US video game sales fall 34 percent in January

February 9, 2012 - 9:15 PM

LOS ANGELES (AP) — U.S. retail sales of video game hardware, software and accessories fell 34 percent in January from a year earlier to $751 million due to the lack of new game titles, according to market researcher NPD Group.

NPD analyst Liam Callahan said the dearth of new games likely resulted in fewer people going to stores and buying other recent releases on impulse.

"Shoppers were not drawn to stores due to new launch activity," he said.

Callahan said sales of titles released before the holidays were down 31 percent in January compared to a year ago.

Sales of console and portable software — the video games themselves — fell 38 percent to $356 million.

That's a bigger decline than the 12 percent drop forecast by Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter.

Activision's "Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3" was the top seller for the third-consecutive month following its early November release.

Hardware sales fell 38 percent to $200 million, while accessories sales were down 18 percent at $195 million. Sales were down because of the success of Microsoft's Kinect motion controller a year ago.