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Far Cry, Sea Of Thieves, And Kirby Sail To The Top Of March U.S. Sales

by Imran Khan on Apr 24, 2018 at 05:58 PM

The March National Purchase Diary, or NPD, sales rankings have been released, showing that March's biggest releases have floated to the top.

In terms of software, Ubisoft's Far Cry 5 topped the charts for March despite releasing late in the month and is now the top selling game of 2018 so far. Sea of Thieves followed behind, with MLB 18 and Kirby: Star Allies just behind that, making places 2 - 4 all console exclusives. Software is overall lower than last March, though that was also the launch of the Switch, which naturally was a higher month for software than a non-console launch month. Overall, software in 2018 is 8 percent higher, a number the NPD group attributes to Switch software sales.

Sea of Thieves sets a record for Rare as the highest launch month sales for any of the studio's games since the NPD group started tracking in 1995. That means the most notable game that would exclude is Donkey Kong Country on the Super Nintendo.

Kirby: Star Allies sets a similar but separate record for the series, which consistently does fairly well for Nintendo. Star Allies' launch sales are 90 percent higher than the second highest launching game in the series, Kirby: Nightmare in Dream Land on the Gameboy Advance in 2002.

Far Cry 5 1
Sea Of Thieves 2
MLB 18: The Show 3
Kirby Star Allies 4
Grand Theft Auto V 5
Call of Duty: WWII 6
Mario Kart 8 7
Ni No Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom 8
NBA 2K18 9
Monster Hunter: World 10
Super Mario Odyssey 11
The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild 12
PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds 13
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six: Siege 14
A Way Out 15
Assassin's Creed: Origins 16
Dragon Ball: FighterZ 17
FIFA 18 18
Splatoon 2 19
UFC 3 20


Note that not all publishers report digital sales.

In terms of hardware, revenue declined 30 percent from last March, which again likely has a lot to do with this year not having a console launch. The declination is all in all a little misleading, as console sales are actually doing remarkably well. The NPD group points out that the Xbox One is contributing to overall hardware growth, meaning that the system is selling better than it has at any point in the past. 

The PlayStation 4 overall sold the most hardware in March and has thus far been the best selling console in 2018. The Nintendo Switch with neon controllers, however, was the single best selling piece of hardware. That means that the PlayStation 4 line, including the Slim and the Pro, sold more than the Switch, but no individual SKU of that line outsold the neon Switch which is also the best selling hardware item of 2018 so far.


Our Take
Far Cry 5 rocketed to the top fast and has overtaken Monster Hunter World as the best selling game of 2018. Ubisoft has a grasp on the formula of what makes a major AAA game successful and has far more hits than misses in that space these days.