NPD Numbers for December 2009 Offer Strange Stories

Mario NPDEvery month, it’s a big deal when the NPD group numbers are released. It allows industry bigwigs and fanboys alike to flex a little, flashing their bling-peens off to anybody who is willing to listen or give a damn. Obviously, the most interesting month of them all happens to be December, which usually shows what the deal was for the holiday season, gaming’s biggest cash haul. So what did this year’s December numbers tell us?

A few interesting things:

  • People love Mario. The Italian plumber’s new adventure easily outsold Modern Warfare 2 when stacked against individual PS3 and XBox 360 console sales, and nearly outdid the two combined. 2.8 million copies of Mario were sold last month. In fact, 7 of the top 10 software sales were Nintendo titles. Yikes.
  • Modern Warfare 2 is still top dog. The game didn’t do as well as Mario in December, but for the year has made about $1 billion big ones. That is insane.
  • PS3 exclusives haven’t yet found that killer sales title. The PS3’s biggest sellers this holiday season and on its platform as a whole are 3rd party titles such as Modern Warfare 2 and Assassin’s Creed 2 over games like Uncharted 2 and Demon’s Soul. Uncharted 2 has just barely broken 1 million copies sold (whereas the other 2 have done over 2 million each on the PS3), which I find interesting. Metal Gear Solid 4 has already been outsold by Halo 3: ODST. This isn’t an indictment on the system or its games at all, but on its install base: why in the world aren’t more of them buying these exclusives?
  • PS3 is climbing the ranks. Despite weaker first party sales, the PS3 had a great holiday season, seeing MS move into 3rd place for the time period. It’s about time, Sony. Let’s keep it going strong.

So, that’s the story of the December NPD numbers. What do you guys think about those? Anything particularly surprising that stands out?

Source- VG247