System and game sales for May 2010 in the USA

DS and DSi continue to rule in May 2010 outselling all other systems by wide margin
May’s American video game sales data from the NPD is in, and like almost any month the past year, it shows an unchanged result: A Nintendo system on top, this time the DS and DSi handhelds outsold everybody else. Nothing surprising there.

The NPD’s analyst Anita Frazier had this to say about hardware sales:

“The portable hardware category contributed the most to the decline in hardware sales for the month, yet the NDS is the best-selling hardware system for May. Console hardware unit sales are, in fact, flat to last year. Declines in sales result from a lower average selling price this year compared to last. Compared to April, both the PS3 and the 360 platforms realized a unit sales increase in hardware.”

Video game hardware overview:

1. Nintendo DS — 383,700
2. Nintendo Wii — 334,800
3. Xbox 360 — 194,600
4. PlayStation 3 — 154,400
5. PlayStation Portable — 59,400
6. PlayStation 2 — No longer tracked.

Red Dead Redemption Xbox 360 box artwork. Best-selling game of May 2010 in USA
The NPD mentions about software that, “Red Dead Redemption was the best-selling game for the month, achieving sales of 1.5 million units across both platforms. The game garnered spectacular review scores and in its first month at retail it has exceeded the lifetime sales of its predecessor, Red Dead Revolver, which was released in May 2004.”

“May was the 10th consecutive month of year-over-year software sales increases for the PS3 platform. Combined with the hardware and accessories sales increases for the platform, the PS3 has really hit its stride.”

“In May, 8 of the top 10 SKU’s for the month were new releases, which was the case with March 2010 as well. When more of the top selling games are new releases, it pushes up the average selling price for software overall, positively contributing to total revenues.”

“We have started to measure the consumer spend outside the physical new retail channel. During E3, NPD reported that in 2009, there was an additional consumer spend in the range of $4.5 to $4.75 billion on games content via these other vehicles including used, rental, subscriptions and digitally-delivered content. Our Games Acquisition Monitor and other consumer tracking services will continue to provide clients insight into these other avenues of consumer spend on games content. Moving forward, we plan to release a limited amount of this information into the public domain, either quarterly or semi-annually.”

“Another measure of the increasing importance of the digital world is reflected in the percent of sales comprised by online capable games. For May year-to-date, 43% of total software units sold were online capable, as compared to 37% for the same time frame last year.”

Video game software overview top 10:
1. Red Dead Redemption (Xbox 360) – 945,900
2. Red Dead Redemption (PS3) – 567,100
3. Super Mario Galaxy 2 (Wii) – 563,900
4. UFC 2010: Undisputed (Xbox 360) – 221,100
5. UFC 2010: Undisputed (PS3) – 192,300
6. Wii Fit Plus Balance Board (Wii)
7. New Super Mario Bros. Wii (Wii)
8. Alan Wake (Xbox 360)
9. Pokemon SoulSilver Version (DS)
10. Skate 3 (Xbox 360)

As for the games industry overall, Ms. Frazier ended with,
“Although down this month, May sales reflect the third best-selling May on record after May ’08 and May ’09. The 360 platform, across hardware, software, and accessories, contributed the greatest share of revenue to industry sales for the month, and year-to-date. The PS3 platform has enjoyed the greatest percentage growth, with platform sales across hardware, software, and accessories up 32% for the month, and 28% year-to-date.”