the Wii .. personally i just don't see the point ! i'm sure i'll get one in a couple of years and finally play SM G .. but i've not exactly played Metriod prime 1 or 2 much and while my GC works i don't need a new version of it.

Foffity
Foffity

Thing is, that's only counting new sales. I work at a games retailer in the UK, and people certainly do buy more 360 and Wii, but they also trade them in a lot more when compared to PS3 games. PS3 owners also buy pre-owned games at a greater rate than PS3, as far as I can tell.

IronBass
IronBass

The Nintendo reign seems untouchable... the UK (and Northamerica) seem to be Microsoft's territories. Sony tries to survive with Japan's and Europa's support. But Nintendo rule on them, too.

Avenger1324
Avenger1324

PC game sales are more than both xbox 360 and PS3 I think GTAIV is planned to make half the sales of Q1 in its first week alone.

Irve
Irve

I'm thinking that the PC sales would include things like Virus scan software to push it above the 360 and PS3 ... i also doubt that the PS3 is that far behind the 360 to not warrant a mention ... it seems a very even market here in the UK.

pourya_ahmadian
pourya_ahmadian

yah you are so right;becuase that is what you do not want to recognize;the XBOX360 and wii are above the little ps3;

K_M82
K_M82

PC is still very popular in Europe. That's good to hear. At least now I know that publisher would continue to make PC games (at least for European market).

Rhubarb9
Rhubarb9

Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games ey? shows that ratings/reviews have nothing to do with sales

theemptyquiver
theemptyquiver

France.....I wouldn't have guessed that if you had given me ten tries. It is interesting though.

mmarsh1972
mmarsh1972

Let's see, Japan, USA...what's number 3? ---------------------------------------------------------------- #3 is France. Ubisoft, Infogrames, Vivendi games (which owns Sierra on Line, Blizzard, Activsion. Atari (owned by Infrgrames) Lots of others...

Guts5
Guts5

Bjarkekayser No problem buddy. Shoot I'm starting to notice an interesting thing with games in general. To me the 3rd party developers are getting better and better. Heck it was just one generation ago when most 3rd party games were mediocre and Sony and MS relied on themselves for good games. With a few exceptions. In that past 12 months the best selling game of all is a freaking 3rd party game. COD4 with 8.3 million. I never thought that would happen. Look at the gaming world now. Resistance vs Halo... and then along comes COD4 and it's the most played online game. Crushing the other 2 with their combined PS3 and 360 audience. MGS3 and then along comes Splinter Cell and most recently Assassin's Creed, Redifining the "Stealth" action genre. MGSIV will be good for sure, but how much better than Assassin's Creed? Gears of War... then here comes Army of Two. The reviews of that game don't make any sense. It's Gears of War with new gameplay elements. Sure it's not as polished and "cool" in some ways, but they nailed the gameplay. AO2 is of course on both platforms. Still not done. Ratchet & Clank, Mario style fun... then along comes the LEGO series. Bringing fun platforming gaming to all three systems. One more for fun. Motorstorm and then along comes DIRT and MX ATV Untamed. Of course 2 of those titles are on both platforms. I mean really. These 3rd party licenses are getting really good and the gap between 3rd party and 1st party/exlusive development times is much much smaller this gen. Well, to me anyways.

Bjarkekayser
Bjarkekayser

ye i get your point, sorry. i just misinterpretated your message

Guts5
Guts5

Bjarkekayser "At any rate. I'll keep saying this. All three companies have different primary audiences. I said primary, not ONLY." Don't forget that one part of what I said. I knew I left off a ton of games. I was mentioning a few of the ones that got generally A+ reviews and are usually unique. 360 doesn't have a platform game at all and Ratchet & Clank sorta is. PS3 cornered the market on that type of gameplay. Very Wise decision in my opinion. 360 doesn't really have any games you could just call fun like that. It's not really my cup of tea, but it's a big deal. I don't enjoy platformers anymore, not even Mario Galaxy. MS really does keep their target audience really narrow. PS3 has a wider audience, but of course won't have as many titles focused in one directions like MS. Calm down 360 owners, it's not a rip or attack. It's their marketing strategy. They do buy licenses for other types of games, but their primary A+ groups do games for that audience. Sony is trying to compete a little bit with MS for their focus area and Nintendo for theirs with Ratchet & Clank. MS and Nintendo don't compete with each other at all. When you start mentioned future titles that are soon to be here... the audiences widen up a little bit, because they already have their primary focus group on board. Now they try and bring in others.

