The holiday season brought no relief for the embattled video game industry. Traditional consoles and software sales are under siege from new products that run on mobile handsets and tablets, and within social networks like Facebook Inc.’s (NASDAQ: FB). The release of new games and new hardware have done nothing to stop the erosion of revenue in the traditional game industry.
According to the Associated Press:
U.S. retail sales of video games and gaming systems fell 22 percent in December, capping a year of declining sales for the industry.
Research firm NPD Group said Thursday that overall sales fell to $3.21 billion from $4.1 billion in December 2011. NPD estimates that sales of new game hardware, software and accessories account for about half of what consumers spend on gaming.
Sales of video games themselves, excluding PC titles, tumbled 26 percent to $1.54 billion. Sales of hardware — gaming systems such as the Xbox 360 and the Wii U — fell 20 percent to $1.07 billion.