Consumers in the U.S. spent nearly $3 billion on game-related products last month, according to the December 2019 NPD game report. But that number is down significantly year-over-year. Strong ongoing performances from Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare just couldn’t make up for plummeting interest in current-gen offerings. Here are the full results:

December 2019 Dollar Sales Dec’18 Dec’19 Change
Total Video Game Sales $3.494b $2.984b -15%
Video Games Hardware $1,168m $973m -17%
PC & Video Games Software (PC, Console and Portable; Physical and Full Game Digital Formats from the STEAM, PlayStation and Xbox platforms) $1,314m $1,141m -13%
Video Games Accessories & Game Cards $1,012m $869m -14%

“December 2019 tracked spending across video game hardware, software, accessories, and game cards totaled $3.0 billion, falling 15 percent when compared to a year ago,” NPD analyst Mat Piscatella said. “Full year tracked spending declined 13 percent when compared to 2018, to $14.6 billion.”

Of course, 2019 was likely never going to compare well to 2018. Rockstar Games launched Red Dead Redemption II in October 2018, and this past fall had no release of that scale.

Let’s get to the software.


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NPD tracks physical sales at retailers, but it also gets digital data directly from publishers. But not every company participates. For example, Nintendo doesn’t share its first-party sales, and Activision Blizzard does not provide its sales.

These charts are sorted by dollar sales — not number of units sold.

  1. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2019
  2. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
  3. Madden NFL 20
  4. NBA 2K20
  5. Luigi’s Mansion 3*
  6. Pokemon Sword*
  7. Mario Kart 8*
  8. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate*
  9. Pokemon Shield*
  10. Minecraft#
  11. Grand Theft Auto V
  12. Red Dead Redemption II
  13. FIFA 20
  14. Just Dance 2020
  15. Need for Speed: Heat
  16. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild*
  17. The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening*
  18. New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe*
  19. Super Mario Party*
  20. Ring Fit Adventure

*Doesn’t include digital
#Only includes digital on Xbox and PlayStation
^Steam sales not included

“Dollar sales of tracked video game software declined 13% in December compared to a year ago, to $1.1 billion, while annual sales dropped 9 percent to $6.6 billion,” said Piscatella. “Declines were experienced across all platforms in December, while Switch was the only platform with gains for the year.”

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare

“Call of Duty: Modern Warfare was the best-selling game in the U.S. for the third consecutive month since its October launch,” said Piscatella. “And it finishes 2019 as the best-selling game of the year. This is the 11th consecutive year that Call of Duty has been the best-selling franchise.”

If you look back at the last decade, Call of Duty owned the top of the charts.

“Call of Duty franchise releases account for 10 of the top 15 best-selling games of the decade.”

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order

“Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order repeats as the second best-selling game of the month,” said Piscatella. “And it finishes 2019 as the year’s sixth best-selling title. With only two months in market, Star Wars: Jedi Fallen Order becomes Respawn Entertainment’s best-selling game of all-time in terms of dollar sales.”

Respawn has previously released Titanfall, Titanfall II, and Apex Legends. But while Apex Legends is a huge success, it’s a free-to-play game. So it doesn’t show up in this NPD data.

MLB The Show 19

“MLB The Show 19 is now the best-selling baseball genre game in U.S. history,” said Piscatella. “Lifetime full-game dollar sales of MLB The Show 19 have now surpassed those of MVP Baseball 2004, which originally released in March 2004.”

Sony is planning to begin selling MLB The Show on other platforms beginning with MLB The Show 21. That should enable the game to earn even more going forward.


“Half of December’s top 20 best-selling games were published by Nintendo,” said Piscatella. “Luigi’s Mansion 3 finished as December’s fifth best-selling title overall, while ending 2019 as the fourth best-selling title of the year on Nintendo Switch.”

Top 10 best-selling Xbox One games for December

  1. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2019
  2. NBA 2K20
  3. Madden NFL 20
  4. Borderlands 3
  5. Mortal Kombat 11
  6. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
  7. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate*
  8. Kingdom Hearts III
  9. Tom Clancy’s The Division 2
  10. Mario Kart 8*

Top 10 best-selling PlayStation 4 games for December

  1. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2019
  2. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order
  3. Madden NFL 20
  4. NBA 2K20
  5. Need for Speed: Heat
  6. Grand Theft Auto V
  7. FIFA 20
  8. Death Stranding
  9. Marvel’s Spider-Man
  10. The Outer Worlds

Top 10 best-selling Nintendo Switch games for December

  1. Luigi’s Mansion 3*
  2. Pokemon Sword*
  3. Mario Kart 8*
  4. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate*
  5. Pokemon Shield*
  6. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild*
  7. The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening*
  8. New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe*
  9. Super Mario Party*
  10. Ring Fit Adventure

Top 10 best-selling Nintendo 3DS games for December

  1. Pokemon: Ultra Sun*
  2. Pokemon: Ultra Moon*
  3. Super Smash Bros.*
  4. Mario Kart 7*
  5. Super Mario 3D Land*
  6. Super Mario Maker*
  7. Luigi’s Mansion*
  8. Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon*
  9. Minecraft*
  10. The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D*

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