The sci-fi shooter Titanfall was once again the top-selling game of the month, but Sony’s PlayStation 4 continues to pull ahead of the Xbox One.
Gamers spent $580.3 million at retail on new hardware, software, and accessories in April, according to industry-intelligence firm The NPD Group. That is up 17 percent from $495.3 million over the same period last year. Once again, consumers rushed into stores to get the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One systems, which boosted hardware sales by 76 percent from $109.5 million to $192.8 million.
“As seen in the past two months, overall spending in April 2014 across hardware, new physical software, and accessories were increased collectively versus April 2013,” NPD analyst Liam Callahan said in a statement. “The 17 percent growth [year-over-year] was due to hardware and accessory growth, despite a 10 percent decline in new physical software.”
Gamers spent $227.9 million on new physical games, which — as Callahan pointed out — is down 10 percent from $254.3 million in April 2013. This is largely due to consumers putting their money toward the high-priced consoles and the sluggish sales of old-gen releases.
An important thing to keep in mind is that these NPD numbers only keep track of new physical games sold at brick-and-mortar retailers. It doesn’t include online or digital sales, which means that these figures merely represent a snapshot of a larger picture. It doesn’t include mobile, either.
OK. Let’s get on to the best-sellers list.
1. Titanfall (Xbox 360, Xbox One, PC)
2. Call of Duty: Ghosts (Xbox 360, PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Wii U, PC)
3. NBA 2K14 (Xbox 360, PS4, PS3, Xbox One, PC)
4. Minecraft (Xbox 360)
5. Lego: The Hobbit (Xbox 360, PS3, Xbox One, PS4, 3DS, Wii U, Vita)
6. The Lego Movie Videogame (Xbox 360, 3DS, PS3, Wii U, Xbox One, PS4, Vita)
7. Lego Marvel Super Heroes (Xbox 360, PS3, DS, 3DS, PS4, Wii U, Xbox One, Vita, PC)
8. The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (PS4, Xbox 360, PS3, Wii U, 3DS)
9. Grand Theft Auto V (360, PS3)
10. Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag (Xbox 360, PS3, PS4, Xbox One, Wii U, PC)
Titanfall tops the charts for the second month in a row. This time, it got some help from the introduction of the Xbox 360 version, which wasn’t available in March. That also probably helped keep Titanfall on the charts while Sony’s PlayStation 4 exclusive open-world action game Infamous dropped off completely, but it turns out that it still did pretty well when compare to Xbox One only.
“Infamous: Second Son was the top-selling new-gen software title in April,” PlayStation brand boss Guy Longworth said in a statement. Of course, that only includes physical retail games sold in the U.S. But we double checked with Sony, and it confirmed that, according to the NPD, Infamous outsold the Xbox One SKU of Titanfall.
The entire top 10 looks pretty similar to what we’ve seen over the last several months. The only new releases to make this chart are Lego: The Hobbit and The Amazing Spider-Man 2. I don’t like to judge, but it’s clearly a rough month when the only new games to make this list are adaptations of blockbuster films.
Oh, and here’s our monthly reminder that Minecraft is insane. It really shouldn’t surprise anyone anymore, but the block-building title is still on this list — and it’s still only on Xbox 360 as a physical game. This is almost a year after the retail disc debuted, which was a year after Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition hit Xbox Live Arcade, which was a year after the game released on PC.
“Sony’s PlayStation 4 was the No. 1 platform for hardware sales in April for the fourth month in a row, followed by Xbox One,” said Callahan.
Microsoft confirmed it sold 115,000 Xbox Ones and 71,000 Xbox 360s. Sony and Nintendo have not provided the numbers for their systems as of press time.
Unlike in March, April didn’t really have a Titanfall or an Infamous: Second Son to move systems. PlayStation 4 and Xbox One instead coasted along on their momentum — as did the Wii U (although with considerably less momentum). This is also a strange month because sales happened before Microsoft announced the new, Kinect-less Xbox One for $400, which should be available June 9.
With the PS4 consistently outselling the Xbox One, it does make sense that Microsoft saw the need for a change.
Looking away from the head-to-head competition for a bit, both Sony’s and Microsoft’s consoles are doing very well.
“[Home] console hardware sales increased by 120 percent in April 2014 over last year,” said Callahan. “Life to date, sales of PS4 and Xbox One hardware have more than doubled the combined sales of PS3 and 360 hardware through their first six months of sales.”