Animal Crossing New Horizons
Image: Nintendo

We all know that video gaming is big business, but how big? Well, the UK video game market passed the £4 billion marker in 2020 – the first time it has ever happened (thanks, MCV).

Video gaming generated a massive £4.2 billion in revenue in the region last year, according to preliminary data compiled by the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA).

The ERA says that 'entertainment' revenues – including music and video – jumped by 16.8% to a hit record £9.05 billion. However, gaming was by far the most profitable sector – something which has been true since 2013, when revenue reached £2.3 billion.

In 2020, video game revenue jumped 14.5% year-on-year, but it was digital sales which saw the largest increase – hardly a shock when you consider that everyone has been indoors for most of the year. Digital sales – which includes mobile and streamed games as well as downloads on consoles like the Switch – increased to £3.6bn, a rise of by 16.3%. Sales of physical, packaged games rose 4.6%, to £598.5m.

FIFA 21 was the UK's most popular game last year in terms of units sold, while Animal Crossing: New Horizons came in at number six – although it's worth noting that position does not include digital sales of the game, so it's not an honest reflection on how well New Horizons has done in 2020. We'd imagine a lot of sales will have occurred digitally.

Best-selling Games 2020
Chart Position Title Total Unit Sales
1 FIFA 21 2,182,694
2 Call Of Duty: Black Ops Cold War 1,420,353
3 Grand Theft Auto V 1,127,222
4 FIFA 20 903,810
5 Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 897,350
6 Animal Crossing: New Horizons (digital sales not included) 810,462
7 Assassin’s Creed Valhalla 665,815
8 The Last Of Us Part II 539,247
9 NBA 2K20 481,507
10 Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege 436,957