At a glance:
- NPD reports total US video games spending in March 2022 down 15% YoY to $4.9 billion
- All categories down year-on-year for both March and Q1 2022
- Elden Ring is best-selling game year-to-date, second best of last 12 months
Spending declines continue in the US, with The NPD Group reporting all categories were down year-on-year in both March 2022 and the first quarter of the year.
Total spending on video games, hardware and related products last month reached $4.9 million, 15% less than was record in March 2021.
Software spend dropped 13% to $4.1 billion. That's despite half the titles in the Top 16 being new releases; in fact, none of the games launched last month -- such as Kirby and the Forgotten Land, Gran Turismo 7 and Tiny Tina's Wonderlands -- managed to unseat Elden Ring as the best-selling game of the month.
NPD notes the From Software epic showed double-digit percentage growth in terms of dollars when compared to its launch period in February 2022.
Elden Ring stands as the best-selling game of the year so far. In fact, if you look at the previous year (e.g. 12 months ended March 2022), it is only beaten by Call of Duty Vanguard in terms of dollar sales.
Gran Turismo 7 had to settle for second place, although it racked up a new series record in terms of launch month dollar spend and is currently the fourth biggest selling game of Q1 2022.
Hardware spending was down 24% to $515 million.
Xbox Series X|S was the best-selling device for both March and Q1 in dollars, while Switch led both in terms of units.
This was a record March for Xbox when it comes to both dollar and unit sales, breaking the platform holder's previous bests in 2014 and 2011 respectively.
Accessories spending was down 23% year-on-year to $227 million. The Xbox Elite Series 2 Wireless Controller was the best-selling accessory of both March and the year so far.
Mobile spend, provided by Sensor Tower, was down 12% year-on-year. Revenues from the iOS App Store held steady, with a less than 0.25% decline, but this was offset by Google Play's decrease of 25%.
Candy Crush Saga was the biggest mobile game in March, in terms of US revenue, followed by Roblox and Coin Master.
Looking at the first quarter of 2022, total spending was down 8% year-on-year to $13.9 billion.
Software spending fell 7% to $12.1 billion, hardware slipped 15% to $1.2 billion, while accessories were down 16% to $592 million.
Here are the US Top 20 (based on dollar sales) for the period between 1/30/2022 through 2/26/2022, courtesy of The NPD Group:
|Last Month||This Month||Title|
|NEW||2||Gran Turismo 7|
|NEW||3||Kirby and the Forgotten Land*|
|NEW||4||MLB: The Show 2^|
|2||5||Horizon: Forbidden West|
|3||6||Pokemon Legends: Arceus|
|8||8||Mario Kart 8 DX*|
|6||9||Call of Duty: Vanguard|
|NEW||10||Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin|
|NEW||11||Tiny Tina's Wonderlands*|
|7||15||Madden NFL 22|
|12||17||Mario Party Superstars*|
|14||18||Super Smash Bros Ultimate*|
|13||19||Animal Crossing: New Horizons*|
|21||20||Assassin's Creed: Valhalla|
*Digital sales not included
^Includes only the MVP Edition and Digital Deluxe Edition