Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 won January 2015 in North America, but it’s not like anybody else turned up to challenge it.
NPD January 2016 at a glance
Total spend down 4%.
Hardware down 15%. PS4 topped charts.
Software down 10%. Black Ops 3 topped charts.
Compare month-on-month: December 2015
Compare year-on-year: January 2015
January was pretty damn dry in terms of new retail releases, and that was reflected in the NPD’s monthly report on the state of the US market.
Total spend dropped 4% year-on-year to $605.2 million, with declines in hardware and software sales alike. Only accessories managed growth, up 15% year-on-year to $235.5 million.
Hardware spend dropped 15% year-on-year to $157 million. Unusually, this wasn’t just because of declining PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 sales; PS4 and Xbox One also faltered a bit, for the first time since launch. There’s no need to panic, though; unit sales were flat, and it’s only dollar sales that fell, thanks to price cuts over the past year.
The PS4 outsold the Xbox One as usual, with Sony describing the console as the “top-selling platform and software sales leader in January”, recording “impressive year-over-year growth in both hardware and software sales”.
Last-gen sales plummeted 81%, by the way, with 3DS and Vita also declining 21%.
Software sales dropped 10% year-on-year to $212.7 million, but there was precious little to buy in shops. The only combined SKU new release to crack the top ten was LEGO Marvel Avengers. The NPD said Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam would have made it into the top ten on a single SKU chart, through.
Otherwise, the charts are extremely dull; Call of Duty: Black Ops 3, GTA 5 and NBA 2K16 occupy their regular roles in the top three.
- Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 (Xbox One, PS4, Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
- Grand Theft Auto 5 (PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
- NBA 2K16 (PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3)
- Star Wars Battlefront 2015 (Xbox One, PS4, PC)
- Fallout 4 (PS4, Xbox One, PC)
- Minecraft (Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS4, PS3)
- Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege (Xbox One, PS4, PC)
- Madden NFL 16 (PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3)
- LEGO Marvel Avengers (PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Wii U, PS3, 3DS, Vita)
- FIFA 16 (PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3)
As ever, bear in mind this NPD report only tracks traditional, new retail sales; the digital market grows ever more lucrative, and without a complete picture it’s inadviable to draw conclusions about the health of the industry as a whole.