June Gloom Hits Videogame Industry

The cloudy weather at E3 in Los Angeles last month should have been a sign of how videogame sales were faring.

A report released by the NPD Group found that total game sales from the retail channel, including hardware and software, totaled $1.03 billion, down 10 percent from June 2010.

All three sectors — hardware, software and accessories — recorded as well. Hardware was down nine percent, software was down 12 percent and accessories were down 11 percent.

The decreases were expected, since June can typically be slow as game developers wait to release big hit titles around the holiday period. Additionally, the makeup of the industry is changing.

The physical retail channel still generates the majority of industry sales, but there are a growing number of ways to play games, including mobile apps and downloadable content.

Earlier this week, the NPD Group reported that in the first quarter of the year, digital revenues totaled $1.85 billion.

In June, Take-Two Interactive had three of the top-selling games, including L.A. Noire in first place, Duke Nukem Forever in second and NBA 2K11 in seventh. Sony’s Infamous 2 placed third, and Disney’s LEGO Pirates of the Caribbean ranked fourth.  Nintendo’s Legend of Zelda placed fifth with 283,000 units sold.

The Xbox 360 continues to be the best-selling console, selling more units in the U.S. than any other console for 12 of the past 13 months. In June it sold 507,000 units.

But it was the holiday season that Microsoft was most excited about in a statement issued to the press:

“The size of the Kinect games portfolio will triple by the end of the year and Xbox will bring new partnerships like UFC and Disney to the platform as well as blockbuster games, movies, music and TV together in one place. We expect Xbox 360 to maintain its lead and to be number one worldwide by the end of the year, selling more hardware units than PlayStation and Wii.”

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