The NPD Group is one of the only firms that tracks game sales in the United States. That data shapes publishing decisions, and now smaller studios can access that data easier. The NPD Group revealed today that it is sponsoring the International Game Developers Association trade group. As a perk of that partnership, it plans to share some of its proprietary intelligence.

?This partnership with NPD will further the IGDA?s goal of helping game developers maintain successful careers,? IGDA executive director Jen MacLean said. ?The intelligence offered by NPD will enable developers at studios large and small better navigate the business aspects of game development so their companies can weather the storms of our hit-driven industry.?

NPD collects accurate sales data primarily through point-of-sale systems. When a Target sells a game, the NPD gets a report about which game, what platform, and for how much. The company then collects and presents its data to its partners each month. We always run stories about those reports, but even we don’t get access to many of the specifics.

Making data more accessible

But purchasing access to the NPD report is expensive. And this has given an unfair advantage to larger publishers that can easily afford to pay. The NPD Group recognizes that, which is why it’s trying to bridge that gap.

?NPD is excited to work with IGDA to help support its members as they navigate through an increasingly competitive marketplace,? NPD Games president Rob Liguori said. ?We look forward to providing the market expertise developers need to work more effectively and have a more positive impact on their bottom lines.?

The NPD Group plans to do that through quarterly webinars that are open to all IGDA members. And IGDA members will also get a discount on the NPD’s monthly gaming reports as long as they are new subscribers.