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Far Cry 6, Guardians of the Galaxy and Ratchet & Clank sold better at physical retail than digital in the UK last year

But FIFA is now over 60% digital

The UK games industry is becoming increasingly digital, but single player games continue to sell strongly at physical retail.

Last year's best-selling new single player games Far Cry 6, Guardians of the Galaxy, Ratchet & Clank sold more in a box than as a download. The one exception was Resident Evil Village, which was slightly more popular as a digital game.

This is according to the latest GfK and GSD sales figures, as published in the Entertainment Retailer's Association's yearbook.

Nintendo games also continue to do well physically. Over 47% of all games sold at physical retail last year in the UK were on Nintendo Switch. However, Nintendo does not share digital download figures for its games.

The fastest growing digital product is FIFA. FIFA 22's digital share was 61% in 2021, whereas FIFA 21's digital share was 52% in 2020.

However, the Call of Duty franchise saw its digital share drop year-on-year. Call of Duty: Vanguard's digital share was 58%, whereas Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War's share was 69%.

The new release with the biggest digital sales share was EA's F1 2021, which had a 64% digital sales split.

Meanwhile, the ERA yearbook also revealed that more and more people are abandoning the High Street in favour of online retail. 72% of all physical games sold last year were sold via online stores. In 2020, that number was 70%.

Here is the 2021 UK sales charts with digital sales splits (ERA/GfK/GSD)

PosTitleUnitsDigital Share
1FIFA 222,338,77860.8%
2Call of Duty: Vanguard975,33958.3%
3Grand Theft Auto 5967,24276.9%
4FIFA 21602,22462.3%
5Mario Kart 8: Deluxe*599,8810%
6Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War549,49074.3%
7Spider-Man: Miles Morales505,80330.6%
8Animal Crossing: New Horizons*457,4070%
10Red Dead Redemption 2395,66978.2%
11F1 2021371,47064.1%
12Far Cry 6371,02044.7%
13Assassin's Creed Valhalla358,37948.1%
14Resident Evil Village331,25254.8%
15Super Mario 3D World + Bower's Fury*321,0100%
16Battlefield 2042297,46258.6%
17Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Siege236,83496.3%
18Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart225,47718.4%
19Pokémon Brilliant Diamond*210,5070%
20Guardians of the Galaxy192,57627.4%

*Digital Data Unavailable

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