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June 2016 NPD: Video Game Sales Shoot Downward, Overwatch Is June's Top Game

by Elise Favis on Jul 21, 2016 at 01:57 PM

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According to the June 2016 NPD report, video game software, accessories, and hardware sales have declined significantly by 26 percent. While June 2015 totaled at $878.7 million spent on video game products, this year consumers spent $652.2 million.

Last year, Batman: Arkham Knight led in video game sales, and unfortunately, this year is suffering from not having a game of that magnitude to push numbers higher.

Earlier this month, Sony reported that the PlayStation 4 was the leading hardware in June. Microsoft didn't reveal its sale numbers, but noted that more than 1.2 billion hours were played on Xbox One. The June 2016 NPD report breaks down video game-related product sales further, and notes that while PlayStation 4 led the race, hardware sales in total have dropped 42 percent.

According to NPD, this is due to pricing changes, along with the possibility that upcoming hardware revisions, including Scorpio, PlayStation Neo, and the Xbox One S making consumers wary about buying current-gen consoles. Software is down 20% from last year, now totaling $322 million. PC software, including both digital and physical formats, have also declined by 20 percent with the new total of $27.8 million.

NPD Group announced in mid-July that it would now include digital sales data, however this shift has proven to be more confusing than substantial in the report. This has in turn affected how the listing of top games has been organized and structured.

You can view all the top 10 games below: 

1. Overwatch*
2. Grand Theft Auto V
3. Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens
4. Doom 2016**
5. Mirror’s Edge: Catalyst
6. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End**
7. NBA 2K16
8. Call of Duty: Black Ops III
9. Destiny: The Taken King
10. Minecraft**

** No digital sales included in ranking
* No PC sales included

Overwatch sits comfortably on top of the list, even without incorporating its sales from Grand Theft Auto V follows in second, and Lego Star Wars: The Force Awakens in third. Both Take-Two and Warner Bros. are participating in the digital reporting segment, and PC sales likely helped nudge these higher. Doom is in fourth, however because the report doesn't recognize its digital sales, that number may be significantly higher. The same can be said for Uncharted 4 and Minecraft. 


Our Take
Because of NPD’s shift to include some digital sales, comparisons with June 2015 are a bit challenging. That said, we’ve pulled out key takeaways above, including a dip in hardware due to pricing changes, and the dominance of some perennial games like Minecraft and GTA V. Overwatch, which continues to dominate, is likely more of a force than we even realize without figures.