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A new Madden game has continued the series’ best-selling streak, according to industry-tracking firm Circana. That said, FromSoftware’s Armored Core VI: The Fires of Rubicon has also placed high on the list, and with considerably less lead time than Madden NFL 24. While the industry overall hasn’t greatly increased spending year-over-year, the hardware market has fluctuated in the last month.
|August 2023 Dollar Sales, Millions||August|
|Total Video Game Sales||$4,082||$4,203||3%|
|Video Game Content (Physical & Digital Full Game, DLC/MTX and Subscription consumer spending across Console, Cloud, Mobile*, Portable, PC and VR platforms)||$3,564||$3,715||4%|
|Video Game Hardware||$376||$328||-13%|
|Video Game Accessories||$142||$159||12%|
“Video game hardware spending fell 13% when compared to a year ago, to $328 million,” said Mat Piscatella, Circana’s executive producer for games reports. “PlayStation 5 dollar sales fell by a single-digit percentage in the month when compared to a year ago, while both Switch and Xbox Series declined by a double-digit percentage.”
Hardware sales were down similarly last month — 19% to be specific — and it’s likely for similar reasons. The industry mitigated some of its supply chain issues last summer that were choking hardware sales, meaning that sales were up dramatically. Accessories sales, on the other hand, have risen, with the PlayStation DualSense being the biggest seller and the PlayStation VR2 also ranking in the top 8.
|Year-to-Date 2023 Dollar Sales, Millions||YTD End|
|Total Video Game Sales||$34,359||$34,885||2%|
|Video Game Content (Physical & Digital Full Game, DLC/MTX and Subscription consumer spending across Console, Cloud, Mobile*, Portable, PC and VR platforms)||$30,086||$30,231||0%|
|Video Game Hardware||$2,869||$3,247||13%|
|Video Game Accessories||$1,404||$1,407||0%|
“PlayStation 5 continued to lead the 2023 hardware market across both units and dollars. Year-to-date hardware spending was 13% higher when compared to the same period in 2022, at $3.2 billion,” continued Piscatella. “Accessories spending in Aug grew by 12% vs YA, to $159M. 7 of the top 8 best-selling accessories of August in dollar sales were PlayStation DualSense gamepads, with PlayStation VR2 ranking as the only non-DualSense gamepad appearing among the top 8.”
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Circana August 2023: Top 20 best-selling games in the U.S.
|1||NEW||Madden NFL 24||Electronic Arts|
|2||NEW||Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon||Bandai Namco Entertainment|
|3||1||Remnant II||Multiple Video Game Manufacturers|
|4||3||Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022)||Activision Blizzard (Corp)|
|5||4||Hogwarts Legacy||Warner Bros. Games|
|6||7||The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom*||Nintendo|
|7||2||Diablo IV||Activision Blizzard (Corp)|
|8||10||MLB: The Show^||Multiple Video Game Manufacturers|
|9||14||Minecraft||Multiple Video Game Manufacturers|
|10||12||Mario Kart 8*||Nintendo|
|12||11||Star Wars: Jedi: Survivor||Electronic Arts|
|13||8||Street Fighter 6||Capcom USA|
|14||9||Elden Ring||Bandai Namco Entertainment|
|15||15||FIFA 23||Electronic Arts|
|16||27||God of War: Ragnarok||Sony (Corp)|
|17||5||Final Fantasy XVI||Square Enix Inc (Corp)|
|18||35||Gran Turismo 7||Sony (Corp)|
|19||17||Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales||Sony (Corp)|
|20||21||Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Siege||Ubisoft|
A Madden title taking the top spot for its release month is no surprise — it’s the 24th year in a row that the Madden NFL series has done this. As noted above, Armored Core VI made it to second place despite only having one day of sales (including pre-orders) to report.
God of War Ragnarök likely got a bump up the list thanks to a recent sale of PS5s that come with the game bundled. It could also have been bolstered by rumors that a DLC is in development. Similarly, Gran Turismo 7 likely also jumped into the Top 20 thanks to a boost from the launch of the Gran Turismo film.
Where is Baldur’s Gate 3?
There were several August releases that didn’t make it onto the bestseller list. Bomb Rush Cyberfunk, Stray Gods and Immortals of Aveum were released during the reporting period but didn’t break the Top 20. Immortals, at least, is reported to have seen poor sales that may have led to layoffs at developer Ascendant Studios.
One of August’s most-discussed releases was Larian Studio’s RPG Baldur’s Gate 3. However, despite the game’s positive reviews and audience feedback, it’s not on the Circana chart. According to Piscatella, this is because Larian Studios is not a member of Circana’s reporting panel. However, he noted that it “would have been right up there” and that it “helped drive 132% growth in digital premium download spending in the PC, Cloud, and non-Console VR content segment.”
Circana August 2023: Best-selling games of the year so far
|1||1||Hogwarts Legacy||Warner Bros. Games|
|2||2||The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom*||Nintendo|
|3||3||Diablo IV||Activision Blizzard (Corp)|
|4||4||Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022)||Activision Blizzard (Corp)|
|5||5||Star Wars: Jedi: Survivor||Electronic Arts|
|6||NEW||Madden NFL 24||Electronic Arts|
|7||6||Resident Evil 4 (2023)||Capcom USA|
|8||7||MLB: The Show^||Multiple Video Game Manufacturers|
|9||8||Dead Island 2||Plaion|
|10||9||Final Fantasy XVI||Square Enix Inc (Corp)|
|11||10||Street Fighter 6||Capcom USA|
|12||11||FIFA 23||Electronic Arts|
|13||18||Remnant II||Multiple Video Game Manufacturers|
|14||12||Dead Space (2023)||Electronic Arts|
|15||13||Elden Ring||Bandai Namco Entertainment|
|16||14||Madden NFL 23||Electronic Arts|
|17||15||Mario Kart 8*||Nintendo|
|18||16||Minecraft||Multiple Video Game Manufacturers|
|19||17||The Last of Us: Part I||Sony (Corp)|
|20||NEW||Armored Core VI: Fires of Rubicon||Bandai Namco Entertainment|
The year-to-date charts see the addition of both Madden NFL 24 and Armored Core VI. As with the August charts, Armored Core VI is on the list despite being only one day into the reporting period, so its debuting at 20th place is not a surprise. Last month’s Remnant II, which similarly launched only four days before the end of the July reporting period, debuted at 18th and has moved up to 13th in the time since. It’s the only game that has moved up the list.
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