Game Sales up 6 Percent, God of War 3 Leads the Charge

game sales up 6 percent god of war 3 leads the chargeAfter a rocky 2009 followed by two months of double-digit declines, U.S. retail sales of video game software, hardware and accessories finally saw an uptick in March.

Market researcher NPD Group said Thursday total video game sales climbed 6 percent from the same month a year earlier, to $1.52 billion. Strong sales of Nintendo’s gaming systems, new “Pokemon” games and Sony Corp.’s “God of War III” helped boost results.

Software sales jumped 10 percent to $875.3 million, well above what most analysts were expecting. In addition to “God of War,” which sold more than a million copies, two “Pokemon” games from Nintendo and “Final Fantasy XIII” from Square Enix were also top sellers. “Battlefield: Bad Company 2” from Electronic Arts Inc. was among the month’s strongest-selling games as well.

Industry expectations were for software sales growth of about 3 percent, said Electronic Entertainment Design and Research analyst Jesse Divnich. The higher-than-expected March figures, he added, were driven by Nintendo, whose games sold much better than analysts had predicted.

Hardware sales dropped 4 percent to $440.5 million, in part because game console prices are lower than they were at this time last year. Nintendo’s Wii system sold 557,500 units, and its portable DS, 700,800. Once again, the company easily surpassed rival console makers, with Microsoft Corp.’s Xbox 360 selling 338,400 units and Sony’s PlayStation 3 selling 313,900.

Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime said supply constraints that had squeezed Wii sales in the past couple of months are easing up.

Sales of video game accessories rose 11 percent to $206.8 million.

Year-to-date video game sales were down 7 percent at the end of March compared with the same three-month period last year.

Earlier Thursday, Activision Blizzard Inc. raised its revenue and earnings forecast for the first quarter, citing strong global demand for its top games — “World of Warcraft” and “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.”

The latter is now the second-best-selling game of all time in the U.S. after Nintendo’s “Wii Play,” said NPD analyst Anita Frazier. “Wii Play” has sold extremely well in large part because it comes packaged with a Wii controller at no extra cost.

Product Review

'New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe' is 2D platforming wizardry

New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe is the latest Wii U game to come back from the dead on Switch. And wow, it’s much better than we remembered.
Gaming

Fortnite V-Bucks being used by criminals for money laundering on dark web

Criminals are using Fortnite's V-Bucks for money laundering schemes on the dark web. Epic Games, apparently, is not doing enough to prevent the game from being used for the illegal activity.
Gaming

Immerse yourself in a new universe with these incredible PSVR games

The PSVR has surpassed expectations and along with it comes an incredible catalog of games. There's plenty of amazing experiences to be had so we've put together a list of the best PSVR games available today.
Gaming

‘Rocket League’ is the latest game to get full cross-platform play

Psyonix has announced that Rocket League now supports full cross-platform play across PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC, joining Fortnite as the only games to do so.
Gaming

Find all of the secret exits and world skips in 'New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe'

New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe has two distinct Mario experiences in one package. In this guide, we'll show you how to find all of the secret exits in New Super Mario Bros. U, that lead to hidden levels and let you skip worlds.
Gaming

Find all of the secret exits and world skips in 'New Super Luigi U Deluxe'

Just like all other 2D Mario games, New Super Mario Bros. Deluxe includes secret exits and world skips. In this guide, we'll show you how to get to all 12 secret exits in New Super Luigi U.
Gaming

For Netflix, ‘Fortnite’ on YouTube is a bigger threat than HBO

In a letter to shareholders, Netflix explained that it views the video game Fortnite as bigger competition than HBO, with YouTube videos of the game drawing viewers away from the streaming platform.
Gaming

Take a trip to a new virtual world with one of these awesome HTC Vive games

So you’re considering an HTC Vive, but don't know which games to get? Our list of 25 of the best HTC Vive games will help you out, whether you're into rhythm-based gaming, interstellar dogfights, or something else entirely.
Gaming

Here's where Xur is and what he has for wares this week in 'Destiny 2: Forsaken'

The weekly vendor in Destiny 2: Forsaken always brings Exotic weapons and armor, some of the toughest loot to find in the game. Here's everything you need to know to track down Xur: Where he is, when he shows up, and what he's stocking.
Computing

You could be gaming on AMD’s Navi graphics card before the end of the summer

If you're waiting for a new graphics card from AMD that doesn't cost $700, you may have to wait for Navi. But that card may not be far away, with new rumors suggesting we could see a July launch.
Gaming

Sharing your best gameplay moments is quick and easy on the Xbox One

The current generation of consoles make it easier than ever to share your gaming highlights with the world. Here's a quick guide on how you can record a gameplay video on Xbox One.
Gaming

Blizzard’s latest hiring spree is likely for the unannounced ‘Diablo 4’

Activision Blizzard is hiring for more than a dozen positions on unannounced Diablo projects. Some of the roles are likely for the unannounced Diablo 4, the next mainline entry in the series.
Gaming

Everything we know about 'Red Dead Online', including the new mode Gun Rush

Red Dead Online will gradually rolled out to Red Dead Redemption 2 players via a beta. We've got all the details about the beta's suite of competitive and cooperative modes, as well as what to expect going forward.
Gaming

Xbox One X vs. PS4 Pro: Which console is more powerful?

Far from cooling down, the console wars are only getting more intense. We compare Microsoft's Xbox One X to Sony's PlayStation 4 Pro to help you decide which premium console is right for you.