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Star Wars Jedi: Survivor and Dead Island 2 sail to the top of the best-seller list in a month replete with popular new releases, according to industry-tracking firm Circana (formerly known as The NPD Group and IRI). According to its latest report, seven newly released games (or bundles, in the case of two of the titles) have made it into the top 20 list. That said, the number of actual sales is down slightly. The PlayStation 5 continues to sell well, though the Switch led the market in number of units sold.
|April 2023 Dollar Sales, Millions||Apr
|Total Video Game Sales||$4,320||$4,123||-5%|
|Video Game Content (Physical & Digital Full Game, DLC/MTX and Subscription consumer spending across Console, Cloud, Mobile*, Portable, PC and VR platforms)||$3,819||$3,598||-6%|
|Video Game Hardware||$343||$367||7%|
|Video Game Accessories||$158||$158||0%|
“Spending on video game content declined 6% in April when compared to a year ago, to $3.6 billion. All segments of content spending fell year-on-year in April except for non-mobile subscription content spending, which increased 2% versus April 2022,” said Circana analyst Mat Piscatella. “This is the highest video game hardware spend for an April month since the $420M reached in April 2020. Double-digit percentage growth in both PS5 and Switch dollar sales offset declines on other platforms.”
The slight decline in dollar sales despite the number of new releases could be down to last year’s Elden Ring and LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga being sales juggernauts. It took some time for the former to be dethroned from the top spot on the list. Another factor is that some buyers may have waited for May’s major release — The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom. It will be interesting to see how next month’s chart shakes out.
April 2023 Circana: Top 20 best-selling games of the month in the U.S.
|1||NEW||Star Wars Jedi: Survivor||Electronic Arts|
|2||NEW||Dead Island 2||Plaion|
|3||3||MLB: The Show 23^||Multiple Video Game Manufacturers|
|4||1||Resident Evil 4 (2023)||Capcom USA|
|5||4||Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022)||Activision Blizzard (Corp)|
|6||2||Hogwarts Legacy||Warner Bros. Interactive|
|7||NEW||PGA Tour||Electronic Arts|
|8||NEW||Mega Man Battle Network Legacy Collection||Capcom USA|
|9||6||FIFA 23||Electronic Arts|
|10||10||Mario Kart 8*||Nintendo|
|11||NEW||Minecraft Legends||Microsoft (Corp)|
|12||8||Elden Ring||Bandai Namco Entertainment|
|13||11||Minecraft||Multiple Video Game Manufacturers|
|14||NEW||Final Fantasy I-VI Bundle||Square Enix Inc (Corp)|
|15||NEW||Advance Wars 1+2: Re-Boot Camp*||Nintendo|
|16||23||New Super Mario Bros.*||Nintendo|
|17||5||The Last of Us: Part 1||Sony (Corp)|
|19||9||Madden NFL 23||Electronic Arts|
|20||26||Super Mario 3D World*||Nintendo|
April saw the release of several titles that made it onto the charts, including PGA Tour, Minecraft Legends and the justly delayed-but-finally released Advance Wars 1+2: Re-Boot Camp. Two of the new games that made the best-seller list were bundled rereleases, Mega Man Battle Network Legacy Collection and Final Fantasy I-VI Bundle.
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Two other games that have come back onto the list from slightly lower numbers are New Super Mario Bros and Super Mario 3D World. One can probably presume that the reason they’re seeing slightly higher numbers is the April release of the Super Mario Bros movie.
Jedi and zombies are the big tickets
Star Wars Jedi: Survivor is the top game on the list, likely thanks to its well-known IP and good word-of-mouth from the previous game, Fallen Order. It managed to reach the top despite some negative chatter about the game’s poor PO performance. Electronic Arts CEO Andrew Wilson said in a recent earnings call that Survivor is “pacing very strongly against our expectations” especially compared with Fallen Order.
Perhaps a bit more surprising is that Dead Island 2 managed to reach so high on the list. Its lengthy development time had become memetic long before it was released, and it turned out relatively well. However, the fact it managed to join Jedi: Survivor in displacing Hogwarts Legacy and Resident Evil 4 on the list is perhaps more of an achievement than one was expecting.
April 2023 Circana: 20 best-selling games of 2022 so far
|1||1||Hogwarts Legacy||Warner Bros. Interactive|
|2||2||Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (2022)||Activision Blizzard (Corp)|
|3||3||Resident Evil 4 (2023)||Capcom USA|
|4||NEW||Star Wars Jedi: Survivor||Electronic Arts|
|5||4||MLB: The Show 23^||Multiple Video Game Manufacturers|
|6||NEW||Dead Island 2||Plaion|
|7||5||Dead Space (2023)||Electronic Arts|
|8||7||FIFA 23||Electronic Arts|
|9||6||Madden NFL 23||Electronic Arts|
|10||8||Elden Ring||Bandai Namco Entertainment|
|11||9||The Last of Us: Part 1||Sony (Corp)|
|12||10||God of War: Ragnarok||Sony (Corp)|
|13||11||Mario Kart 8*||Nintendo|
|14||14||Minecraft||Multiple Video Game Manufacturers|
|16||13||Fire Emblem Engage*||Nintendo|
|17||15||Forspoken||Square Enix Inc (Corp)|
|19||17||Octopath Traveler II||Square Enix Inc (Corp)|
|20||18||NBA 2K23*||Take 2 Interactive (Corp)|
Hogwarts Legacy and Resident Evil 4 remain the best-selling new games of the year, though Jedi: Survivor and Dead Island 2 debuting at positions 4 and 6 on the list, respectively is a good start. They are the only two of the new games to make it on the year-to-date best-seller list. Everything else on the list is more-or-less unchanged, having simply shifted down a few places to make room for the newcomers. It’s probably not a surprise that Jedi: Survivor has a bit further to go before it overtakes Modern Warfare 2.
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