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Xbox outsells Wii in record November, but not by much

Kinect

NPD has released official sales figures for November and everyone but Sony has reason to celebrate. Video game sales were up 8 percent, reaching $2.99 billion. It was the best November on record, topping 2008 by about $30 million.

Despite a number of analysts playing the prediction game a few days ago and forecasting Wii’s doom, the Nintendo had one of its best Novembers yet, selling 1.27 million consoles, up 0.8 percent from last year. It was, however, narrowly defeated by the Xbox 360. Microsoft’s console, pumped up from the success of Kinect, nabbed 1.37 million in sales, up a crazy 67 percent from last November. Beating all competitors, the Nintendo DS managed 1.5 million units, down from 1.7 million last year.

The only sad panda in the room is Sony. Despite the debut of PlayStation Move, PS3 sales were down 25 percent from 2009. 530,000 units were sold during the month–less than half the sales of Nintendo or Microsoft. In September and October, the PS3 outsold Wii, which lost its monthly lead to the 360 in June.

Here are the best selling games of November:

  1. Call of Duty: Black Ops (Activision Blizzard, Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, PC, DS) – 8,400,000
  2. Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood (Ubisoft, Xbox 360, PS3)
  3. Just Dance 2 (Ubisoft, Wii)
  4. Madden NFL 11 (Electronic Arts, Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, PS2, PSP)
  5. Fable III (Microsoft, Xbox 360)
  6. Donkey Kong Country Returns (Nintendo, Wii)
  7. Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit (Electronic Arts, PS3, 360, Wii, PC)
  8. Gran Turismo 5 (Sony, PS3)
  9. NBA 2K11 (Take-Two Interactive, Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, PS2, PSP,PC)
  10. Wii Fit Plus (Nintendo, Wii)

Oddly, none of the best-selling games are Kinect titles. NPD reports that Kinect-related purchases accounted for 77 percent of total Microsoft sales in November. PS Move sales accounted for about 22 percent of Sony’s totals. Both Kinect and Move are motion-based add-ons meant to help the devices compete with the Wii. In the case of Kinect, it may be working. But despite a third place running for the last couple months, and a flurry of articles writing it off as dead, the Wii is showing resilience.