It has become rather common to see video games selling better and more commonly on digital platforms than in a physical format as of late. But October 2023 nearly saw a change in the UK market.
Because Gamesindustry.biz has reported that digital games sales were down by 24% over October 2022, with a total of 1.6 million digital games sold during the month. Physical games on the other hand were up by 8%, with 1.08 million being shifted during the month. It's said that the reason for this change relates to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III being launched in November, whereas Modern Warfare II debuted in October last year.
In terms of games specifically, we're told that while EA Sports FC 24 was the biggest physical and digital game of the month, the title did manage to shift 16% less units than FIFA 23 did. Marvel's Spider-Man 2 was the second-biggest game of the month, and the best-selling new game of the month, with sales that were 2% higher than God of War: Ragnarök, 94% higher than Spider-Man: Miles Morales, and 9% lower than Spider-Man.
It should be said that while Super Mario Bros. Wonder did come in third in the physical charts, there is no word on how big its digital sales were during October as Nintendo does not share that data. It is thought that it is likely the biggest digital Mario launch of all-time however, since the game smashed all manner of physical records. This does mean that Assassin's Creed Mirage came in third in the digital charts (and fourth in the physical charts).
Looking at consoles, sales in general here were 10% down month-over-month, with PS5 dropping 4%, Xbox Series down 33%, and Nintendo Switch actually up 15%. 584,000 accessories were also sold throughout October, which is 15% lower than October 2022.
So, despite a mega month for exciting and massively acclaimed titles, October 2023 has actually been less impressive than expected in a sales mindset for the UK.