Join gaming leaders online at GamesBeat Summit Next this upcoming November 9-10. Learn more about what comes next.
Rare just launched one of its biggest games in more than two decades, according to industry-tracking firm The NPD Group. Sea of Thieves is selling faster through its first month than any Rare game since NPD started tracking sales.
“Sea of Thieves was the second best-selling game of March, and is the eighth best-selling game of 2018 year-to-date,” NPD analyst Mat Piscatella wrote. “Sea of Thieves generated the highest launch month sales for any title produced by developer Rare since tracking by The NPD Group began in 1995.”
That timeframe would include Rare classics like Nintendo 64 shooters GoldenEye 007 and Perfect Dark. Microsoft acquired Rare in 2002, but it has never had a breakout hit for the publisher because you criminals don’t appreciate Viva Pinata. Sea of Thieves, however, is that breakout hit.
Sea of Thieves’ position on this list only includes people who purchased it digitally or at retail. NPD does not include people who downloaded it as part of their Game Pass subscription, which is Microsoft’s Netflix-style service that gives players a library of games for $10 per month.
Three top investment pros open up about what it takes to get your video game funded.
So in terms of dollar sales, Sea of Thieves is the No. 8 game of 2018 so far. That actually makes it the highest platform exclusive on the list (although PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds is No. 7, and that only includes Xbox One sales). That will change for the April NPD report, which will include PlayStation 4 blockbuster God of War.
But Sea of Thieves is showing that Microsoft has an audience that is hungry for marquee tentpole titles, and the publisher just needs to do better at delivering those experiences.
GamesBeatGamesBeat's creed when covering the game industry is "where passion meets business." What does this mean? We want to tell you how the news matters to you -- not just as a decision-maker at a game studio, but also as a fan of games. Whether you read our articles, listen to our podcasts, or watch our videos, GamesBeat will help you learn about the industry and enjoy engaging with it. How will you do that? Membership includes access to:
- Newsletters, such as DeanBeat
- The wonderful, educational, and fun speakers at our events
- Networking opportunities
- Special members-only interviews, chats, and "open office" events with GamesBeat staff
- Chatting with community members, GamesBeat staff, and other guests in our Discord
- And maybe even a fun prize or two
- Introductions to like-minded parties