The latest figures from SuperData Research, a provider of market intelligence covering the global markets for everything that has to do with gaming, shows that the interactive entertainment business generated a massive $91 billion in revenues in 2016. What’s noteworthy here is that consumers spent a colossal $41 billion on mobile gaming, driven mainly by the runaway success of Pokémon GO and Clash Royale. It was closely followed by PC gaming that made $34 billion thanks to the continued success of League of Legends and the recently released Overwatch. One more key takeaway from their stats shows that virtual reality (VR) gaming, still in its infancy, was able to generate $2.7 billion in buyer spending.
Since the gaming industry continues to be so lucrative, we decided to run down the five best-selling video games of all time. The figures include both physical sales and downloads.
1. Tetris (1984) – 495 million copies sold
Sitting pretty at the apex of the list is Russian-born Tetris. This puzzle game was actually developed back in 1984, so it’s more accurate to say it was the first ever release from the old USSR to make its way to the USA. The popularity of the game is so huge that it can be played not only on gaming consoles, mobile phones, and PCs but also on other nontraditional devices such as business cards, calculators, and music players. Even BingoFind.com is reporting that Scientific Games Corporation released a Tetris-themed video slot game that can be found on casino floors across the US.
2. Minecraft (2009) – 122 million
There is a very good reason why Microsoft decided to splash out $2.5 billion back in 2015 to acquire Minecraft. Described by many as the biggest game of the 10’s, it has a huge following across all handheld and desktop gaming devices, iOS, Windows and Android operating systems and even Amazon Fire TV. In other words, it’s pretty much everywhere you can imagine. It has a cult following, predominantly a younger crowd, which made this acquisition a no-brainer for the Redmond-based tech giant.
3. Wii Sports (2006) – 82.78 million
A lot of people would argue that the only reason the Wii Sports game is so high up on the list is because it came bundled with almost every Wii gaming console ever sold. That might be true, but this title does hold the distinction of being the best-selling video game of all time on a single platform. You’d be hard pressed to find someone who hasn’t shed some sweat while playing sports using the iconic motion control system.
4. Grand Theft Auto V (2013) – 75 million
The fifth installment in the popular franchise has managed to outsell each of its predecessors generating billions in the process for Rockstar Games. Upon its release in September 2013, it tallied $800 million on the first day and over $1 billion in three days. To put it in perspective, it took Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 fifteen days to reach the $1 billion mark. Funny enough, according to a new report from Bloomberg, self-driving cars are using visual information from the game to train auto-piloting software.
5. Super Mario Bros. (1985) – 40+ million
Another nostalgic entry from the 80’s, Super Mario is by far one of the most well-known characters in video game history. Just like the Wii Sports game, this was also packaged with the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), that is why it cracks the top 5.
Due to the nature and the current trends of the industry, you shouldn’t expect to see any changes to the top five anytime soon. But it should be interesting to see how things stand in ten years from now.