Sony reconfirms 2016 release date for The Last Guardian as PS4 sells 6 million consoles during holiday season
New Releases: Unravel, Assassin's Creed Chronicles, Dying Light: The Following, More
Nintendo Download: Minecraft: Story Mode, Mario & Luigi: Paper Jam, SMB3 GBA, more
Broncos defy Madden NFL 16's prediction with a win over Panthers in Super Bowl 50
Return of The Dragon... Bruce Lee has been added to EA Sports UFC 2
Activision confirms Skylanders 6, new Call of Duty from Infinity Ward, Destiny expansion in 2016; Destiny 2 coming in 2017
Ubisoft will release Watch Dogs 2, For Honor, Ghost Recon: Wildlands, and South Park: The Fractured But Whole before March 31, 2017
Nintendo Download: Oddworld New N Tasty, Big Brain Academy, Polarium Advance, more
Quantum Break getting PC version, Xbox One System Bundle, and free copy of Alan Wake
Ubisoft won’t release a new Assassin’s Creed game in Fall 2016
Recent Articles: Grand Theft Auto V
Call of Duty: Black Ops III is the best-selling game of 2015; CoD franchise sells more than 250 million copies since 2003
The numbers have been tabulated and the Call of Duty franchise once again reigns supreme over all other video games.
According to The NPD Group’s yearly report of retail releases, Call of Duty: Black Ops III was the best-selling game in 2015, besting EA’s Madden NFL 16 (#2) and Bethesda’s Fallout 4 (#3). The Call of Duty franchise also controlled the back end of the list with Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare taking the #10 spot. Activision’s Scott Lowe added (by way of the Activision Games Blog) that the entire franchise has sold more than 250 million copies since the release of Call of Duty in 2003.
Believe it or not, games outside the Call of Duty franchise found success in 2015 as well, though most of them were released after July 1st including Star Wars: Battlefront (#4), NBA 2K16 (#6), and FIFA 16 (#9). The only game to break that trend (aside from a few 2014 stragglers like Advanced Warfare) was Mortal Kombat X (#8), which was released in April. The game-playing public may not always like it, but this does explain why publishers constantly strive to release their games in the back half of the year.
On the hardware side, console sales surged in 2015, as the PS4 and Xbox One continued to outpace the PS3 and Xbox 360. The PS4 was the overall winner in 2015, but NPD analyst Liam Callahan told GamesIndustry.biz that both platforms did well: “After 26 months of sales, the combined cumulative sales of Xbox One and PS4 exceeds the 26 month total of the PS3 and Xbox 360 by 47 percent,”
The NPD’s list of the top ten best-selling games for 2015 can be found after the break. (more…)
While financial folks continue to claim that the Call of Duty franchise is in freefall, the latest game in the series still managed to top the sales charts in December. Call of Duty: Black Ops III, which also topped the list in November, beat out several other strong contenders for the public’s Christmas dollars including Star Wars: Battlefront (#2) and Fallout 4 (#3). There weren’t too many new releases available in December, but one, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Siege (#7), managed to crack the top ten.
However, the the biggest surprise in the NPD Group’s December report might be that Minecraft: Story Mode landed at #9… even though the game disc available in stores only contains the first episode. Interestingly, it placed just behind the original Minecraft, which was firmly locked in at #8.
Even with a dearth of new releases, December 2015 was a good one from a financial perspective, which NPD analyst Liam Callahan shared with GamesIndustry.biz: “December 2015 was the best month on record for PS4 and Xbox One, and the second-best for the Wii U in terms of new physical software unit sales. This also meant that it was the best month of total eighth generation new physical software sales.”
The full top ten list for December 2015 can be found after the break. (more…)
Rockstar continues to muscle into Apple’s turf with today’s announcement that Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories is now available to download through the iOS App Store. Liberty City Stories, which was originally released for the PSP in 2005, actually serves as a prequel to Grand Theft Auto III and gives players the chance to visit many of the same haunts:
In Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories, former trusted wise guy for the Leone crime family, Toni Cipriani, returns home after spending time in hiding for killing a made man. Now, the streets of Liberty City are in turmoil, as warring families vie for control and the town begins to self-destruct under waves of political corruption, organized crime, drug trafficking and union strikes. Deranged hit men, morally depraved tycoons, cynical politicians and even his own mother stand in the way, as Toni tries to bring the city under Leone family control.
With the move to iDevices, Rockstar has added a number of new features and enhancements to the game. Priced at $6.99, the latest version of Liberty City Stories will treat players to “real-time lighting and shadows, upgraded textures and art, greater draw distance, performance enhancements for touch-based gaming, cross-platform cloud saves, support for Apple’s 3D Touch and more.” Players who purchase the game on the iOS App Store will also be able to unlock an “I Heart LC” t-shirt for their GTA Online character in Grand Theft Auto V on the PC, PS4, or Xbox One.
