NPD December 2009: Nintendo King of the Playground

Nintendo Trounces Competition In December Despite Third Party Displeasures

January 15, 2010 – NPD figures released on Thursday revealed that Nintendo beat out all the competition once again, and, that New Super Mario Brothers Wii, Wii Fit Plus and Wii Sports Resort were able to push Modern Warfare 2 out of the picture.

Nintendo moved 3.81 million Wii’s in December and 3.31 million DS units. The numbers trounced those for the PS3 and Xbox 360, which sold 1.36 million and 1.31 million, respectively.

In software, New Super Mario Brothers Wii sold 2.82 million copies, pushing it over 4 million units since its release. Wii Fit Plus totaled 2.41 million sales, Wii Sports Resort moved 1.79 million copies and Modern Warfare 2 sold 1.63 million Xbox 360 copies and 1.12 million PS3 copies.

The news comes amidst recent comments by gaming publishers Capcom and Sega regarding the failure of third party platforms to succeed on the Wii. While the Wii has been enormously successful, numerous game companies are considering downgrading their investment in titles for the Wii because they haven’t managed to gain a foothold on the platform.

Indeed, the Wii is dominated by Nintendo games such as Mario Kart, Super Smash Brothers, Wii Fit, and New Super Mario Brothers Wii. Titles such as Capcom’s House of the Dead: Overkill and Sega’s Madworld failed to gain significant sales on the platform despite warm critical reception. Yet, the Wii remains by far the most significant platform of this console generation. It’s titles have been the best selling and it has always outperformed its rivals in terms of sales. While the PS3 and Xbox 360 have an extensive user base, the Wii has penetrated different markets. The PS3 and Xbox 360 appeal largely to the traditional gaming audience while the Wii has been played by everyone from mom’s and dad’s to grandparent’s as well as kids. It has been enormously successful, and once again, the holiday season was extremely kind to Nintendo.

It’s also notable that the PS3 outsold the Xbox 360 in December by 5,000 units, marking a turnaround for the Playstation, which has lagged behind the Xbox 360 in North American sales. Also, Sony’s Playstation 2 continued to sell, even here in North America, racking up 333,000 unit sales despite being a decade old.

Rounding out the top 10 games of December were Wii Play, Mario Kart, Assassin’s Creed II, Left 4 Dead 2 and Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story.


December 2009 NPD Sales Figures


Wii: 3.81 million

DS: 3.31 million

PS3: 1.36 million

Xbox 360: 1.31 million

PSP: 655,000

PS2: 333,000


1. New Super Mario Brothers Wii – Wii – Nintendo – 2.82 million

2. Wii Fit Plus – Wii – Nintendo – 2.41 million

3. Wii Sports Resort – Wii – Nintendo – 1.79 million

4. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 – Xbox 360 – Activision – 1.63 million

5. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 – PS3 – Activision – 1.12 million

6. Wii Play w/remote – Wii – Nintendo – 1.01 million

7. Mario Kart w/ Wheel – Wii – Nintendo – 936,100

8. Assassin’s Creed II – Xbox 360 – Ubisoft – 783,100

9. Left 4 Dead 2 – Xbox 360 – Valve – 728,500

10. Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story – DS – Nintendo – 656,700

Source: Industry Gamers