isahunt
isahunt

"That plus PC's being way over priced and inefficent because of the memory hog OS..." Whoa, you know like... NOTHING about what you just said.

swyg
swyg

You can go to the Chart-Track website and look at every weekly chart this year. It seems to me like Gamespot goofed and meant the PS3 was third place. I'm sure they did

Bjarkekayser
Bjarkekayser

Guts5 i agree with ya most of the time, but the argument that PS3 is mainly a FF, LittleBigPlanet and Rachet & Clank. i dont know what to say, im just a little tired of listening to that, i mean. What about Resistance, Uncharted and MTG4, Wipeout, GT5, Motorstorm, Tekken, SOCOM (i think). They arent exactly in the FF and Ratchet and Clank genre. And im not a fan, i dont wanna yell about the PS3 is far superior or sumthing, im just a lil' annoyed over the argument that PS is for Rachet & Clank and FF.

Irve
Irve

mysterylobster: indeed ... consider all those sales of COD4 and the sims expansion pack number 15 .... but it is a stange one .. on the chart trac web site there are certanly more rankings of 360 an PS3 titles than PC ones ... but maybe the volume of budget titles onPC puts it up here ... who knows !! i just don't seethe PS3 having more sales over the 360 unless the nmbers for GT:prologue are just Way igher than anything else if your right and it's a typeo i'll be surprised but not shocked

peeweeshift
peeweeshift

prety good game. im one of those people:D

mysterylobster
mysterylobster

"no .. i think that's right... the Ps3 certainly isn't outselling the 360 in game units so the PC must be in third place." It would also mean that the PC is beating the 360 in software sales, which a quick look at any of the weekly charts will tell you is not true. I expect Gamespot to correct this soon enough.

Irve
Irve

mysterylobster: no .. i think that's right... the Ps3 certainly isn't outselling the 360 in game units so the PC must be in third place.

mysterylobster
mysterylobster

You can go to the Chart-Track website and look at every weekly chart this year. It seems to me like Gamespot goofed and meant the PS3 was third place.

swyg
swyg

Now show hardware sales

Guts5
Guts5

"Gribb85 Just goes to show that all the worrys about PC game sales are relatively ill informed. Trailing after the DS and Wii, and above both the PS3 and 360 means that PC gaming is in a good state, not the best it has been, but certainly not the worst." ONLY in the UK. It's so far at the botton in the US it's almost sad, but not really. No one in their right mind would want to develop for a PC. Spend many times longer trying to code for all the different equipment possibilities and OS issues... That plus PC's being way over priced and inefficent because of the memory hog OS... PC is being phased out for a lot of very good reasons. Well not really. PS3s and 360s are PCs, but with standard equipment. As the commerical says... BRILLIANT!!!

Gribb85
Gribb85

Just goes to show that all the worrys about PC game sales are relatively ill informed. Trailing after the DS and Wii, and above both the PS3 and 360 means that PC gaming is in a good state, not the best it has been, but certainly not the worst.

Hellmonkey012
Hellmonkey012

It doesn't surprise me that Nintendo outsold its competitors...again. But what did surprise me was the game that was #1: Mario and Sonic at the Olympics. CadeFlyer: You are dead wrong.

jtthegame316
jtthegame316

PC versions go for cheaper than console virsions that is why pc games are popular however personally i don't buy for pc cause i prefure the hassle free console gaming of my 360 and wii. To AgentA-Mi6 i would i would say this is about right cause i know more gamers with 360 or wii than ps3 gamers here in the uk. i feel the industry needs for microsoft or nintendo to get on top this time anyway cause one company having a monoploy is not good.

surppo
surppo

i think the 360 probably did sell more games than the ps3 due to the larger library of games. thats spin people

AgentA-Mi6
AgentA-Mi6 ranger

:? The has to something wrong here, Where is the Ps3?

artson1966
artson1966

Darkride. I know, I am busting your B????s, lol I track you posts remember. i am quite aware of your posts. I just wanted to change the seriousness of the posts today.

