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PC retail game sales dip in '07

$60 million drop from 2006, according to data crunchers

UPDATE: US PC game sales brought in $910.7 million at retail in 2007, down from $970 million in 2006, according to NPD figures. World of Warcraft, The Sims and Call of Duty 4 ruled the top 10.

The Entertainment Software Association released the PC figures on Thursday, revealing that overall US computer and videogame sales reached a record $18.85 billion in 2007.

NPD said a total of 36.4 million units of PC game software were sold last year at US retailers.

Console software sales dwarfed PC game sales, raking in $6.6 billion (153.9 million units). Handheld software brought in a record $2 billion (77.5 million).

Total software unit sales across all platforms were 267.8 million in 2007.

While the figures imply that PC gaming is a stagnant market, the NPD Group doesn't factor in digital download revenues from services like Steam, subscriptions from online games or MMOs like World of Warcraft (which charges around $15 per month to 2.5 million North American subscribers) or micro-transactions.

The ESA also noted that in terms of unit sales, 15.5 percent of all games sold in 2007 were rated "M," compared to 56.5 percent of games that were rated "E 10+" or lower and 28 percent of games that were rated "T."

Just three of the US' top-10 games in unit sales were M-rated. "This is clearly an industry strongly rooted in family-friendly entertainment, and not on Mature-rated titles," argued ESA president Michael Gallagher.

NPD Group supplied Next-Gen with the top 10 PC retail titles for the whole of 2007.

1. PC World Of Warcraft: Burning Crusade Expansion Pack*, Vivendi 2.25mm
2. PC World Of Warcraft, Vivendi 914K
3. PC The Sims 2 Seasons Expansion Pack, Electronic Arts 433K
4. PC Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare*, Activision 383K
5. PC Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars*, Electronic Arts 343K
6. PC Sim City 4 Deluxe, Electronic Arts 284K
7. PC The Sims 2, Electronic Arts 281K
8. PC The Sims 2, Bon Voyage Expansion Pack Electronic Arts 271K
9. PC MS Age Of Empires III, Microsoft 259K
10. PC The Sims 2 Pets Expansion Pack, Electronic Arts 236K

*Includes Collector's, Kane Editions

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