Action game sales slipping?

The latest list of best-selling games features games of all types--except action games.


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PC Data released its latest list of best-selling games today, which covers the week of January 21-27, 2001. Although the list contains few surprises--The Sims in first place again, followed by The Sims: Livin' Large, again--GameSpot noticed that no action games made the top ten. Looking back through the last two months of sales charts, we found that the last new action release to break into the top ten was Novalogic's Delta Force: Land Warrior, which took ninth place during the week of November 5-11, 2000. The only other action game that has been in the top ten recently is GT Interactive's Unreal Tournament, which was released back in November 1999, and managed to take fourth place last week after having been discounted to around $18. Several factors may be contributing to slower sales in the action genre, including the popularity of player-created mods, which extend the playable life of games indefinitely by adding new maps, weapons, and features to older games.

There are certainly good action games still being released--Fox Interactive's Giants: Citizen Kabuto, which was released in early December, was nominated for the same award. In spite of nominations, awards, and favorable reviews, neither game has cracked the top ten since its release. According to Fox, the company is pleased with the sales of No One Lives Forever, and it expects the game to continue to sell well, even if it does not break into the top ten.

Top-selling games for the week of January 21-27, 2001

Rank / Title / Publisher / Average Price
1 / The Sims / Electronic Arts / $40
2 / The Sims: Livin' Large / Electronic Arts / $28
3 / Roller Coaster Tycoon / Hasbro Interactive / $24
4 / Diablo II / Havas Interactive / $35
5 / Hoyle Casino 2001 / Havas Interactive / $28
6 / Age Of Empires II: Age of Kings / Microsoft / $42
7 / Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 / Electronic Arts / $39
8 / Roller Coaster Tycoon: Loopy Landscapes / Hasbro Interactive / $27
9 / Sim Theme Park / Electronic Arts / $20
10 / Who Wants To Be A Millionaire 2nd Edition / Disney / $19

Why are action games not breaking into the top ten? Does the mod community help or hurt action game sales? Share your opinions in Talkback below.

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