US PC Charts Mar. 15-21: Empire: Total War fortifies top slot

Sega and Creative Assembly's historical RTS action title retains pole position in the NPD Group's weekly sales recap.

Sega and The Creative Assembly's Stormrise, which shipped for the PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 this week, is, according to critics, a "broken mess." Luckily for the publisher-developer duo, the much-better-reviewed Empire: Total War remains a top-selling title, as the historical real-time strategy/action hybrid title retained its position atop The NPD Group's PC sales chart for the week of March 15 to March 21.

Slots two through eight will undoubtedly look familiar to anyone who follows NPD's weekly PC charts. Blizzard's World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King again found itself immediately behind Empire, with WOW: Battle Chest and the stand-alone original placing fifth and sixth. EA's The Sims 2 Double Deluxe and Apartment Life worked their way into the third and seventh slots, while Spore sprouted at eight. THQ's Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II continued its strong sales run, placing fourth on the week.

Take-Two and Firaxis' Civilization IV, which enjoyed ample success upon its release for the PC in 2005, slipped back into NPD's charts with a ninth-place finish. Big Fish Games' adventure title Mystery Case Files: Return to Ravenhearst rounded out the week's accounting.

Week of March 15 - March 21, 2009*
1) Empire: Total War (PC)
2) World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King (PC)
3) The Sims 2 Double Deluxe (PC)
4) Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II (PC)
5) World of Warcraft: Battle Chest (PC)
6) World of Warcraft (PC)
7) The Sims 2 Apartment Life (PC)
8) Spore (PC)
9) Civilization IV (PC)
10) Mystery Case Files: Return to Ravenhearst (PC)

* 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

28 comments
franbatista123
franbatista123

Well... there is something i dont understand... this is based on both Game bought on store and digital sales or just bought on store? If its both, empire: total war should remain in the top for a long time i think...

invictuslemming
invictuslemming

In similar fashion to DoW2, you got to hand it to these games that make the top of the list, knowing full well that they are Steam downloadable and those numbers aren't even being counted toward this rating. Kudos to these guys for making an enjoyable game. I'm currently swapping between DoW and total war, can't get enough of either of them. (My WoW friends are complaining that I don't play enough with them anymore, I see this as a positive thing haha).

Puckhog04
Puckhog04

@ Cowbie: 1. This only includes retail, not DD which accounts for about 50% of PC total games sales. If DD were included like D2D and Steam you'd have a much different list most likely including Left 4 Dead, Fallout 3, Crysis Warhead, etc. 2. Much like the Wii (which has more casual appeal than any platform to date), games like the Sims are going to be up there because of casuals. As for your "quality of games being released by the PC community the past few years are abysmal", how about Sins of a Solar Empire, Empire Total War, Crysis Warhead (still huge amounts playing Crysis Wars online), Warhammer 40k: DoW2, Neverwinter Nights 2 expansions released in the past 2 years, etc. I can go on and on. The PC community of Developers is so large there's always many things to chose from in terms of upcoming games. Civilization IV is a classic game and, unlike consoles, alot of PC games have huge followings and communities that will never die (such as Starcraft, Diablo, NVWN, WoW, and Civilization). Before you go bashing the quality of PC games in general you should probably rethink your comments while actually taking a look at what has been released in the past few years. Because, frankly, you don't have a clue what you are talking about.

R4V4N4
R4V4N4

Spore??? why I cant stand this game I never should have got the pre-order and just got vampire the masquerade or mask of the betrayer

Inconnux
Inconnux

why do people buy crappy bill wright games?!?!?!

Destroy3r3
Destroy3r3

Actually, it's not difficult to get on top ten. It's hard to stay there...

Cowbie
Cowbie

I'm not surprised by Civ IV's appearance. The quality of games being released by the PC community the past few years are abysmal. None of them have the depth and quality to have any staying power, hence older games like Civ IV and the Sims still being in the top 10.

Slaveways
Slaveways

i wish they could provide us with some actual numbers.... would it be that hard to do gamespot?

tjdeep_2007
tjdeep_2007

EA AND BLIZZARD BOTH R DOMINATING PC SALES CHARTS FROM AGES

Gladestone1
Gladestone1

Goes to show you if you have a good game..It can sell any time of year..Take that to the bank ea an stuff it..Love it..Two great games out there making it big an its not christmas...You dont need the holidays to sell games..Empire an dawn of war two great stradegy games..

Nxss-effa-sim
Nxss-effa-sim

I'm glad to see Empire: Total War at the top. Let’s hope these sales are sustainable. I believe Medieval II was at the top for the first month during release, when most of the hardcore fans purchased it. Then it fell off the charts. ETW is a good game but let’s just say it’s a good thing CA is actively developing it.

jrabbit99
jrabbit99

Wow, I can't believe that Civ 4 is still in the top 10, that game is so old!

VenomRitual
VenomRitual

another month goes by where the NPD completely ignores 20million steam accounts as well as other digital sales. digital albums are now counted in music sales, why not games?

BlueBirdTS
BlueBirdTS

I wish the NPD also included digital distribution sales (GOG, Steam, Impulse, D2D, etc.). I also heard that NPD statistics don't include some major retailers such as Walmart.

ChaosStar
ChaosStar

@the_real_VIP They have a sales list, though. This also doesn't list numbers, just rankings. Go into Steam and click "Top Sellers."

the_real_VIP
the_real_VIP

@ ChaosStar: Valve never releases it's Steam's sales data.

daabulls23
daabulls23

I wonder when they will begin to release sales data that includes digital distribution. I bet that would shake up the standings a little, although E:TW would probably still be #1.

ChaosStar
ChaosStar

Start listening to Steam sales if you want reputability with PC gamers, GS.

elozl
elozl

nice to see another game instead of wow on the top sales

naval
naval

Good to see both DoW 2 and E: TW doing so well

robert430
robert430

Glad DAW II is still going strong after more than a month. great game and a must buy for any strategy fan. Empire is great but needs more fixes as of now.

dan-rofl-copter
dan-rofl-copter

Its a great game love it, have not had the time in a week to sit down and play but 2 weeks off so....

Wolls
Wolls

I wonder if E:TW will still be there when i get a good enough PC to play it

coruscant
coruscant

Slightly perplexed by Civ IV's appearance, but then again it's still one of the best strategy games ever.

jazilla
jazilla

LOL 6 of the Top Ten are Warcraft or Will Wright titles. Hilarious.

Franko_3
Franko_3

Totally deserved this first place. Stormrise can go die under a train full of toxic waste.Long live total wars!

Darkon_X
Darkon_X

I'm glad Total War is up there, it's really a good game, too bad my PC can't play it :( First BTW FTW.