NPD: Wii Rules, Fable 2 Strong, Guitar Hero Stumbles

The most anticipated NPD results for the gaming industry are in and the verdict for October 2008 ranges anywhere from outstanding to disheartening, depending on your point of view.

The clear winner for the month is, surprise surprise, Nintendo. A whopping 803,000 Wii units sold (including one to my father), a jump from the 687,000 that sold the previous month. Xbox 360 sold less than half across its skus at 371,000 units, slightly above September. Playstation 3, the most expensive console and most popular Blu-ray Disc player, moved 190,000 consoles. Unfortunately for Sony that is 18% fewer than the previous month.

The top game of October goes to Fable 2 on Xbox 360 with 790,000 games sold. Looking through the Demon Doors from the ouside to comprise the rest of the top 5 are Wii Fit, Fallout 3, Mario Kart and Wii Play. Notice 3 of the top 5 are Wii titles.

Guitar Hero World Tour, now with the all-new much pricier version, sold 534,000 games in its first week. That would be a fantastic number if last year’s Guitar Hero III didn’t move 1.4 million games in its first 6 days.

Overall the gaming industry has reason to celebrate. With the economy and stocks in the toilet, spending on videogames is up roughly 35% year-to-date compared to 2007. Who needs a Halo title to succeed, right?

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