Despite the 25 percent difference, however, momentum is building towards the holiday buying season, according to NPD Group analyst Liam Callahan: "While we saw declines in hardware unit sales across all platforms year-over-year, when looking at average sales per week versus September, several consoles realized higher sales: The 360, PS3, NDS and 3DS. This is a sign of increasing momentum as we move into the holiday season."
Hardware sales themselves accounted for $187.3 million of October's overall figure, a 37 percent decrease over October 2011's $295.9 million. As usual, the Xbox 360 was the top-selling hardware platform and claimed more than 40 percent of the market, according to Major Nelson.
Accessories continue to be the only field of growth in the physical channel, pulling down a five percent increase in October 2012 over October 2011 ($135.6 million and $129.6, respectively). As has been the case in months past, Skylanders toys and digital currency giftcards are primarily responsible for this segment's prosperity.
Portable software sales were up 37 percent in comparison with last October thanks to the release of Pokémon Black & White 2, though the rest of the segment failed to best the curve and was down overall by 25 percent. October 2011's software figure of $576.8 million was bolstered by the release of both Battlefield 3 and Batman: Arkham City; since comparable heavy-hitters were missing from this October's release schedule, software sales total at $432.6 million.
October's top 10 best-selling games are lead by NBA 2K13, which "outsold last year's 2K12 by over 60 percent in both dollars and units," according to Callahan. As per usual, the full list can be found after the break.