May NPD: New game launches rule the roost

We've finally hit our last month of competition between Sony and Microsoft during which Sony has the price advantage. PlayStation 4 beat out Xbox One to lead hardware sales for the fifth consecutive month. However, with the $400 XBO model having gone on-sale early this month, we should get a better 1:1 comparison starting with the next NPD figures.

The NPD Group reported this evening that console hardware increased 137% in May 2014 over the prior year. That rise is due mostly to the launch of new consoles, but it notes that both Wii U and Vita are up over last year as well. NPD credits bundles like the ones for Mario Kart 8 (Wii U) and Borderlands 2 (Vita) for part of their respective upticks.

Software, which had been on the decline, saw an increase in May thanks to several new game launches. New games accounted for roughly half of all the dollar sales in the month, as compared to only 9% last year. In other words: people really like buying new games. Shocking, isn't it?

As for exactly what people were buying, Watch Dogs finished on top. Mario Kart 8 finished in second place, which is still pretty impressive considering it's only on one console, and that console has a small install base. The launches of other new games like MLB 14: The Show and Wolfenstein also hit near the top, with Amazing Spider-Man and Kirby rounding out the middle and lower rungs.

    Top 10 Games (New Physical Retail only; new releases bolded)

    • Watch Dogs (PS4, XBO, 360, PS3, PC)

    • Mario Kart 8 (NWU)

    • MLB 14: The Show (PS4, PS3, PSV)

    • Wolfenstein: The New Order (PS4, XBO, 360, PS3, PC)

    • Minecraft (360, PS3)

    • The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (360, PS3, PS4, XBO, 3DS, NWU)

    • NBA 2K14 (360, PS4. PS3, XBO, PC)

    • Titanfall (360, XBO, PC)

    • Kirby: Triple Deluxe (3DS)

    • Call Of Duty: Ghosts (360, PS4, PS3, XBO, PC, NWU)