Well, it was bound to happen.
The February NPD results are in and before we even bother with the monthly numbers, we should announce that Call of Duty: Black Ops is now the best-selling video game in US history: the sold number has hit 13.7 million. …anyway, moving on- after a 5% slip in January, things are looking up after February, when the industry enjoyed a 3% rise to hit $1.36 billion. Hardware was up the most; this category rose 10% to $466.9 million, with the Xbox 360 leading the way at 535,000 units (a February record). The Wii sold 454,000 and while Sony is not in the habit of releasing hardware sales numbers, NPD analyst Anita Frazier confirmed that all three consoles "realized a unit sales increase over last February." So that's something.
As for software, that side fell 8% to $637.4 million. Black Ops was once again atop the list, while Capcom's Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds landed (perhaps surprisingly) in the runner-up slot, followed by the Wii exclusive, Just Dance 2 . NBA 2K11 and Dead Space 2 rounded out the top five, and we notice Bulletstorm and Killzone 3 coming in at seven and eight respectively. And here's Sony's statement, from SCEA Sr. Director of Corporate Communications, Patrick Seybold:
"NPD’s February numbers illustrate continued growth of the entire PlayStation 3 ecosystem, including increases in hardware, software and peripheral sales. PlayStation’s exclusive titles, combined with stereoscopic 3D and precision motion controlled gaming, continue to resonate with consumers, and we look forward to furthering the momentum with MotorStorm Apocalypse and SOCOM 4 next month."