The Sims 3 tops global PC chart in 2009, LTD sales hit 4.5M - EA

Citing internal data and external stat trackers, publisher claims sandbox life simulator was best-selling desktop title worldwide last year.


When the NPD Group released its annual US retail sales results for 2009 last week, the stat-tracking firm revealed that PC game sales at brick-and-mortar shops slipped a dramatic 23 percent from 2008 to $538 million. At the top of that chart was Electronic Arts' The Sims 3, which debuted to solid reviews on June 2. Though NPD did not break out sales figures, EA said that the life simulator had sold 3.7 million units globally through June.

The Sims 3 often mimics real-life situations.
The Sims 3 often mimics real-life situations.

Today, EA announced that not only was The Sims 3 the best-selling PC title in the US, but also the rest of the world. The publisher pulled its data from a range of independent industry-tracking sources, including NPD, Chart-track UK, Gfk France, Gfk Spain, Gfk-MCC Germany, as well as its own internal estimates. EA has confirmed for GameSpot that lifetime-to-date sales for The Sims 3 have reached 4.5 million units.

EA noted that The Sims 3's performance in 2009 marks the sixth time during the decade that a Sims title topped the global PC sales charts. The original The Sims accomplished the feat from 2000 to 2003, with The Sims 2 ousting it in 2004. The Sims 2 finished as runner-up on the global PC sales charts in 2005 and 2006.

The publisher has also seen substantial success with The Sims 3 Exchange, an online store populated by content created by users. According to EA, more than 100 million pieces of content have been downloaded through the Exchange since the game launched in June.

The Sims 3 received its first expansion in November 2009 in the form of the well-received World Adventures. A second add-on, The Sims 3: High-End Loft Stuff, is expected next month. As part of its downward earnings revision last week, the publisher also said that new entries in The Sims franchise would appear on unspecified consoles during its 2011 fiscal year, which runs April 1, 2010 through March 31, 2011.

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Avatar image for SadPSPAddict

No real surprise - it's one of the few games that hasn't transported well to consoles

Avatar image for OAKRAID_PL

its all about the motherlode

Avatar image for LosDaddie

4.5M is great sales

Avatar image for tequilasunriser

I thought videogames were a way to escape reality. This is the equivalent of reading a book about the average citizen's work week. Woopty do. Is society becoming so obsessed with voyeurism that this is now the utmost supreme form of entertainment? Grow some balls (ovaries?), grab some binoculars, and go do it the old fashioned way.

Avatar image for Ladiesman17

@ kikitube if it for (mac) I think you have to wait for the "blockbuster" games such as StarCraft or Diablo. ^^

Avatar image for Obsidian

Well then, there is no accounting for taste is there? I guess that's also why the Wii is so popular. Damn casuals... ruining this country. Why don't they all go pack to CasualLand where they belong?

Avatar image for santinodrake

The Sims 3>>>crysis

Avatar image for Infinite_Access

That shows how big pc gaming is. Not.

Avatar image for santinodrake

The Sims 3 is the best pc game EVAR

Avatar image for Gamesterpheonix

How the hell? Evil Sims...

Avatar image for Nickname111


Avatar image for spudster007

Now for them to release tons of expansions that will give EA more money!

Avatar image for luvsnflravens

If you want to see sex, thats what girls are for lol.

Avatar image for kikitube

I wish I could buy the game. Very hard to find it (for mac) in my city

Avatar image for djtim_3000

Article forgets to mention that NPD figures ONLY count sales from bricks and mortar stores. NOT online sales and NOT digital distribution, making whatever number they come up with the most pointless in all of gaming.

Avatar image for pudgexd

Sims 3 needs a new patch asap. The current patch fix bugs but also introduce much more bugs/glitches and mods being unusable.

Avatar image for firesage423

There isn't sex in sims 3.. they make "whoopy".. and no u dont see it.. they whoopy under the sheats.. if u wanna see that stuff thats what the internets for.. pff losers.. lol

Avatar image for Trogeton


Avatar image for sircyrus

This game still needs 4-5 more expansions to get back up to what players were used to with the Sims 2 content. That will make the cost $50 + $20-30 x 6 = $170-$230, just to get back to what Sims 2 offered. That combined with the Sims Store selling hairstyles and furniture for $1-2 a pop, and I imagine this is going to be EA's main moneymaker for quite a while still.

Avatar image for maitkarro

@grasshopper6 and I've had uncensor from the begging when I go the game, though there isn't much too see like Barby or Ken dolls.

Avatar image for grasshopper6

they need to bring it on to consoles

Avatar image for grasshopper6

@nohabs is there sex in sims 3 lol prob. since its on pc it might be blurry tho.

Avatar image for 2bitSmOkEy

I need to give this game another shot. I have never really been able to get into this series.

Avatar image for nohabs

Is there sex in these sims games ?. There is in Mass Effect.

Avatar image for QuatrixJ

"minimal, but very addictive. as the (high-end) system. PC 'hide' their claws.." What?

