US consumer spending data on games is now available thanks to Circana, and it’s going to be disappointing. Total spending reached $4.6 billion, which is 5% decline from last year. Breaking down the numbers reveals only one sector was negative for the month, but it’s the most important one: software.
Game sales made up 83% of total revenue for the month, but it was down 7% year-to-year, to $3.83 billion. While the number is still fairly good, it’s still a decrease, and it’s easy to under why considering the lack of major releases during March. Resident Evil 4 was the top seller, while February’s best-selling game, Hogwarts Legacy was second, with MLB The Show 23 coming in third.
The only other 2023 release in the top 10 was WWE 2k23, with even Elden Ring and The Last of Us: Part 1 managing to rank significantly high on the chart.
Hardware spending did see an increase, of 10%, reaching $566 million buoyed by strong sales of Sony’s PlayStation 5 now that shortages are over. Microsoft’s Xbox Series S/X consoles came in second, with Nintendo bringing up the rear as number three. Nintendo’s major releases are coming later this year and unlike the other two, Hogwarts Legacy isn’t out yet for the Switch, giving the handheld console plenty of opportunity to gain ground during a robust year for console sales.
Nintendo Switch titles that placed on the chart for this month include the surprisingly resilient Metroid Prime: Remastered, which was a sudden release in February but still holding strong and setting franchise records. It won’t be until May that we see Nintendo claim the top spot, with the inevitable success of The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom poised to save a slightly down year for games.
The final category was again, up this month, with accessory spending climbing 1% to $239 million. Sony’s PlayStation 5 Dual Sense Edge Wireless Controller was the top seller, specifically in black, for another month.
Below are the top 20 best-selling video games in the U.S. in March 2023:
|Rank||Last month Rank||Title|
|1||New||Resident Evil 4|
|3||New||MLB: The Show 23|
|4||2||Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2|
|5||6||The Last of Us: Part 1|
|9||4||Madden NFL 23|
|10||13||Mario Kart 8|
|12||10||Octopath Traveler 2|
|13||21||Metroid Prime Remastered|
|15||11||God of War: Ragnarok|
|16||15||Kirby’s Return to Dream Land|
|20||41||Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga|