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NPD: 2005 game sales up 21 percent

Gran Turismo 4 was top console game; portables boom as consoles and PC games slide.


The NPD Group, the leading market information provider for the game industry, today released sales figures for the first six months of 2005. According to the numbers, sales topped $4.1 billion between January 1 and June 30, as compared to $3.4 billion in the same period last year--an increase of 21 percent.

The two newest handheld systems, Nintendo's DS and Sony's PSP, helped increase unit sales for the entire industry 11 percent from last year. Portable software, hardware, and accessories sales were up 74, 181, and 81 percent, respectively.

Console hardware sales did fall 6 percent, but software and accessories sales were slightly up at three and six percent, respectively. PC software sales, on the other hand, continued to tumble, falling 10.5 percent from last year.

Even with PC games trailing and console software only marginally increasing, overall software sales reached $2.8 billion, up 9.2 percent from 2004's tally of $2.5 billion.

The top 10 software titles for the first six months of the year were dominated by PlayStation 2 games. Sony's console had six games in the top 10, including Sony Computer Entertainment's Gran Turismo 4 in the top slot.

Nintendo had the second most games in the top 10. Game Boy Advance games held two positions with Pokemon Emerald at second place and Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap at seventh. The lone GameCube representative was Capcom's Resident Evil 4 in the eighth slot. But that tied Microsoft's entire Xbox contingent, with the tenth-place Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith lingering at the bottom of the list.

The only 2004 game to crack the top 10 was Take-Two Interactive's controversy-laden Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, which was released in October. The complete Top 10 consoles games of 2005 can be seen below.

Rank/Title/Platform/Publisher/Release Date/SRP

1. Gran Turismo 4 (PS2, Sony Computer Entertainment, Feb 05 $49)
2. Pokemon Emerald (GBA, Nintendo, Apr 05, $34)
3. MVP Baseball 2005 (PS2, Electronic Arts, Feb 05, $49)
4. Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith (PS2, LucasArts, May 05, $49)
5. Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (PS2, Take-Two Interactive, Oct 04, $47)
6. God of War (PS2, SCE, Mar 05, $50)
7. Zelda: The Minish Cap (GBA, Nintendo, Jan 05, $50)
8. Resident Evil 4 (GC, Capcom, Jan 05, $50)
9. Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition (PS2, Take-Two, Apr 05, $49)
10. Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith (Xbox, LucasArts, May 05, $49)

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