2016's Best-Selling Games in the US Revealed

Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare comes on top in December and 2016 overall.

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The NPD group has released its monthly US sales report for December and announced the top-selling games for the entire year.

This report comes with a new disclaimer, which notes it "provides both online and retail sales results for new physical video game products, as well as a subset of full-game digital downloads from participating publishers in NPD's digital panel. It is not intended to cover total market/total consumer spend."

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With that in mind, we have gotten more information than usual. In addition to the typical list of top-selling games (in terms of dollar sales) across all platforms, it's also provided platform-specific lists for December. This shows that, while Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare and Final Fantasy XV were the top two games overall, the latter was No. 3 on Xbox One, but No. 1 on PS4. Infinite Warfare and Battlefield 1 (the No. 3 game on PS4) were the top two games on Xbox One.

The report also includes a look at the top-selling games for the entire year in the US, and Infinite Warfare--even with its sales dip--unsurprisingly came out on top. What might stand out most in this list are the two games to make the top 10 that released prior to 2016: Grand Theft Auto V (No. 6) and Call of Duty: Black Ops III (No. 8).

Total video game sales--combining hardware, software, and accessories--were down 15 percent year-over-year from $3.2 billion to $2.7 billion in the US during December. Hardware saw the biggest drop, going from $1.24 billion in December 2015 to $994.9 million in December 2016.

"[T]he release of the Xbox One S and the PlayStation 4 Pro did not generate dollar-spending growth," said NPD analyst Sam Naji. "Although the combined [average retail price] for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 systems decreased by 15 percent, consumers bought seven percent fewer units."

In recent months, Sony has ceased to provide comments on NPD reports. We learned last week that PS4 outsold Xbox One in the US during December, while Microsoft boasted that its console was the top-seller over the second half of 2016. Today's NPD report added that Xbox One sales were up 10 percent in December compared with December 2015.

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In a statement shared with GameSpot, Nintendo talked up the performance of 3DS (while making no mention of Wii U). It didn't share specific hardware sales numbers, but it did say 3DS enjoyed year-over-year growth for the seventh month in a row during December. It also noted that 3DS was the only game system to sell more in 2016 than it did in 2015. NES Classic Edition sales were up 14 percent in December as compared with November (when it launched), according to the NPD Group.

As for software, first-party 3DS games sold 7.3 million units in the US during the final three months of 2016. Nintendo said this makes it the best-selling quarter for 3DS software sales ever. It attributed this to new releases Pokemon Sun/Moon, Super Mario Maker, and Mario Party: Star Rush, as well as older titles like Mario Kart 7 and Super Smash Bros. Sun and Moon have combined to sell 4.5 million units in the US so far.

You can see all of the lists NPD shared below. For a comparison, you can check out the best-selling games in November 2016 here and all of 2015 here.

These lists are ranked in terms of dollar sales and combine physical sales with digital sales from select publishers (notable absences include Nintendo and sales through Battle.net) in the US. Games marked with an asterisk are those that don't include digital sales. December's charts cover November 27 through December 31, while the full-year chart runs from January 3 through December 31.

2016 Top 10 Games

  1. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
  2. Battlefield 1
  3. The Division
  4. NBA 2K17
  5. Madden NFL 17
  6. Grand Theft Auto V
  7. Overwatch (no Battle.net sales)
  8. Call of Duty: Black Ops III
  9. FIFA 17
  10. Final Fantasy XV

December 2016 Top 10 Games

  1. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
  2. Final Fantasy XV
  3. Battlefield 1
  4. Madden NFL 17
  5. NBA 2K17
  6. Watch Dogs 2
  7. Grand Theft Auto V
  8. Pokemon: Sun*
  9. FIFA 17
  10. Pokemon: Moon*

December 2016 Top 10 Xbox One Games

  1. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
  2. Battlefield 1
  3. Final Fantasy XV
  4. Madden NFL 17
  5. NBA 2K17
  6. Watch Dogs 2
  7. Titanfall 2
  8. Grand Theft Auto V
  9. Forza Horizon 3
  10. FIFA 17

December 2016 Top 10 PS4 Games

  1. Final Fantasy XV
  2. Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
  3. Battlefield 1
  4. Watch Dogs 2
  5. NBA 2K17
  6. Madden NFL 17
  7. Grand Theft Auto V
  8. FIFA 17
  9. The Last Guardian*
  10. Titanfall 2

December 2016 Top 10 Wii U Games

  1. Paper Mario: Color Splash*
  2. Pokken Tournament*
  3. Minecraft*
  4. Just Dance 2017
  5. Skylanders Imaginators
  6. Super Smash Bros.*
  7. Super Mario Maker*
  8. Lego Dimensions
  9. Splatoon*
  10. New Super Mario Bros. U + New Super Luigi U*

December 2016 Top 10 Portable Games

  1. Pokemon: Sun*
  2. Pokemon: Moon*
  3. Super Mario Maker*
  4. Pokemon: Sun & Moon dual pack*
  5. Mario Party: Star Rush*
  6. Super Smash Bros.*
  7. Mario Kart 7*
  8. Kirby: Planet Robobot*
  9. Pokemon Omega Ruby*
  10. Pokemon X*

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JimClirad

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Without Pokemon, the 3DS wouldn't have made it at all. Not only that, but these other games aren't carrying it. Why Nintendo thinks they can manage 2 devices with portability is just fooling themselves, you see how low 3DS sales really are when they're compared to the technically smaller install base of home console. It's just a matter of time that the PS4 outsells 3DS, and no longer can Nintendo claim the 3DS is this hot item, software shows its top 2 games barely crack the top 10 in the month!