According to Rockstar, Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories will soon be available to download for Android devices through Google Play and the Amazon Appstore. A new trailer for the game can be found after the break. (more…)
Whatever your opinion of Tom Brady and Deflategate (for the record, I agree with Tony Kornheiser, the suspension was “completely unjust”), it looks like nobody can take the air out of EA’s Madden NFL franchise. And don’t just take my word for it. The latest entry in the series, Madden NFL 16, topped the NPD Group’s newest monthly report and was declared the best-selling game of August 2015.
Madden NFL 16’s ascendance to the top of the list was a foregone conclusion, but August was an unusually quiet month for new releases. Just look at the three remakes/re-releases that broke into the top ten. Gears of War: Ultimate Edition chainsawed its way into the #3 spot, while the 30 games in the Rare Replay compilation collectively landed at #6. Finally, a Combo Pack containing Call of Duty: Black Ops + Call of Duty: Black Ops II claimed the #8 position (two spots ahead of Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare at #10, I might add). The only other new release to crack the top ten was Sony’s Until Dawn at #7.
But the real story of the month might be that Minecraft continues to sell. Even though its been available on the PS4 and Xbox One since last year (and another year on the PS3 and Xbox 360), the game continues to sell month after month. Only Madden NFL 16 was able to outpace Mojang’s creation in August as Minecraft is sitting at #2 on the best-sellers list.
A complete look at August 2015’s top ten is available after the break. (more…)
July is not typically a very strong month for new game releases, and only a single new title was able to crack the NPD Group’s recounting of the ten best-selling games of the month. But it was Lego Jurassic World, a June release, that sits at the top of the sales food chain this month.
Debuting at #3 in the NPD’s June report, Lego Jurassic World likely got a boost from the tremendous box office support for the film. After nearly nine weeks in theaters, the film has earned more than $636 million. Only Titanic ($658 million) and Avatar ($760 million) have made more money at the domestic box office.
While it’s unlikely that Lego Jurassic World will reach those heights, the game is another hit for WB Games, which had yet another big month in July. Batman: Arkham Knight (#2) and Mortal Kombat X (#8) once again both landed in the top ten.
The only new release to break into the top ten last month was EA’s Rory McIlroy PGA Tour. Before McIlroy, Tiger Woods had been PGA Tour’s pitchman for more than 15 years. As great as Tiger used to be, it looks like EA doesn’t need him to sell their golf game.
Finally this month, GamesIndustry.biz is reporting that overall sales of all game-related items (hardware, software, and accessories) is roughly even with July 2014. Both July 2014 and July 2015 produced around $184 million in total sales.
The complete top ten for July 2015 can be found after the break. (more…)
Take-Two Interactive didn’t have much to talk about during their quarterly financial report yesterday. Because XCOM 2, Battleborn, and Mafia III are still many months away, company executives mostly used the presentation to boast about the continued success of Grand Theft Auto V.
Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick said that the game has sold more than 54 million copies since it was released in 2013. That number includes GTA5’s initial launch on the PS3 and Xbox 360, as well as its subsequent release on the PS4, Xbox One, and PC. It’s quite an impressive achievement for everyone involved, which is probably why Zelnick didn’t sound very appreciative when an analyst tried to compare Mafia III to a Rockstar-developed project during the Q&A portion of the presentation:
Mafia III is a completely different experience. I wouldn’t compare it to anything else out there. The reveal was great, but it stands alone. And no, we don’t use any other game in the same sentence as Grand Theft Auto. It is the industry’s standard bearer. It’s not up for comparison. So no, I think, it’s flattering to even think that may be the case, but it’s not.
I love Zelnick’s “take no prisoners” attitude and the defense of his developers, but there was also some bad news for GTA fans during the presentation as well. Karl Slatoff, the President of Take-Two Interactive, confirmed the publisher has no information to share about a single-player expansion for Grand Theft Auto V, telling one analyst, “[W]e really don’t have anything to say about that today.”
Rocksteady’s Arkham trilogy went out with a bang last month, and it looks like a lot of fans went along for the ride, as The NPD Group has confirmed Batman: Arkham Knight was the best-selling game for June 2015.
Aside from the problems with the PC version, WB Games had a pretty good month as four of the publisher’s titles placed in the top ten. Newcomer Lego Jurassic World joined Arkham Knight near the top of the list in the #3 spot, while The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt (#4) and Mortal Kombat X (#8) held over from May. NPD’s Liam Callahan told GamesIndustry.biz, “Warner Bros. Interactive is the top corporate publisher so far in 2015, with dollar sales growing 217% versus the first half of 2014.”
But WB Games wasn’t the only company having a nice Summer as Bethesda has a hit on their hands with The Elder Scrolls Online. It was also a good month to be a squid as Nintendo’s Splatoon held strong at #5, and became the only platform exclusive to crack the top ten.
The industry as a whole should be very happy about last month’s sales as consumers spent a lot more than they did last year. Overall sales were up 18%, $869 million versus $734 million, over June 2014. And that includes increases in hardware (+8%), software (+21%), and accessories (+34%).
The complete top ten list of best-selling games for June 2015 can be found after the break. (more…)