Top Ten Best-Selling Games in the US for November 2015

Call of Duty: Black Ops III comes out on top in NPDs, but the PS4 version does not.

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The NPD Group today released its monthly sales report for November 2015, which tracks new, physical sales at retail in the United States. Unsurprisingly, it was Call of Duty: Black Ops III, Fallout 4, and Star Wars Battlefront that came out on top.

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What is interesting is the fact that Black Ops III sold better on Xbox One than any other platform. Call of Duty has been associated with Xbox platforms for years, thanks to Microsoft's deal that saw DLC come to its systems first. Black Ops III is the first game since Sony signed a deal with Activision to see DLC instead come to PlayStation platforms first. (Keep in mind, however, that NPD data doesn't account for digital sales.)

With the exception of that and Just Dance 2016 (which sold best on the original Wii!), it was the PS4 version of every multiplatform game that sold best. (The order of platforms in the list below indicates which platforms it sold most on.)

Best-Selling Physical Games in US for November 2015:

  1. Call of Duty: Black Ops III (XBO, PS4, 360, PS3, PC)
  2. Fallout 4 (PS4, XBO, PC)
  3. Star Wars Battlefront (PS4, XBO, PC)
  4. Madden NFL 16 (PS4, XBO, 360, PS3)
  5. NBA 2K16 (PS4, XBO, 360, PS3)
  6. FIFA 16 (PS4, XBO, 360, PS3)
  7. Need for Speed (PS4, XBO)
  8. Halo 5: Guardians (XBO)
  9. Assassin's Creed Syndicate (PS4, XBO, PC)
  10. Just Dance 2016 (Wii, NWU, 360, XBO, PS4, PS3)

The top of this list is not particularly dissimilar from a list Sony released today highlighting the top-selling games on PSN in November. It is a big shift from NPD's October list, which saw Halo 5, NBA 2K16, and Assassin's Creed Syndicate make up the top three.

According to NPD analyst Liam Callahan, this was the "best month ever in total unit sales" for the current generation of consoles, topping December and November of last year, which had been the two previous best months.

Battlefront, the number three game, had the strongest first-month sales of any Star Wars game, including the previous best, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed.

Software sales overall were $993.9 million, down 7 percent from last November's $1.07 billion. That's due in large part to portable software sales dropping 66 percent, while current-gen software sales increased 37 percent.

Another noteworthy tidbit pointed out by Callahan involved the success of special editions. "As an indication that gamers are willing to spend more, every game in the top 10 offered a special edition which generated 9 percent of unit sales and 14 percent of dollars among the top 10," he said. "In comparison, last year special editions for the Top 10 games generated 3 percent of units and 5 percent of dollar spending within the top 10."

In a statement shared with GameSpot, Activision senior VP Rob Kostich said, "Black Ops III was the largest release in North America in November by a wide-margin in both units and dollars sold-thru. According to NPD, Call of Duty also was the largest release of any title in North America since 2013, based on physical units sold at retail in its launch month. There's tremendous momentum for Call of Duty this holiday. Both retail and digital sales are up significantly versus the same time last year. And our community has responded enthusiastically, driving engagement to new franchise highs on next gen consoles in its first month of release."

On the hardware side, the PlayStation 4 was the best-selling console during the month, a shift from October, when the Xbox One rose to the top.

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