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Video Game Sales Up 37% Year Over Year in August

By Eric Volkman – Sep 14, 2020 at 8:46PM

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Many of us are passing the time in shutdown by playing video games, as evidenced by the latest numbers.

August might have been a hot coronavirus-infected mess for many people, but it was a fine month for the video game industry. According to data compiled by market researcher The NPD Group, video game sales leaped 37% higher on a year-over-year basis during the month to land at $2.9 billion.

That's adding some pixels onto the year-to-date amount. Calendar 2020 sales now tally $25.9 billion, representing a 22% improvement over the same period of 2019.

Person on a couch playing a video game.

Image source: Getty Images.

The major factor in this rise is, of course, the coronavirus pandemic. Video games are an easy go-to entertainment option for consumers with the right equipment. The extra hours spent at home these days have to be filled somehow.

The pandemic isn't the only reason for the dramatic rise, however.

August saw the release of several new titles in long-running and popular series. Notable among these was the No. 1-selling Madden NFL 21 from Electronic Arts (EA -1.52%), which topped the charts despite only officially getting released for multiple platforms in the final days of the month. That performance is par for the course since Madden is the bestselling video game franchise in history.

Electronic Arts also took the No. 2 position for August with another new athletic title, EA Sports UFC 4. The game has been released on Microsoft's (MSFT -1.27%) Xbox One and Sony's (SONY -1.37%) PlayStation 4.

As for other companies in the segment, Nintendo (NTDOY -2.05%) had a strong position on the bestseller list, taking exactly half of the top 20 slots. Its bestseller in August was the buzz-worthy Animal Crossing: New Horizons


Teresa Kersten, an employee of LinkedIn, a Microsoft subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool’s board of directors. Eric Volkman has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Microsoft. The Motley Fool recommends Electronic Arts and Nintendo and recommends the following options: long January 2021 $85 calls on Microsoft and short January 2021 $115 calls on Microsoft. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Stocks Mentioned

Electronic Arts Inc. Stock Quote
Electronic Arts Inc.
$115.64 (-1.52%) $-1.78
Nintendo Co., Ltd. Stock Quote
Nintendo Co., Ltd.
$52.60 (-2.05%) $-1.10
Microsoft Corporation Stock Quote
Microsoft Corporation
$237.92 (-1.27%) $-3.06
Sony Corporation Stock Quote
Sony Corporation
$68.43 (-1.37%) $0.95

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