Video game software sales rebounded in November, a crucial month for the industry as gift buying takes off in the weeks leading up to the holidays.
Sales of games sold as discs jumped 15% to $1.67 billion last month compared with a year earlier, the most that's been rung up for a November sales period, according to a report from market research firm NPD Group Inc.
"Content sales grew substantially thanks to a great slate of new titles," said Anita Frazier, NPD's game analyst.
Hard-core games dominated the bestseller list as a bumper crop of hotly anticipated shooter, role-playing and adventure titles hit the market last month, including Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 from Activision Blizzard Inc., Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and Saints Row: The Third from THQ Inc.
Analysts were heartened by the uptick in game sales, which had limped along since 2009, when the economic downturn caused consumers to ratchet down spending.