US PC Charts Apr. 5-11: Lich King retains crown

Second World of Warcraft expansion holds off Company of Heroes add-on from taking top slot in NPD's weekly recap.

New releases have been turning in a steady effort to unseat perennial chart topper World of Warcraft from the top of the NPD Group's weekly US PC chart in recent weeks, but the most noteworthy debut for the week of April 5-April 11 had no such luck. THQ and Relic's Company of Heroes: Tales of Valor debuted on NPD's PC chart in the third slot, and one explanation for its less-than-commanding retail performance could be its tepid critical reception.

World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King perched atop NPD's chart for the week, with fellow sales stalwart The Sims 2 Double Deluxe finishing second. World of Warcraft: Battle Chest--which includes the original massively multiplayer online role-playing game and its first expansion, The Burning Crusade--also turned in a solid performance, filling in the fourth slot.

Sega and The Creative Assembly's Empire: Total War has begun descending the charts, placing fifth, whereas Valve and Turtle Rock Studios' Left 4 Dead resurged to sixth. Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty isn't expected in the near future, but the Starcraft Battle Chest crept back into the charts to finish in the seventh slot. Rounding out the week's NPD chart toppers were The Sims 2 Apartment Life, World of Warcraft, and Nancy Drew: Ghost Dogs of Moon Lake.

Week of April 5-11, 2009*
TITLE - PUBLISHER - AVERAGE PRICE
1) World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King - Activision Blizzard - $36
2) The Sims 2 Double Deluxe - Electronic Arts - $20
3) Company of Heroes: Tales of Valor - THQ - $29
4) World of Warcraft: Battle Chest - Activision Blizzard - $35
5) Empire: Total War - Sega - $50
6) Left 4 Dead - Electronic Arts - $31
7) Starcraft Battle Chest - Activision Blizzard - $15
8) The Sims 2 Apartment Life - Electronic Arts - $20
9) World of Warcraft - Activision Blizzard - $20
10) Nancy Drew: Ghost Dogs of Moon Lake - Her Interactive - $7

* The above chart reflects the NPD Group's sales data drawn from a cross-sampling of retailers nationwide. Therefore, it does not include game sales through nontraditional channels such as digital distribution.

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Discussion

31 comments
Tsunami_pt
Tsunami_pt

@Humorguy_basic In case you don't know, if u cancel your WoW subscription, you're out of those numbers. Period.

Humorguy_basic
Humorguy_basic

Pizmovc, You say it like many others do. You assume 10 million subscribers mean 10 million players. But 10 million subscribers, based on what most experts think Blizzard means, really means 10 million sales. And over the years of WoW that doesn't sound as good, does it?! In other words, subscribe and you're counted. Leave and your still counted. No different than if 10 million of us bought the same crappy game and then threw it away. The publisher of that crappy game can still, unfortunately, tell the world 'we sold 10 million, so how bad could it have been?', and all us 10 million gamers who mistakenly bought it would just have forums and threads to complain, where nobody in the industry looks or cares about.

jsnake892002
jsnake892002

Ok the reason starcraftis so high is because of the 20 or so min video that came out about star craft 2. Everyone was like so snap i need to pick up starcraft hence why its in the top 10 list and theirs your answer people

Abed_1990
Abed_1990

wut! an 11 year old game taking the 7th spot! that's gotta mean something ;)

Inconnux
Inconnux

Its almost impossible to find boxed computer games in my town, I haven't bought one since Battlefield 2. Steam gets all my sales now. This list is meaningless as long as digital downloads aren't counted...

Pizmovc
Pizmovc

Flock yea! World of Warcratf is one of the best games ever. Proof? They got more then 10 million people playing it non-stop (say once a day), and not some games you get to the ending and then it is over. And shame on you who say that it is stupid game, 'cos its not! Proof? Well... I am not feeling like writing any more so, Google it :P

Humorguy_basic
Humorguy_basic

@zgreenwell, all you can do is make an educated guess. For example, when Fallout 3 came out, they said it sold 170,000 in the first week. It was released two days before the end of the month and it came in at No.1 in the PC chart for the month. So I worked out, on average, to sell 170,000 in a week is about 20,000 a day, so 2 days would be 40,000, so if you sell 40,000 PC games, you can come in a No.1 for the MONTH. So for the week, I would assume around 10,000 can get you to No.1 in a week. Which is not that many at all really, for a country the size of the U.S. A console friend told me he read in a magazine that it takes about 120,000 sales toget to No.1 in a week, so that would mean the PC market is about 1/12 of the console market, give or take. Hard to know for sure, because these charts don't give out unit sales.... Wonder why not....??? Dio you think it's because they are so high? No. neither do I.

gamer082009
gamer082009

Oh wow, another Sims expansion....sheesh. Sims 3 is coming soon, wtf!!

zgreenwell
zgreenwell

How much does a title have to sell to make it on this list?

pigman239
pigman239

starcraft? wow that's awesome

Nkenobi
Nkenobi

@ sanjeev3 As much as I love Blizzard products, I have to agree, I know to many people to ignorant of other amazing PC developers.

