Codemasters F1 2018 retained top spot in this week’s UKIE/GFK top ten with a sales drop of only 49% on last week’s figures. Large sales drops are common in a title’s second week of release but F1 2018’s strong performance is highlighted by the fact that it kept another high-profile title away from top spot.
Pro Evolution Soccer 2019 (PES 2019) couldn’t have been much closer to F1 2018, missing out on top spot by a mere 250 unit sales. However, given that it was the game’s first week of release Konami are likely to be disappointed by the performance of their flagship IP.
Pro Evolution Soccer has long fought valiantly in the shade cast by EA’s FIFA series. For prolonged periods, notably in the PS2 era, the underdog actually prevailed and PES was considered the market leader for playable football simulations.
PES’s decline since then is emphasised by a 40% drop in first week sales for PES 2018 compared to its predecessor PES 2017. The fact that Konami have lost its UEFA Champions rights, which it held for ten years, has been cited by some as a reason for the unusually low figures.
To make matters worse, the Champions League will appear in FIFA 19 when it launches this autumn. The scale of the challenge PES faces is emphasised by the fact that FIFA 2018 remains in the UKIE/GFK top ten, just eight places below PES 19 despite the fact that the FIFA game is approaching the end of its lifecycle and PES 2019 is brand new.
A title with even more astonishing longevity takes third place in the charts. Grand Theft Auto V has broken all kinds of sales records and continues to perform well in advance of the release of Red Dead Redemption 2, which looks likely to replace it as Rockstar’s flagship title next month. Crash Bandicoot: N.Sane Trilogy, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds and God of War also make the top ten and highlight their enduring appeal.
Aside from PES 2019 there are a further two new entries in this week’s chart, PS4 exclusive Yakuza Kiwami 2 and the Nintendo Switch exclusive Monster Hunter Generations Ultimate.
A title that narrowly missed out on the top ten, PSVR exclusive Firewall Zero Hour, deserves an honourable mention. PSVR exclusives have struggled to make a mark as the medium continues to find its feet, but the first person shooter has received promising reviews so far and appears to have contributed to a rise in PSVR bundle sales.
A more extended list of top sellers can be found here.