Avatar image for wis3boi

Sims 2 was and still is a great game. I have all the expansions and over 2000 mods installed in it. After seeing what the Sims 3 did in terms of the same exact expansions again and again, I have no interest at all. I'm sticking to the 2nd one

Avatar image for -Fromage-

I've never been a big fan of these Sim games.

Avatar image for ChamomileBaths

Hahahaha, love the caption and picture. As for the sales.. I think the last brick and mortar I bought for my PC was Joint Operations. The sooner we move on to downloads only the better off are for saving space in our houses/apartments, simplifying our entertainment center/game center operations, and for the environment and it's 50,000 resources it has left. Bricks don't fit into game consoles anyways.

Avatar image for Jak_Napier

2009 was a good year for the Sims.

Avatar image for Ladiesman17

2009 = The Sims 3 2010 = StarCraft II 2011 = Diablo III :) minimal, but very addictive. :D as the (high-end) system. PC "hide" their claws..

Avatar image for Expo_Smacko

Good news. Nice to see a well done game up there.

Avatar image for iShiny


Avatar image for _Pedro_

@Skargamer, the pc has more games released in the same time period as all the consoles combined. It's the easiest platform to develop for and is the only system this gen to have AAA-quality third party exclusives.

Avatar image for inthepastxx

I have to agree with supadave841, I also recently just became a major pc gamer, although ive been playing the sims ever since its release back in 2000 but now. Playing all the latest and greatest hardware and games out there. But always find myself coming back and playing the sims 3 over and over for hours on in.

Avatar image for supadave841

That's impressive because PC games generally don't sell well. I just became a PC gamer and I love it. Its just that pc games can't be traded in for credit at a local Gamestop because of piracy so that puts a dent on the market for them. But if I hate a game like I did with borderlands, I just sell them through Amazon.

Avatar image for Skargamer

people just dont realize the power the PC has. console fanboys love their consoles and i respect that but you gotta admit the PC is the most powerful system out there. why dont they make a lot of games on it you ask? cuz making a game on a console is easier compared to the PC since you have the same engine running a lot of the games you hve on a console. PC only games are difficult to make because make a PC exclusive will require a lot of work since some people know the power of the PC. bottom line is that sims 3 is a great game, or moreover the sims series, and i applaud the developers for taking a risk and making such an awesome game. sure it doesnt have the best graphics but is an AWEsome PC exclusive. developers should realize this (or maybe they already did) and take advantage of the PC's power...

Avatar image for severe_009

@firesage423 Don't worry as we all know, The Sims 3 will be bombarded with expansions pack and stuff plus like TS1 and TS2, it's just a matter of time.

Avatar image for firesage423

thank u kris9031998! sims 2 house and stuff plus the sims 3 world would be better but u couls do so much more in sims 2

Avatar image for Peach100

I wonder why too. This game has horrible problems!! Saving errors, crashing, no vsync, terrible issues with patches. You need patches to fix the patches and so forth. I admit though, the game could be awesome if it weren't for all the problems. And, at times, admist the problems, it can be fun.

Avatar image for kris9031998

i wonder why, sims 3 sucked compared to sims 2

Avatar image for CoolKidX

It has been downloaded like 3 million times on Utorrent or something, I read that somewhere. So thats kinda sad, as sad as MW2 being downloaded 5 million times. But its a good thing some people just buy the game, in that way PC gaming isnt that dead, and maybe StarCraft 2 will get alot of sales yay.

Avatar image for jedikevin2

There is almost no way to know Pc numbers these days. Until Steam and other services give off online sales numbers these type of articles are pointless. To me Pc is doing just fine when you consider the npd hard dvd game sales numbers and knowing that the PC market has switched to many online download sales. I for one have bought over 9 PC games through direct 2 drive and steam services in 2009 of which will not be counted in any total sales figures.

Avatar image for All-Madden09

meh sims is okay.

Avatar image for cybrcatter

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Avatar image for cybrcatter

PC is Dead? PC isn't profitable? "more than 100 million pieces of content have been downloaded through the Exchange since the game launched in June. " I rest my case, your Honor.

Avatar image for paulliddell

this just proves how a game developer can work like a dealer. If you make a game simple to handle and cheap (the sims 1). when it works you pile on add on after add on get the point. years later (YEARS!!!!) you bring out a so called part 3 and everyone pays......really. I"m actually out of cash and borrowing games from mates, if thats not addiction?

Avatar image for neonfrax2

Wow! What fantastic sales numbers for the Sims 3!! Imagine how great the sales on this would've been if the bootleg version of it wasn't released a few weeks before the game was available in stores! (FYI - my tongue is FIRMLY in my cheek on this one... if anyone else can remember the pre-launch bootleg hype surrounding this game)

Avatar image for pvtdonut54

I really don't like the series that much but kudos to EA on still being able to profit from it.

Avatar image for prioritymail

Sims = awesome