The video game sector had a blowout month in December thanks to a strong slate of popular titles and the continued strength of the Nintendo Wii, which remained in short supply through the holidays.
Sales of video game software in the U.S. jumped 36% during the month compared to last year, according to data from NPD Group released late Thursday.
That came in ahead of most analysts' estimates. Sales of game hardware grew 17% as consumers continued to snap up next-generation consoles from Nintendo, Sony, Microsoft.
The Nintendo Wii ruled the day, coming in with sales of 1.35 million units for the month compared to 1.26 million units for the Xbox 360 and 797,600 units for the PlayStation 3. The PS3 has seen a huge boost in sales over the last two months thanks to a sharp price reduction for the console, which debuted on the market in late 2006 at the high price of $600.