PC Sales Decline In 2005

Sep 28, 2005
Whereas The NPD Group says the console and handheld videogames saw a total increase from $9.9 billion to a record breaking $10.3 billion between 2004 and 2005, they report the PC industry steadily declined throughout the year, and actually fell from $1.1 billion to only $953 million.
The fact that PC numbers are lower than consoles and handhelds isn't an area of concern; despite the higher number of homes with PCs, the demographic for PC games is simply smaller. On the other hand, the 14% drop over the course of a single year doesn't bode well for the platform as next-generation consoles make their big splash this year.

Though dollar numbers were down 14%, the actual number of PC games sold dropped even further from 2004. 38 million units fell into gamer hands in 2005 compared to 2004's 47 million units - ultimately a decrease of 19%.

There might be an explanation for this continual slide, though: MMOs. The NPD Group's started to realize more gamers are spending their time on subscription services, which is why they'll begin including these numbers in their figures in the spring. "We expect this will add significant dollars to the PC game market size," says NPD Group analyst Anita Frazier.

Madden NFL 06 wasn't the top telling PC game released this year (take one, hard guess at what online phenomenon topped the list), but Electronic Arts still dominated the PC sector thanks to their strong PC titles and The Sims, taking five of the top ten spots for 2005.

Top Selling Computer Games of 2005
1) World of Warcraft (Vivendi Universal) - $47 million
2) The Sims 2: University Expansion Pack (Electronic Arts) - $33 million
3) The Sims 2 (Electronic Arts) - $45 million
4) Guild Wars (NCsoft) - $48 million
5) Rollercoaster Tycoon II (Atari) - $30 million
6) Battlefield II (Electronic Arts) - $48 million
7) The Sims 2 Nightlife Expansion Pack (Electronic Arts) - $32 million
8) Age of Empires III (Microsoft) - $47 million
9) The Sims Deluxe (Electronic Arts) - $19 million
10) Call of Duty 2 (Activision) - $46 million

1UP's did you know fact of the day: World of Warcraft was not only the best selling game of 2005, but it was actually released in November 2004.

I would have expected sales to be higher since big games like SWAT and F.E.A.R came out in 05. F.E.A.R didn't even make to top 10.


Nov 15, 2005
Meh, nothing to worry about, it's those damn MMO's. Guild wars has actually sold WAY more than WoW only not in retail but over the internet (people buiyng only the account number and downloading the game) so it does not count. Just wait for the next gen PC games to come out. Most people will be going "PS3 what?".
Sep 29, 2005
Heh, I don't think so RajaF. The PS3 will be able to outdo and keep up with PC's until the system dies in my personal opinion. Hell the next generation PC titles for mid and late 2006 are using the PS3 as their base standard instead of the other way around. In the case of UT2007, the PS3 version will actually play smoother and overall run smoother then the PC version, online and off, and MoH is being built on the PS3 hardware first and foremost.


Editor /Tech Adviser
Staff member
Jan 5, 2006
I'm glad Rollercoaster Tycoon II is up there and most definitely Guild Wars! But hang a tick...RCT2? Surely they made a typo there, no?

As for F.E.A.R., it's still a fairly new game and came out late 2005 so I'm not surprised it didn't enter the top 10, probably didn't even reach the top 50. It may be in the top 10 this year though.

Mr. Solanky

Dedicated Member
Aug 28, 2005
As much as people hate to admit it, despite the sales of the PC games, PC gaming will always, and I mean ALWAYS be around. Even if the games fail compared to the consoles in terms of Sales, The PC world has a very dedicated audience behind it. And it doesn't really matter how much they sell. I mean, Look at how many users play Half-life and Half-Life 2 online. It's crazy! Let's not even talk about CS and DoD.

PC games, are usually longer then Console games, or at least they have the most replay. I bought Half-Life in 2002. I have been playing it 4 years straight. Even though those sales aren't great, they aren't bad enough to ruin the Gaming system itself.


Jan 18, 2006
Hmmm. It looks like PC games are on the decline. I hadn't seen anything new or interesting in PC games for a long time now. I wonder what the computer industry is doing about the shifting focus of games being routed to game console systems. Will the PC industry start concentrating in producing software applications instead of providing entertainment? Whatever happen to the emergence of technologies into a multimedia home? Stay tune... 8)


Dedicated Member
Sep 18, 2005
Ohhhh, man, just cant look anymore at the milking strategies of EA by releasing one expansion after another for the Sims universe...and they have big success with it!!!
Personally i wait for the SM/BD-Expansion for Sims ^^


Forum Sage
Oct 30, 2005
I used to be completely obsessed with the first Rollercoaster Tycoon games, often trying my best to make the most ultra-extreme coasters for my peeps to ride (or be forced to ride). Then the 3d version arrived and because of my ancient computer, it wouldn't play.

The problem with PC gaming is the complete lack in variety of its games and people's disinterest in spending more money just to play games with shinier graphics. With the success of the next generation consoles, we can only expect the projections for PC games 2006 to be even grimmer.