Mass Effect 3
NPD: Mass Effect 3 Doubles Opening Month Sales of ME2
Written Friday, April 13, 2012 By Lee Bradley
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NPD Group has released its March 2012 retail sales report, detailing software and hardware figures in the US for last month. It’s not very pretty, with total physical sales down 25% year-on-year.

On the software front, Mass Effect 3 clocked in as the best-selling title, with debut monthly sales twice that of Mass Effect 2′s 2010 effort. It should be noted, however, that the sci-fi RPG launched on PC, Xbox 360 and PS3. ME2 launched on just PC and Xbox 360.

Meanwhile, Xbox 360 made it 15 months in a row as the best-selling console, with over 371,000 sales.

The overall picture is poor, however. Total industry retail sales fell 25% year-over-year to $1.1 billion. Software is down 26% year-on-year to $585.1 million. Hardware is down 35% year-on-year to $323.5 million.

NPD analyst Anita Frazier isn’t surprised. Indeed, she rightly identifies revenue streams beyond retail as constituting an increasingly meaningful chunk of the industry.

“Outside of new physical retail sales, we find that the consumer spend on content on used games, rentals, subscriptions, mobile games, social network games, digital full game downloads and add-on content accounted for an additional $2.5 billion to $2.7 billion across the US, UK France and Germany in Q1 2012,” she said.

SCEA’s Sr. Director of Corporate Communications echoed a similar sentiment. “We’re seeing strong digital downloads across the board,” he said, “including full digital-only purchases and extremely high conversion rates for digital demos to full game purchases with titles such as Unit 13, which showcases PS Vita’s unique 3G and shooter capabilities.”

You can find the full results below, for the period spanning February 26 to March 31, a five-week span.


  1. Mass Effect 3 – PC, PS3, 360 – EA
  2. Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City – PS3, 360 – Capcom
  3. MLB: The Show – PS3, Vita – Sony
  4. NBA 2K12 – PC, PSP, PS2, PS3, Wii, 360 PS2 – Take 2
  5. SSX 2012 – PS3, 360 -EA
  6. Street Fighter X Tekken – PS3, 360 – Capcom
  7. Mario Party 9 – Wii – Nintendo
  8. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 – PC, PS3, Wii, 360 – Activision
  9. Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm – PS3, 360 – Namco Bandai
  10. MLB 2K12 NDS, PC, PSP, PS2, PS3, Wii, 360 – Take 2


  1. Xbox 360 - 371,000 (-14.3 per cent)
  2. PlayStation 3 - ~337,000 (-7.7 per cent)
  3. 3DS - 225,000 (-43.8 per cent)
  4. Wii - 175,000 (-39.7 per cent)


User Comments
Forum Posts: 3954
Comment #1 by Pabs_85
Friday, April 13, 2012 @ 05:11:53 AM
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Prob would have sold more if GAME/station had its stock

Forum Posts: 7
Comment #2 by SweGabe
Friday, April 13, 2012 @ 05:23:14 AM
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I'd like to think the drop is because of gamers finally having enough with some games/companies and makes a protest with their wallet.
I sure know that is the reason why I didn't buy Modern Warfare 3, and don't intend to buy any more CoD games until they stop copy/paste the series.

Forum Posts: 190
Comment #3 by XBOTS SUZORX
Friday, April 13, 2012 @ 05:28:11 AM
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need to expand HDD space to really grow PS4 software sales....maybe save installs on a cloud server instead of locally to conserve space?

Forum Posts: 212
Comment #4 by randomguy666
Friday, April 13, 2012 @ 05:30:27 AM
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Two reasons for the bad sales:

Firstly, stopping the supply to Game and Gamestation was a huge mistake. Being the largest group of stores in the UK, it was always going to hit their profits.

Secondly, the ending has caused so much up-roar, that many people just don't want to play the game. Many others have taken their copies back and gotten a full refund because of the "false advertising" that Bioware made about said endings.

People are speaking with their wallets... will companies listen though, that is the question.

Forum Posts: 384
Comment #5 by HuDaFuK
Friday, April 13, 2012 @ 05:44:34 AM
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Personally, I'm becoming less and less inclined to buy games when they're released because just waiting a while can save you a whole load of money. Even with the industry's crackdown on used games sales, you can usually save 50% on a brand new copy of a game just by holding out for a few months. Unless it's something I NEED to get, I'll wait and save a few quid, thanks.

Forum Posts: 9104
Comment #6 by EEHHHHHH
Friday, April 13, 2012 @ 05:51:54 AM
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And yet again, with worldwide sales into account, the PS3 is the best selling home console for any given month since last Christmas.

Forum Posts: 102
Comment #7 by happyman778
Friday, April 13, 2012 @ 08:22:29 AM
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i agree with all of the above, but what suprises me the most is the RE:ORC is second on the games list. In my opinion that game is awful

Forum Posts: 2972
Comment #8 by dante_kinkade
Friday, April 13, 2012 @ 10:54:17 AM
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People forget that lots are also just waiting for the price to drop, i know i am, that and i don't care how much whining and bitching some did.

Forum Posts: 103
Comment #9 by maur1c1o
Friday, April 13, 2012 @ 11:54:59 AM
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Im not surprised console and hardware sales are down im sure most people who intended on buying a console have done so already its been out for more than 7 years As for games well its almost the same shit out year after year i think most people have had enough of constatly buying the same shit but im sure its more to do with the credit crunch most people have less money now and quite a lot dont have jobs and turn to second hand as its cheaper.

Forum Posts: 2020
Comment #10 by YurtleTehTurtle
Saturday, April 14, 2012 @ 04:11:40 AM
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Why are people referring to GAME, the article clearly begins US sales figures.

As for the stats, no great suprises. Physical software sales are down due to the growing digital market and hardware sales are down as all listed platforms are passed their life cycle peak. Hopefully this points to new hardware in 2013 with an increased capacity for full retail downloads (> 0.5 TB hard drives and more competitive pricing please Sony).

Forum Posts: 239
Comment #11 by Overtkill21
Sunday, April 15, 2012 @ 11:29:42 AM
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Of course game figures are down, we are in the downward cycle of this generation of systems. If sales weren't down I'd wonder what exactly was driving the growth.

Next year, the launch of new systems by all major companies will result in an increase, and then we get an article all surprised by that fact.

Forum Posts: 0
Comment #12 by plagas13
Tuesday, April 24, 2012 @ 12:12:29 PM
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The only reason why sales are higher is due to the fact mass effect 2 was released on ps3 as well.

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Game Info
Electronic Arts


US March 06, 2012
Europe March 09, 2012
Japan March 15, 2012

Resolution: 480p, 720p
Sound: Dolby Digital 5.1
Players: 1
Online Players : 2-4
ESRB: Mature
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