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Top-Selling Games And Consoles Of 2020 Revealed For The US

The NPD Group has announced which games sold the best last month and for the entirety of 2020.


The NPD Group has released its report for US video game sales for December 2020 and the full year, shining a light on which games, consoles, and accessories sold the best.

As predicted, Activision's Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War was the top-selling game of 2020 during a banner year for games. Total spending on video games in the US--spanning games, consoles, accessories, and more--reached $56.9 billion, up 27% compared to 2019 and representing a new all-time high for spending in a year. December 2020 alone posted $7.7 billion in sales, which is up 25% compared to December 2019.

In terms of hardware, the Nintendo Switch (where to buy) was the best-selling console in terms of units and dollar sales for December 2020 and the full year. The Switch's annual dollar sales in 2020 were the second highest for any platform in US history, only trailing 2008 when the sales of the Wii were higher.

The PS5 was 2020's second best-selling console in terms of dollar sales, while the PS4 came in second in terms of total units sold. The PS5 was a bright spot, as it set a new record for dollar sales for a PlayStation platform through December.

The NPD's report includes no mention at all of Xbox sales. NPD analyst Mat Piscatella followed up in a tweet to mention how supply of the PS5 and Xbox Series S consoles was constrained and thus negatively impacting results.

Whatever the case, total dollar sales on hardware reached $1.35 billion for December 2020 (up 38%) and $5.3 billion (up 35%) for the full year. December 2020 was the biggest single month for hardware sales since December 2013 ($1.37 billion), while the full-year's $5.3 billion was the biggest number since 2011 ($5.6 billion).

In terms of game sales, Black Ops Cold War was the biggest-seller for December 2020 and the full year. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, which released in 2019, was 2020's second biggest game in terms of sales. Animal Crossing: New Horizons came in third for the US in 2020, but importantly, digital sales were not tracked for this game.

Cyberpunk 2077, which released on December 10, was the second best-selling game for December in the US and the 19th biggest game of 2020 overall, according to the NPD's data. This is an especially strong result considering digital sales for the game were not tracked.

Naughty Dog's The Last of Us: Part II was the top-selling PlayStation exclusive in the US and the sixth best-selling game overall during the year. The game is the third biggest-selling Sony game ever in terms of dollar sales, behind Spider-Man and God of War.

Moving to accessories, spending in this category hit $546 million in December 2020 (up 15%) and $2.6 billion (up 21%) for the full year. Sony's DualSense controller was a bright spot, becoming the best-selling controller for December and the entirety of 2020 based on units.

December 2020's Best-Selling Games (US)

  1. Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War
  2. Cyberpunk 2077*
  3. Assassin's Creed: Valhalla
  4. Spider-Man: Miles Morales
  5. Madden NFL 21
  6. Animal Crossing: New Horizons*
  7. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe*
  8. NBA 2K21*
  9. Immortals: Fenyx Rising
  10. Super Mario 3D All-Stars*
  11. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate*
  12. Just Dance 2021
  13. Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity*
  14. FIFA 21
  15. New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe*
  16. Super Mario Odyssey*
  17. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild*
  18. Super Mario Party*
  19. Ring Fit Adventure
  20. Mortal Kombat 11

*Digital sales not included

2020's Best-Selling Games (US)

  1. Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War
  2. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
  3. Animal Crossing: New Horizons*
  4. Madden NFL 21
  5. Assassin's Creed: Valhalla
  6. The Last of Us: Part II
  7. Ghost of Tsushima
  8. Mario Kart 8: Deluxe*
  9. Super Mario 3D All-Stars*
  10. Final Fantasy VII: Remake
  11. Marvel's Avengers
  12. Spider-Man: Miles Morales
  13. NBA 2K21*
  14. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate*
  15. FIFA 21
  16. Mortal Kombat 11
  17. Dragon Ball Z: Kakarot
  18. MLB The Show 20
  19. Cyberpunk 2077*
  20. Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 1+2

*Digital sales not included

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