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NPD January 2011 – Hardware down 8%, Black Ops still tops

NPD has released its figures for the month of January 2011, and the results show Activision's Call of Duty: Black Ops tops once again.

Hardware declines 8 percent in January

Hardware sales came in at $324 million, which is an 8 percent decline year-over-year: January 2009 sales came in at $353.7 million.

Xbox 360 was the top selling console for the month, moving 381,000 units thanks to sustained consumer demand for Kinect.

The console was up 48,000 units year-over-year for the month and overall growth was 15 percent year-over-year.

Total "retail spend" on Xbox 360 topped $551 million, making it the top-selling console platform for the tenth month in a row.

"Some lingering supply constraints coupled with high consumer demand led to continued pockets of shortages at retail, " said Microsoft in a statement.

"[We] anticipate this trend to improve through February, but will continue to work with retail and manufacturing partners to expedite production and shipments."

Sony also responded to the figures, noting an increase in software sales, but failed to provide any console numbers.

"As the only system with both stereoscopic 3D and precision motion controlled gaming, PlayStation is delivering a new era of immersive entertainment fueled by the industry’s strongest content lineup," said SCEA"s senior director of corporate communications, Patrick Seybold.

"Next week, with the arrival of one of the most anticipated titles of the year, Killzone 3, consumers’ expectations for exhilarating 3D graphics and fast-paced PlayStation Move action will be further elevated in living rooms around the world."

Wedbush Securities' Michael Pachter announced in his latest investor report that Wii moved 319,000 units, while PS3 moved 267,000, representing a 31 percent and 3 percent decline, respectively.

"January represents yet another weak start to a year," said Pachter. "Over the last 23 months, video game packaged software sales have grown only four times, with sales averaging down 10 percent per month for nearly two years. The silver lining in the 2009 – 2010 cloud is that sales have averaged only -1 percent for the last four months, suggesting that there is some hope for a return to positive packaged goods sales.

"It is clear that an inordinate amount of time has been spent by gamers playing multiplayer online games, mobile phone games, and even social games, but we continue to hold out hope that the packaged software industry will find a sales support level during 2011."

VG247 was informed this evening that Nintendo would not be releasing a statement this month.

Software declines 5 percent, Black Ops wins again

Software came in at $576 million for the month, which is a year-over-year decline of 5 percent, compared to $606.8 million for the same period last year. Total software, including PC sales, came in at $603.1 million, a 6 percent year-over-year decline.

Black Ops retained the coveted spot on top of the list, still riding the wave of last year's 12 million sold, while Just Dance 2 maintained the second place spot. Dead Space 2 debuted in third after being out for four days of the reporting period.

LittleBigPlanet 2 took the fourth spot with its debut, and DC Universe Online debuted on the chart at number 10. Motion control games took four spots total on the top ten.

The full top ten for software for January 2011 is below.

  1. Call of Duty: Black Ops (PS3/360/Wii/DS/PC)
  2. Just Dance (Wii)
  3. Dead Space 2 (PS3/360/PC) - 452,000 (per GAF)
  4. LittleBigPlanet 2 (PS3) - 353,000 (per GAF)
  5. Zumba Fitness: Join the Party (PS3/360/Wii)
  6. NBA 2K11 (PS3/360/Wii/PSP/PS2/PC)
  7. Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood (PS3/360)
  8. Dance Central (360)
  9. Michael Jackson: The Experience (Wii/DS/PSP)
  10. DC Universe Online (PS3/PC) - 195,000 (per GAF)

The industry as a whole

It seems the industry was suffering from a holiday shopping hangover, because during the four weeks of January 2011, industry sales came in at $1.16 billion, which is a 4 percent decline year-over-year compared to 2009.

Accessories saw a boost of 6 percent with sales hitting $235.1 million compared $222.8 million last year.

It must be noted that peripherals such as Kinect and Move are considered accessories by NPD, so these likely had quite a bit to do with the bump.

About the Author

Stephany Nunneley avatar

Stephany Nunneley

News Editor

Half-blind/half-dyslexic, bad typist, wine enthusiast, humanitarian, intellectual savant, idiot savior, lover of all things nonsensical, animal hoarder and highly sarcastic.

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