Ultramarine777
Ultramarine777

wow. Dawn of war 2 already gone from the top PC sellers. A pity.Such a great game that many should experience.

Humorguy_basic
Humorguy_basic

@Dante200X, Could we change the message to an honest one please? Let's stop asking why digital distribution is not included and ask why the digital distributors refuse to give out their sales numbers, meaning they can't be included!!!! I don't think digital distribution is as big as people think when you consider Rome Total War is number one in Direct 2 Drive and Steam had an indie casual game at number two last month I had never heard of! If these games (and indeed the original Starcraft being in this chart, showing sales can't be that high) are doing so well at digital distributors, I can't see how the numbers are that big. But the biggest reason I don't think Digital Distribution is doing huge business is simply if it was doing huge numbers it would be crowing about it! This is the games business after all - where else does a game company hide it's success under a bush?!

EmkayXx
EmkayXx

Damnn...Left 4 Dead is waay more cheaper in the US...it's still around 100$ here =/...It's sad really. PC games should have a lower price here in Australia, especially if it's been on the shelves for a while. On a positive note, I got a copy of Dead Space for 15$ at JB Hi-Fi..which I found quite surprising lol.

Ondoval
Ondoval

admiral_picard says "What a mediocre and humdrum list. Save for Left 4 Dead and Empire Total War that list is full of lame games. " You want to mean "what a mediocre list, aside from Blizzard and Relic titles the rest of titles are dull". Because just Starcraft is better than all of my games in PS3 and Xbox 360 COMBINED!

sanjeev3
sanjeev3

@maverick_76 The pc games market hasnt been bad, its just pure ignorance of the majority of WoW players' inability to comprehend that there is more than one game developer

admiral_picard
admiral_picard

What a mediocre and humdrum list. Save for Left 4 Dead and Empire Total War that list is full of lame games. Down with WoW, let's get a game that actually has some talent in its development and takes some brains to play on this list.

Dante200X
Dante200X

"Digital distribution needs to be tracked asap, as soon as people realize how many sales are made through that a lot of people will change their views on whether or not PC gaming is going down." This, seriously. It's been a while since people started saying "why isn't digital distribution counted in these reports?" yet it is STILL not counted apparently... If L4D is 6 already, it would have to be around 4 or so if Steam sales were counted.

VenomRitual
VenomRitual

your average prices are WAY OFF. target, walmart, best buy, amazon, gamestop all have the lich king at $30 and L4D at $40

nurse_tsunami
nurse_tsunami

Hmm....I wonder why Blizzard has record profits quarter after quarter? Oh yeah, their games are always in the top 10! I can't wait for Starcraft 2 and the Sims 3. It is going to be a good year for gaming :)

mrklorox
mrklorox

Yes, DD should be tracked. Also MMOs should be tracked independently from the standard retail fair.

ColdfireTrilogy
ColdfireTrilogy

Digital distribution needs to be tracked asap, as soon as people realize how many sales are made through that a lot of people will change their views on whether or not PC gaming is going down.

johnny27
johnny27

they dont include digital distribution which is bigger then retail and im not sure if they include online purchases from say amazon. and this is only U.S sales which is a small market for pc games.

maverick_76
maverick_76

I have to admit that StarCraft being up there still is awesome, but also a testament to how bad the PC market has gotten, I mean, you as a business don't like having a game that has been out for over 10 years still topping charts, Unless the game is still selling Millions (not the case). This case is because PC games sell very little compared to consoles, and I hope that PC will make a comeback at some point.

Csalbertcs
Csalbertcs

Hehe, the more new people start playing Starcraft now, the easier multiplayer will become for veterans. Bwhahaha. -.-

kkevguy47k
kkevguy47k

i wonder what would happen if wow was on steam

CodyTG
CodyTG

I absolutely love that Starcraft still makes this list. One of THE BEST RTS's of all time.

RinTinTinVan
RinTinTinVan

10) Nancy Drew: Ghost Dogs of Moon Lake Enough said.

pvtdonut54
pvtdonut54

this list is weird. How can Sims 2 DD out sell Empire and L4D (excluding Digital sales)? I am also surprised to see Starcraft still in the top 10

halokila
halokila

can't beleive how popular wow is