December NPD: Xbox One beats PS4, but 3DS comes out on top

Xbox One beat PS4 in console sales in December, but as before, there are a few caveats

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Before the NPD numbers even came out, Sony sent us an email reminding us that PS4 was "out of stock in December due to overwhelming demand." It sounded like Sony was blaming supply for what could have been a second-place finish against Xbox One. We were right.

Xbox One beat PS4 in console sales in December, but as before, there are a few caveats. When you combine both November and December, PS4 is still the best-selling next-gen console--and when you factor in global sales, PS4 clearly has the lead. However, while both new machines are having great, competitive launches, neither of them were able to beat Nintendo 3DS, the best selling system of all of 2013--not just December.

"Hardware sales of the Wii U were also positive with December 2013 marking its highest month for unit sales month so far," NPD analyst Liam Callahan noted. Guess having great games does sell hardware, huh?

Call of Duty: Ghosts ends up taking the top software spot for the month, but Grand Theft Auto 5 is the top-selling game of 2013. In fact, it's "within striking distance" of being the best-selling GTA game of all time. "With the success of Grand Theft Auto V, the launch of Bioshock Infinite, as well as the continued popularity of the NBA 2K franchise, Take 2 Interactive was the top video game software publisher for 2013," Callahan added. That should be good news for shareholders, right?

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

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

  • Battlefield 4 (360, PS3, PS4, XBO, PC)

  • Just Dance 2014 (WII, 360, NWU, XBO, PS3, PS4)

  • Madden NFL 25 (360, PS3, PS4, XBO)

  • NBA 2K14 (360, PS4, PS3, XBO, PC)

  • Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag (360, PS4, PS3, XBO, PC, NWU)

  • Grand Theft Auto V (360, PS3)

  • Lego Marvel Super Heroes (360, PS3, 3DS, XBO, PS4, NWU, PSV, PC)
  • FIFA 14 (360, PS3, PS4, XBO, PSV)

  • Skylanders SWAP Force (WII, 360, PS3, NWU, 3DS, XBO, PS4)

And here's a bonus look at the top 10 best-selling games of 2013:

    Top 10 Games of 2013

  • Grand Theft Auto V (360, PS3)

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

  • Madden NFL 25 (360, PS3, PS4, XBO)

  • Battlefield 4 (360, PS3, PS4, XBO, PC)

  • Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag (360, PS4, PS3, XBO, PC, NWU)

  • NBA 2K14 (360, PS4, PS3, XBO, PC)

  • Call of Duty: Black Ops II (360, PS3, NWU, PC)
  • Just Dance 2014 (WII, 360, NWU, XBO, PS3, PS4)
  • Minecraft (360)
  • Disney Infinity (360, WII, PS3, NWU, 3DS)

End of year sales prove to be interesting, with not one but two Call of Duty games on this year's chart. People really, really like Call of Duty. Also, it appears Disney Infinity beat Skylanders as the physical-toy-video-game mash-up game of the year.

As always, NPD is careful to point out as always that these figures only represent new physical retail sales.

From The Chatty

  • reply
    January 16, 2014 3:45 PM

    Andrew Yoon posted a new article, December NPD: Xbox One beats PS4, but 3DS comes out on top.

    Xbox One beat PS4 in console sales in December, but as before, there are a few caveats

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      January 16, 2014 4:41 PM

      Who remembers the dark days of 2011 and 2012 for the 3DS?

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      January 16, 2014 5:17 PM

      The lists of "top 10 selling games" almost looks the same ever year...just change a #

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      January 16, 2014 7:41 PM

      I'd love to say my ps4 is the best thing ever. but frankly, it's pretty fucking boring.

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        January 16, 2014 7:43 PM

        The Wii U is where it's at.

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        January 16, 2014 8:25 PM

        right now i'm playing bf4 and don't starve. there are not really any big titles coming out on any other platforms right now either and the 15 dollar titles are trickling out.

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        January 17, 2014 6:12 AM

        The complete lack of game selection 2 months into release probably has something to do with that.

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        January 17, 2014 7:00 AM

        It has a ton of potential and for the time being it's doing the same thing my other consoles were doing (streaming video). No regrets.

        I'm sure the XBONE is great, as well, but I don't want to install all the extra bullshit in my entertainment center. I don't have room to hide the kinect and power brick bullshit in my current cabinet.

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          January 17, 2014 7:10 AM

          Why would you hide the Kinect? If you aren't going to use it don't even hook it up...

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            January 17, 2014 7:26 AM

            Because I don't like tons of crap sitting on my entertainment center.

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        January 17, 2014 7:45 AM

        this is why i held off getting one. the launch list of games was one sided to XONE.

        PS4 purchase will happen when Naughty Dog release their first game on the console.

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      January 16, 2014 8:00 PM

      So does anyone ever release stats on digital sales?

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        January 16, 2014 10:00 PM

        All the public companies release financial info periodically. About a year ago it seemed that about one third of sales were online on average. I imagine it is higher these days.

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      January 16, 2014 11:25 PM

      I was wondering what was going on with the PS4. I've only seen them in store once since launch yet everywhere has had xbox ones in stock since the weekend before christmas. I work at my local mall so I'd check quite frequently. Glad I got my PS4 at launch since I'm still not seeing them around! My friend needs to get one though!

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        January 17, 2014 1:20 AM

        I'll be home in March, hopefully there are lots of new game packs and ps4's out then.

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      January 17, 2014 5:50 AM

      I'm really surprised at the supply that each company was able to produce this time around. I've seen PS4s and X1s in stock several times while shopping at Target and Walmart. This is far different than the console launches of old.

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        January 17, 2014 6:38 AM

        I guess it shows partly how low-tech ps4 and xb1 are that they are so relatively easy to make.

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          January 17, 2014 6:53 AM

          I wouldn't take that away from it - personally I think it is more likely that larger electronic items sales are down over all (PCs, laptops, etc) so there is a lot of extra production capacity.

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            January 17, 2014 8:45 AM

            For reference, 1.4 million 360s shipped by end of 2005.

            I think they (both) started making them sooner and faster this time.

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        January 17, 2014 6:47 AM

        Wait where do you live? I have yet to see the PS4 in stock anywhere. Best Buy says they get them, but they only sell them on Sunday's even if they are in the back, sitting there, they will only sell them on Sundays (this is retarded IMO). the XBone however I see all over the place now. At first I thought MS made more, but the PS4 seemed to sell more at Launch, and are in more markets, so I assume they are just spread thinner than XBone.

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          January 17, 2014 6:58 AM

          I live in the region near Tenn/Southern Virginia. My local Walmart had 8 X1s last night and 1 PS4 when I was there shopping. To be fair, the PS4s are much more scarce, but I've seen them a few times in stock at Walmart and my local Target.

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      January 17, 2014 7:04 AM

      GG Microsoft.

      Its over Sony.