The NPD group kept with their tradition and unveiled which were the best selling video games of 2015 in the U.S. that dominated the market. With 2016 still fresh, a year for the gaming industry has come to a close. Littered with surprising successes and unfortunate disappointments, 2015 was a good one in terms of sales.
The NPD group released the list of last year’s top selling games. ‘Call of Duty: Black Ops III’ took the winning position, marking the seventh year when Activision’s franchise snagged the number one spot. It appears the popularity hasn’t faded, nor the commitment of players and developers to create a fun experience. That is, in every term, an impressive performance from such long-standing franchise.
In fact, since the beginning of the ‘Call of Duty’ series to this day, the developer boasts selling a whopping 250 million titles worldwide. In both 2015 overall and the last month of last year, the first person shooter competitive game stayed ahead of the pack in terms of sales of physical copies. It shows that even though digital copies of games will likely overthrow the CDs soon enough, they’re still a relevant part of the market.
Following the popular franchise for best selling game of the year (physical copies), is ‘Madden NFL 2016’. It’s not the only sports game in last year’s top 10 list, which shows that the genre is still a favorite of the community. Year to year, there are only slight changes, with the core game remaining the same. And yet, popularity stands. After ‘Madden NFL 2016’ on 2nd place, ‘NBA 2K16’ took 6th place, and ‘FIFA 16’ ranked on 9th.
The bronze medal goes to late a late entry, ‘Fallout 4’. The post-apocalyptic hit was an instant success with the gaming community, and brought in an exceptional number of sales in spite of the fact that it was launched in November, 2015.
On 4th place stands one of last year’s disappointments ‘Star Wars: Battlefront’. Before its release, it was estimated that the game inspired by the world’s most popular sci-fi franchise would easily be the best selling video game of the year. ‘Star Wars’ was everywhere. With the release of the highly anticipated seventh installment of the movie series ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’, one would’ve expected fans to clamor for the game. However, it was not the case.
‘Star Wars: Battlefront’ did well in 2015, but it could’ve done better. The iron was hot, yet EA did not manage to craft a successful game out of it. The 5th place on the list, however, showed how it’s done. ‘Grand Theft Auto V’ remained in the top 5 list of 2015 even though it was launched a few years prior. With major content and constantly updated multiplayer mode, the game managed to stay relevant in spite of a much earlier release.
As far as consoles are concerned, it appears that 2015 was PlayStation 4’s year. Sony’s latest gaming platform defeated its biggest rival, Microsoft’s Xbox One in terms of sales. However, it appears the latter also boasted record sales for this time of the year, along with gaining more popularity for their Xbox Live. It remains to be seen what 2016 would bring.
Gamers have also been noted to take the needed step forward in gaming tech, likely pushed by last generation’s video game titles. Software sales for current gen consoles, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, were up 48%, and sales for last gen consoles, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, were down 54%. The community seems ready to take the leap into newer platforms. Now, it’s in the developers’ hands to create games that will make the step worth it.
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