I've been wondering when (or if) the video gaming industry would ever see a downturn in sales during these tough economic times, and the time has arrived. At least for a short time, anyway. Sales were down in March of 2009, compared to March of 2008. Industry leaders, however, are hesitant to pin the decline in sales to the economic downturn. Rather, they site very strong sales in March of 2008 due to the introduction of popular new games, as well as the Easter holiday having been in March of last year.
Overall U.S. video game sales fell 17 percent in March to $1.43 billion, research group NPD said recently, a revealing figure for an industry that had so far shown resilience in the economic downturn.
Video game software sales dropped 17 percent to $792.8 million in the month, while hardware sales fell 18 percent to $455.6 million.
NPD attributed some of the decline to the fact that Easter fell in March last year, boosting purchases for gifts.
For the first quarter of 2009 as a whole, video game sales were flat at $4.25 billion.