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2021 sets record for US games spending at $60.4bn | US Annual Report


NeoGAFs Kent Brockman

US games sales set a record in 2021, with total consumer spending reaching $60.4 billion. This represents an 8% increase year-over-year, according to tracking firm NPD's latest report.

Software comprised the majority of the year's revenue (85%), with game content spending reaching $51.7 billion in 2021. This included digital games, DLC, subscriptions across consoles, cloud, mobile, portable, PC and VR hardware. Software sales saw a growth of 7% compared to 2020.

Call of Duty: Vanguard was the best-selling game of 2021, followed by another CoD title, Black Ops: Cold War. This is the 13th year consecutively that the Call of Duty series tops the annual US charts. Madden NFL 22 came in at third for 2021.

Taking a look at exclusives, Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales was the best-telling PlayStation title, Pokemon: Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl were number 1 on Nintendo platforms for the year, and Forza Horizon 5 was the top Microsoft exclusive throughout 2021.

Hardware sales saw more growth than software with console revenues reaching $6 billion last year, up 14% from $5.3 billion in 2020. The Nintendo Switch lead the year in unit and dollar sales at the best-selling console of the year.

Consumer spending on game accessories also increase 2% in 2021, for a total of $2.7 billion. Sony's White DualSense Wireless Controller was the best-selling gamepad throughout the year.

The NPD report also highlighted the best sellers of December 2021, with Call of Duty: Vanguard taking the top spot, followed by Halo Infinite and Pokemon: Brilliant Diamond/Shining Pearl. Consumer spending saw a decline of 1% compared to 2020 as it reached $7.4 billion during the month.

Hardware sales in December was down 3% to $1.32 billion as the Nintendo Switch was also the best-selling platform of December.

Here's the 2021 top 20 games (physical and digital) ranked on dollar sales, data courtesy of NPD:

1Call of Duty: Vanguard (Activision Blizzard)
2Call of Duty: Black Ops: Cold War (Activision Blizzard)
3Madden NFL 22 (EA)
4Pokemon: Brilliant Diamond/Shining Pearl* (Nintendo)
5Battlefield 2042 (EA)
6Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales (Sony)
7Mario Kart 8* (Nintendo)
8Resident Evil: Village (Capcom)
9MLB: The Show 21^ (Sony)
10Super Mario 3D World* (Nintendo)
11Far Cry 6 (Ubisoft)
12FIFA 22 (EA)
13Minecraft (Microsoft)
14Animal Crossing: New Horizons* (Nintendo)
15NBA 2K22* (2K)
16Assassin's Creed: Valhalla (Ubisoft)
17Super Smash Bros. Ultimate* (Nintendo)*
18Back 4 Blood (Warner Bros)
19Mortal Kombat 11 (Warner Bros)
20Forza Horizon 5 (Microsoft)
* Digital sales not included

^ Xbox Digital sales not included
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