Stores pulled in a billion dollars less than they did last year. Hardware and accessories were hit the worst.
The final months of the year are traditionally big ones for the game industry, with billions of dollars being thrown around on systems, controllers, games and more. The last month of 2011 didn't do quite so well.
Game retailers sold $3.99 billion worth of gaming goods in December of 2011. It's a lot of course, but it's a major step down from the $5.07 billion they sold in December of 2010. Sales were down across the board, but it was hardware that really suffered.
Console sales went down 28% last month while accessories took a similar 27% dive. There's only one new system on the market in the US though, and it makes sense that five year old consoles won't sell as well as they did at launch. Games did better, only dropping off 14%, but that's still a tremendous loss.