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NPD: NES Classic was the highest unit-selling platform for June

Retro consoles help lead 52% YOY hardware sales growth

The best-selling hardware in terms of unit sales for June 2018 wasn't the PS4, the Nintendo Switch, or the Xbox One. It was the NES Classic, which with the SNES Classic and gains across all three major consoles helped drive a 52% year-over-year increase in overall hardware sales.

According to the NPD report for June 2018, overall spending on hardware, software, accessories and game cards was up 25% year-over-year to $1.1 billion. This was largely driven by increases in hardware sales, as software was down just slightly. Year to date spending for all categories was up 17% to $6 billion, this time with accessories and and game cards leading sales increases across the board.

Though the NES Classic sold the most units (the first time an NES system has been at the top of NPD unit sales since the group began tracking), PS4 led once again in terms of dollar sales. Hardware spending overall was up 52% year-over-year to $350 million, and all platforms saw growth. Xbox One hardware dollar sales nearly doubled year-over-year, and Nintendo Switch sales were up over 50%. Portable hardware was up too, though only 7% year-over-year.

Accessory and game card spending saw a record high for the month of June at $353 million, up 38% year-over-year.

Software saw the slightest of decreases in June, down 1% year-over-year to $374 million. Year to date spending was up 6% to $2.6 billion. The Nintendo Switch was the only platform that saw software sales growth, with its dollar sales more than doubling those of this month last year. That isn't even including digital full-game software sales, which the NPD group does not track. Those solid sales led Nintendo to be the top-selling publisher for June, though Ubisoft still leads year to date.

Analyst Mat Piscatilla noted in the report that for 2018, re-releases of games (including Game of the Year editions, "Complete" editions, remasters, definitive editions, and similar) are doing quite well and are actually impacting the growth of new full-game releases. Re-releases have seen over 150% growth year-over-year so far, while launch editions have seen a slight decrease.

As for individual software in June, Mario Tennis Aces marked a return to form for the series, achieving the highest first-month sales for a Mario Tennis game by beating former record-holder Mario Tennis on the Nintendo 64. It was also the top selling game overall for June.

Top 10 selling games (physical and digital) for June 2018

  1. Mario Tennis Aces
  2. God of War
  3. Grand Theft Auto V
  4. The Crew 2
  5. Far Cry 5
  6. Mario Kart 8
  7. LEGO Incredibles
  8. FIFA 18
  9. Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy
  10. Detroit: Become Human
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