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Reissued NPD figures show 18 per cent decline in November sales

Market data firm NPD has reissued its figures for US retail sales of videogame products in the month of November, showing a major year on year decline of 18 per cent despite strong sales of titles including Star Wars Battlefront II.

Battlefront II was the top-selling title for the month, racking up over a million unit sales, and was followed in the ranking by EA's Madden NFL 2006, which sold 627,000 units - up significantly over the performance of last year's iteration.

However, it was a mixed month for publishers, including EA; while Madden did well, Need for Speed Most Wanted saw a 34 per cent shortfall over last year's performance, and overall the publisher saw growth of just eight per cent.

Activision was the big winner in the quarter - strong performance of games including Tony Hawk's American Wasteland and Call of Duty 2 gave the firm year on year growth of 54 per cent.

Take Two, however, did less well, recording a decline of 63 per cent as sales of GTA Liberty City Stories on PSP failed to make up for the lack of a GTA title on a home console platform this Christmas.

While the 18 per cent overall decline is actually better than many analysts predicted, sales of current generation software remained in a slump which couldn't be reversed by the launch of Xbox 360 or the strong performance of handheld platforms.

Overall, the figures suggest that software sales will be down for the full Q4 period in North America, unless there's a strong surge in retail sales in December - but there's little evidence to suggest that at present, with the retail environment for videogames products still reported to be very tough across the region.

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Rob Fahey avatar

Rob Fahey

Contributing Editor

Rob Fahey is a former editor of GamesIndustry.biz who spent several years living in Japan and probably still has a mint condition Dreamcast Samba de Amigo set.