Guts5
Guts5

This is exactly why world wide sales mean absolutly nothing to a gamer or should mean nothing. Games that are really popular in America do very poorly in general around the world. GTA, Halo, God of War, all American sports games, and many many more... all do very poorly in Asia. The tend to do a bit better in Europe than Asia, but not great. You want to know what the best selling game is? The Sims... over 100 million and counting with expansions. I admit to dabbling back in it some years back out of curiosity. At any rate. I'll keep saying this. All three companies have different primary audiences. I said primary, not ONLY. MS goes after the Halo, Gears of War, Ninja Gaiden, Forza 2, Mass Effect type audience. Sony goes after the FF, Racthet & Clank, Little Big Planet type audience and their main focus is generally games that do well in Asia... Nintendo goes with the Mario platform, Mario Kart, wii fit, audience. Notice I said this is what the companies number 1 focus is, not their only focus. Summary... I could care less what people in Asia buy or the UK. As long as companies keep making games I like keep on being made I'll be happy. From this point on. When I see a fanboi spouting off about "winning" the non-existent console war... I'll give the short version. So, your a fan of the GI Joes vs Barbies war? Yeah, they sure do go after the audiences with their "similar" products. LOL

darkride66
darkride66

artson1966 said "Darkride, your arguements entertain me. Glad to see your up on monetary policies aswell. " You may not guess this from the amount that I've been posting lately, but the financial services industry is my profession. :) I was a trader for 6 years and a broker now for 2. Of course that doesn't make me any kind of economics wizard, but a professional knows where his knowledge is lacking and when to difer to other professionals. Doesn't really help me argue videogames any better though.

artson1966
artson1966

of course it doesnt hurt the economy when you have some great titles to entise these buying trends of the un confident consumers. Gas is i a must have comidity where as games unless they are just the triple a grand production type will contiue to sell like wild flowers. no matter how bad teh economy is poeple need to relaxe with some form of entertaiment. Such is why the movie and gaming indrustries all gain market share during slow economic times similair to drug companies and personal products we can always count of people getting sick or needing to clean themselves or thier homes even graveyards continue to grow seeing as life goes on even in bad times. Get my meaning?

moh2in
moh2in

"'The report also shows Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games to be the most popular game in the first quarter." What the hell.....!? What happened to Super Smash Bros. Brawl?

mamad_raiss
mamad_raiss

CadeFlayer Instead of PC they meant PS3. The PS3 has sold more than the 360 for every week of 2008 in the UK, even after the 360 had a price drop. .... proof , and Why gamespot release a false news? or maybe you think it was a mistake , if you see they name Microsoft Xbox360 , so if they wanted to mention PS3 .It should have been Sony Pc.LOL

markharris31
markharris31

Darkride is actually pretty right about this. If you know what a recession truly entails then you know the world hasn't hit one yet, nor is it likely to do so. The economy has slowed on banking losses but what most people don't realize is that consumer confidence is usually what tends to drive recessions. The media scare tactics that destroy consumer confidence hurt the situation way more then they help us by "keeping us informed". Companies need capital, and when the market turns down it is the best time to buy in, not get out. However, with all the media crying doom and gloom all day you just scare people into either pulling assets when they're needed the most or not buying in when you can get bargains for yourself and infuse industry with the capital they need to offset losses. Regardless, it seems the video game industry is bucking most consumer trends with it's rather impressive year over year growth.

ganon92
ganon92

In the UK, gaming is either socially unacceptable or it's nothing more than a past-time. In other words we're a nation(s) of casuals. The public is susceptible to marketing campaigns. Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games is probably the most advertised game right now here apart from Guitar Hero and perhaps in recent days GTA IV (not that that's a bad thing entirely) and so it sells well. Of course there are those who lie between casual and hardcore and few less 'hardcore' gamers here but they are far and few between. The single most irritating issue here however, is how everyone seems to be obsessed with FIFA. I just don't see the reasoning why it is that these pawns are tricked into buying what is essentially the SAME game they bought the year previous. Whilst they look down on those who buy quality games of which took more than 3 months to concoct, such as for instance, Metal Gear, Halo, Mario, Zelda, Final Fantasy, etc.

Edcase
Edcase

So where is the ps3...wot did it sell nothing or is this another gamespot fanboyism lol....let the burn BEGIIIIN

x-2tha-z
x-2tha-z

The gaming taste of most people here in the UK is terrible. Mario and Sonic top seller? I wish someone would educate the british public and show them what a good game is so they start buying games like Ninja Gaiden and Okami.

comeonthehoops
comeonthehoops

CadeFlayer they were talking about game sales...

comeonthehoops
comeonthehoops

casual gaming runs rife in the uk... i hate seeing bloody carnival games outselling masterpieces like mass effect and the orange box every week. it makes me cry a little inside.

CadeFlayer
CadeFlayer

Instead of PC they meant PS3. The PS3 has sold more than the 360 for every week of 2008 in the UK, even after the 360 had a price drop.