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UK boxed games market delivers strongest April in five years

Latest GfK figures show PS4, Xbox One and Switch sales up 48% for the first four months of 2020

Boxed games, accessories and consoles generated more than £130m for UK games retailers last month.  

Over one million games were sold during April, making it the most successful April for physical game sales since 2015. It is a drop of 13% on March, but that was because of the launch of Animal Crossing: New Horizons, which is the biggest game of the year so far. OK  

All data is courtesy of GfK.

  The best-selling boxed video game of April was Final Fantasy VII: Remake, although the game didn't quite reach the sales heights of 2016's Final Fantasy XV. The remake suffered distribution challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Another game that was likely impacted by the crisis was the remake of Resident Evil 3, which was the fifth best-selling game of the month.   

Nintendo remains the dominant games publisher, with the company's games accounting for 21.5% of all boxed titles sold in the UK last month.  

Almost 210,000 games consoles were sold during April, which generated in excess of £50 million. All three major games consoles - Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PS4 - have sold more units during the first four months of 2020 than they did during the same period in 2019. All three platforms have seen a surge in sales since the UK entered lockdown, with consumers buying consoles to keep themselves occupied during the situation. Well over half a million games consoles have been sold in the UK between March and April, which is a rise of more than 48% over the same period in 2019. 

The data does not include micro or retro consoles, but does include the fast declining 2DS and 3DS platforms.  

The accessories and peripherals market also performed strongly during April, generating £31 million in revenue with more than 763,000 products sold. The best-selling accessory was the PS4 DualShock 4 Controller (Black), ahead of the Xbox One Wireless Controller (Black). The biggest third-party accessories manufacture

April UK GfK Physical Top 20

Position Title
1 Final Fantast VII: Remake
2 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
3 FIFA 20
4 Animal Crossing: New Horizons
5 Resident Evil 3
6 Forza Horizon 4
7 Grand Theft Auto 5
8 Mario Kart 8: Deluxe
9 Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
10 Persona 5 Royal
11 Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy
12 Luigi's Mansion 3
13 Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled
14 Red Dead Redemption 2
15 Ring Fit Adventure
16 The Last of Us: Remastered
17 Spyro Reignited Trilogy
18 Doom Eternal
19 Just Dance 2020
20 New Super Mario Bros U Deluxe

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Christopher Dring avatar

Christopher Dring

Head of Games B2B

Chris is a 15-year games business veteran. He spent nine years at UK business weekly MCV, including five years as editor. He joined GI in 2016 and oversees editorial, sales and events worldwide. He is the architect behind Best Places To Work Awards and GI Live. And is a tiny bit obsessed with market data. He also writes for Doctor Who Magazine. Because Doctor Who is awesome.

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