The latest US video games retail data has come out from the NPD, highlighted by an unexpected 57 percent jump in sales of physical copies of PC games. This is surprising as it runs counter to the two big trends in games distribution today, where consoles are taking the lion's share of attention and development time and PC gaming is shifting toward digital delivery. What isn't so shocking is that the game leading the charge is Bethesda's The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim, the fifth in an anthology of highly successful RPG titles. Skyrim sold 2.8 million units in November, though even that impressive number paled in comparison to Modern Warfare 3's 8.99 million across all platforms. Battlefield 3 was also a strong contender, but had to sate itself with third spot.
On the hardware front, Nintendo's Wii sales are continuing their precipitous fall from grace with drops of 28 percent in software and 32 percent in hardware sales relative to last year. The PS3, with 900,000 sales, was ahead of the Wii by 40,000 units in November, but the Xbox 360 was the clear winner for the month with a healthy 2.7 million consoles sold.
Gaming accessories took a bit of a tumble this year, generating 34 percent less in sales than in 2010, though that was to be expected given that last November's numbers were inflated by Microsoft's wildly successful Kinect launch.