Wii U sees slight bump for February, but overall hardware sales are down in the U.S.
February has proved to be another difficult month for sales in the U.S. gaming industry. Hardware sales, for all platforms (even the Wii U), on an average per week basis increased from January into February; however, video game hardware sales are down a staggering 36% compared to February 2012 -- a clear sign gamers are ready for the next generation of consoles.
And I'm not talking about the Wii U, which posted another week of dismal sales. Nintendo's new console did see a slight increase in sales from last month, but, then again, it's not too hard to improve on the pitiful 57,000 or so units sold in January. The NPD Group has said that Wii U sales on a weekly average increased around 40 percent, which puts February's sales around 64,000. Remember, January was a five-week month which accounts for the difference in numbers. Another month of poor Wii U sales can be attributed to the lack of notable game releases for Nintendo's new console. That will hopefully change this month with the release of LEGO City: Undercover.
It's estimated that the Xbox 360 sold 302,000, topping all hardware sales for the month. February marks the 19th straight month the Xbox 360 has led hardware sales in the United States.
Overall, total video game sales in the U.S. are down 25% from where they were last February. It's important to note, though, that the NPD does not count digital sales, DLC, or in-game purchases. Even with those, I think it's clear the industry is ready for change. That change should come later this year as Sony releases its highly anticipated PlayStation 4. Microsoft is also expected to release its next Xbox around then, the company has been tight-lipped on its plans. Still, we know the Xbox 720, or whatever it's going to be called, is out there.