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Shaukdotdj

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There's no way this list can be accurate. it contradicts every NPD, PSN, XBL, Steam, & Amazon sales chart out there. Infinite Warfare taking the first place spot for the entire year despite a November release is just utter garbage.

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iskaroth

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Really? GTA5 still in top 10? For me it was solid 7/10 game, nothing more.

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ViolentXdesign

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@iskaroth: When was the last time you played GTAV? The game is several years old but rockstar has consistently released fun and interesting updates. The import/export update has some of the best vehicles in the game. I don't think I've laughed so hard playing a game before. With a full party GTAV and BF1 are my go to multi-player games.

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Malaphisis

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sad, nobody even plays IW, its all b ops 3 still lol. I got suckered into buying it at $60 though!

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swavo13

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Paper Mario being no. 1 is terrible.

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SonyPony4eva

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Edited By SonyPony4eva

This is exactly why The gaming industry is in shambles. New and smaller ip's that are worth every penny won't ever get the recognition they deserve because of copy and pasted games like COD selling like hot cakes. Also it causes other gaming companies to dumb down their games and show minimal effort because they look at as "COD doesn't have to try in order to sell, so why should we?" I'm glad the Last Guardian is on the list, 9/10 people that played it said that it was awesome including myself. Some bugs need to be fixed though.

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Bond_Villain

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You mean, No Man's Sky didn't make it on the list?

LOL, just kidding hahahaha

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sakaiXx

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The crazier part is Final fantasy XV charting on xbox one.

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brunorr

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omg CoD still sells like hotcakes... No wonder the amount of dumbed down games everywhere.

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DLaney34

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Edited By DLaney34

Once again, take these numbers with a grain of salt, as they are essentially estimates.

"as well as a subset of full-game digital downloads from participating publishers in NPD's digital panel. It is not intended to cover total market/total consumer spend.""

EA/Origin don't participate/share their digital numbers with the NPD (based on what i've read on internal bf/ea forums). So these numbers are literally off by millions. It's possible Battlefield 1 actually lead, as EA reports it's its most successful digital download ever for both PC and consoles.

LOL.

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clonewar2

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the console gaming biz must be doing pretty badly, it's a declining business. And, also no exclusives charted in the top 10 list! where's uncharted 4, Ratchet, Forza, Gears 4 on these lists? people don't care about exclusives anymore.

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Creepywelps

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@clonewar2: You mean exclusives sold less than multiplats that have a much larger user base to sell to?!?!? Somebody alert the press!!!

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WarFox89

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Well, US selected their next president to be Tronald Dump so it's not surprising to me that Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare is the number 1 selling game there.

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tarheelsforever

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Edited By tarheelsforever

@WarFox89: i agree. im American as well and trump is a lower life form.

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JoannaDark360

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@WarFox89: I live in the U.S..... and I HATE TRUMP!!!

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Rolento25

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@joannadark360: You should go burn something down.

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BeantownSean

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Edited By BeantownSean

@WarFox89:

No doubt the largest purchasers are the console crowed.

Top-10-Highest-Grossing-Console-and-PC-Digital-Games

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Noshotskill

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A bad year for gaming indeed. Can't wait for some new titles in 2017.

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PCPS4XB

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@noshotskill: really? I'm still backed up from 2016

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Noshotskill

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@pcps4xb: I'm mostly referring to the lack of new IPs and abundance of yearly sequels.

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TitanG1

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All the hate and boycotting of Call of Duty Infinite Warfare, and look what happened lol. Guess people couldn't stay away.

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DLaney34

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@titang1: Most consumers don't follow youtube, and or like or dislike anything. They just buy what they are told, the mainstream crowd will buy anything. It's impressive to me, that a decent IP, Battlefield 1 is doing so well. DICE is finally competing, but that's also a problem with accessibility, battlefield 1 is very easy compared to previous titles.

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drumjod

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I'd be more interested to know the number of NES Classics sold, which I'm reading on Google was 196,000 in the US in November, up 14% in December, which is still not enough produced... And I still can't get one unless I overpay the scalpers on Ebay.

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deactivated-5893d17ed65b4

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Not a surprising Tales. With roughly 80 million current gen consoles in the Wild, a single console exclusive will get Nioh Nier the cumulative result. Persona, The Show I'm most interested in on the Horizon is the 2017 lineup. The PS4 is killing it like Yakuza! For the competition, you'd have better luck finding a Digimon. There's such a disparity between the two, it's like a Gravity Rush to the head! You'd be Berserk to think otherwise.

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PCPS4XB

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@Lacerz: haha nice one I like that. It's funny that there is so many games you can start rippin lines with the titles.

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MotelDiscoVerde

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Top 10 Wii U

1- Zelda

2- Mario 1

3- Mário 2

4- Mario 3

5 - Mario Deluxe

6 - Pokemon Super Mario

7- Mario Kart

8- Super Mario

9- Mario killer

10- Mario Again 2

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tainted0ne

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@MotelDiscoVerde: What do you expect from the Mari-U?

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parabol69

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@MotelDiscoVerde: Feel better?

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Batusai4Ever

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so everyone in here is always bashing COD IW but according to numbers MOST of them actually bought it and play it...so funny.

P.S. I play IW with my son and we have a really good time, more than with COD4 which we rarely play because it's a camping fest as soon as the match begins.

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drumjod

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@batusai4ever: Clearly the people bashing COD are not the same people buying COD. There are plenty of COD fans who don't even go to gaming websites.

I enjoyed the IW demo on PS4, and hope to see it for $20 digitally on PC some time soon just for the single player campaign. I can't stand the multiplayer, largely because I get my ass kicked :P

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