Forums - Sales Discussion - UK, Physical still dominant despite digital shift


The vast majority of console game sales still come from physical stores, new data reveals.

MCV has combined UKIE/GfK Chart-Track data with new figures from SuperData in an effort to show the split between the digital and physical market. And it shows that around 80 per cent of game sales are coming from the boxed market. 

However, this is not an exact science. Both data sources utilise different methodologies and they also look over slightly different periods.

Chart-Track’s March chart, for instance, included sales up to March 26th, which means Bloodborne was only on sale for two days when the physical numbers were counted. This may explain why Bloodborne’s digital sales (which include all sales up until March 31st) are proportionally so high.

But it still provides an insight into the scale of the move between digital and physical. Big triple-A titles such as Battlefield Hardline are primarily bought in boxes, while the split is more even for digital-first titles, such as Minecraft (although it’s interesting to see how strong physical sales are for the hit kids IP).

This chart is possible thanks to SuperData’s UK digital console chart, which utilises insight provided from publishers and payment firms.

“SuperData’s digital console chart for the UK is currently still in beta but we expect to have the charts on equal level with the traditional retail rankings by Q4 2015,” said SuperData CEO Joost van Dreunen. “Our UK digital console rankings are compiled based on data we collect from payment service providers and participating developers. On a monthly basis, approximately 5.1 million UK gamers spend money on digital games across all platforms and devices.”

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It's data like this that show all digital consoles aren't coming any time soon, if ever.

Bet Shiken that COD would outsell Battlefield in 2018.


The U.S. is much the same. In GameStop's Q1 report they cited DFC Intelligence data that suggested that of "AAA"/retail-release titles sold in 2014, 88% was physical, 5% was paid full downloads, and the rest was bundled digital games. To put that in pie chart form:

Yeah. The future of consoles is most definitely not digital-only. The demand for physical is too high. It's effectively the opposite of the PC market, which was 92% digital at last count.

Even indie game start to get physical version

PS4 - over 100 millions let's say 120m
Xbox One - 70m
Wii U - 25m

Vita - 15m if it will not get Final Fantasy Kingdoms Heart and Monster Hunter 20m otherwise
3DS - 80m

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Every time I think of digital games I think of this scenario:

"Merry Christmas/happy birthday son, here's my credit card (or PSN/XBL gift card) now go buy that game you wanted."

...i just don't think it'd make such a good present that's for sure lol

Great! iam proud of you americans.

No go and push indie games physical more.


My youtube gaming page.

On consoles, this is expected. The price of digital vs physical is still heavily skewed in favour of physical games for most titles. Seriously, why would I pay £10 extra for the digital version when I can order it from Amazon and have it arrive the next day.

Complete opposite on PC... Steam sales!

Always good news.

Bloodborne 40% digital in march?! O.O

How muck did it sold in march in UK then?