Both the year and decade wound to a close a couple of weeks ago, and so it's time to reflect back on a lot of data to see where things shook out. The NPD Group published a large amount of data today on both the year 2019 and the decade in terms of games sales. You might not be surprised who emerged victorious.
While many games came and went, ultimately Call of Duty owned the decade. Not only was the 2019 reboot of Modern Warfare the best-selling game of 2019, but 10 of the top 15 best-selling games of the last decade were Call of Duty games. 2010's Call of Duty: Black Ops led the charge at second place, followed by Black Ops 2, Modern Warfare 3, Black Ops 3, and Ghosts.
US NPD SW - 2010-2019 Top 10 Sellers - Grand Theft Auto V was the best-selling game of the decade. pic.twitter.com/2xfGtaueqv- Mat Piscatella (@MatPiscatella) January 16, 2020
Despite the Call of Duty surge though, Rockstar managed to take the top spot with Grand Theft Auto 5. This shouldn't be too shocking, seeing as between the single-player campaign and the always-evolving GTA Online, it's been constantly appearing on best-selling charts for some time. Red Dead Redemption 2 moseys onto the list as well; if you want something that isn't Call of Duty or Rockstar Games, you'll have to head down to number 10, where a lone Minecraft makes the cut.
Compare the best-sellers of 2010 through 2019 to those of 2000 through 2009, where Guitar Hero and Wii Fit dominated the charts, and it seems wild. But games are changing as well; subscription services like the Xbox Game Pass are changing the way we buy and play video games, and the peripheral-laden rhythm fever of the 00's seems distant.
It's odd to think of how odd this decade's list will look in ten year's time, and how game sales metrics will tell the stories of these years to future generations. Regardless, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild cracked the top 20, so I've still got hope for a brighter tomorrow.