Battlefield Hardline beats Bloodborne to top March NPD chart

By Brenna Hillier, Friday, 17 April 2015 00:22 GMT

PS4 had a good month but it was EA’s multi-platform Battlefield Hardline that was the best-selling game.

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March 2015 NPD at a glance

Total spend down 6% YoY.

Hardware and software both down. Console hardware blamed for significant hardware dip.

Accessories up.

Battlefield Hardline tops software chart.

PS4 outsells other consoles.

Wii U, 3DS and Xbox One all show sales growth.

Compare MoM: February 2015

Compare YoY: March 2014

Bloodborne released towards the end of the month and is a PS4 exclusive, so it’s not terribly surprising that Battlefield hardline beat it sales wise for the month of March in the US.

The From Software RPG took second slot, which is very impressive for a single platform, and the PS4 was, once again, the best-selling console of the month – so there’s certainly something for Bloodborne and Sony fans to celebrate.

“We are truly honored PlayStation 4 is the top selling console and #1 in software sales again according to NPD sales data for March 2015,” Sony said in a statement.

“PS4 remains the cumulative sales leader both globally and in the United States and we want to thank gamers worldwide for their ongoing support.”

Microsoft didn’t have a comparative boasting point this month, but said in a statement that the Xbox One is enjoying “strong growth”, and continues to out-perform the Xbox 360. Average Xbox Live time per month increased 45% year-on-year over March 2014, too.

Nintendo has also issued a statement on this month’s NPD report, saying Nintendo hardware sales are up 60% year-on-year compared to the same time frame in 2014. The 3DS in particular is doing well, with an 80% increase; last month, Majora’s Mask was a major charter. Wii U is also showing 20% growth.

“Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and Mario Kart 8 continue to sell well in their respective fifth and 11th months on the market, bringing their lifetime totals to nearly 1.6 million total units and more than 1.9 million total units, respectively,” the platform holder added.

In general, though, it wasn’t a good month for hardware. Sales fell hardware 21% year-on-year to $311.1 million, with a big dip in home console sales (29%, or $104 million) not quite compensated for by a 71% icnrease in portable hardware sales.

The dip is likely due to new-gen interest not compensating for declining last-gen sales, and also the fact that March 2014 was a pretty big month for what was then a pretty new pair of consoles.

NPD March: Software

NPD analyst Liam Callahan made a special point of highlighting Bloodborne’s sales.

“The launch of Bloodborne ranked as second overall in software sales this month, but also has the second highest sales for the debut month of a first-party game on the PS4, after inFamous: Second Son, in March 2014,” he said.

MLB 15 The Show also charted, making it a great month for PS4 software sales.

The Wii U also charted an exclusive: Mario Party 10 sold 290,000 units in its first two weeks, according to Nintendo.

Overall, monthly software sales on new-gen consoles grew 58% year-on-year.

“This is a sign of the health of the eight generation console space; especially when considering the strong March 2014 software releases (as a comparison) such as Titanfall and inFamous: Second Son,” Callahan said.

Here’s the full chart:

  1. Battlefield: Hardline (Xbox One, PS4, Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
  2. Bloodborne (PS4)
  3. Grand Theft Auto V (Xbox One, PS4, Xbox 360, PS3)
  4. Mario Party 10 (Wii U)
  5. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare (PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
  6. MLB 15: The Show (PS4, PS3)
  7. Minecraft (Xbox 360, PS3, Xbox One, PS4)
  8. NBA 2K15 (PS4, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
  9. Borderlands: The Handsome Collection (PS4, Xbox One)
  10. Final Fantasy: Type-0 HD (PS4, Xbox One)

General

After an excellent result in February, March was a more sober affair for traditional retail in the US, despite the five week reporting period.

Total industry spend was down 6% year-on-year compared to March 2014, to $963.7 million. Hardware fell 2% to $311.1 million. Software fell 3% to $395.4 million.

There was growth in accessories, with a 15% boost to Accessories was the one category to see some growth, up 15% to $257.2 million, apparently due to point and subscription cards, controllers, and toys to life figures.

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