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Video-Game Sales Soar Again in May

U.S. retail sales of video games, consoles and game accessories hit $1.12 billion in May, a 37 percent rise over the same month last year, driven by the chart-topping "Grand Theft Auto" video game, market researcher NPD Group reported Thursday.

Nintendo Co.'s Wii console is still the top-selling hardware unit, with 675,100 units sold in May. Nintendo's DS handheld player took second with 452,600 units sold.

Those units have captured the top two spot's for four consecutive months.

Sony Corp.'s PlayStation 3 and Microsoft Corp.'s Xbox 360 trailed with 208,700 and 186,600 units sold, respectively.

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Hardware sales rose 34 percent to $428.6 million, while software sales rose 41 percent to $536.9 million, compared to the same month last year, NPD reported.

Take-Two Interactive Corp's "Grand Theft Auto IV," released in April, continues to be the No. 1 selling video game, selling 871,300 units in May.

NPD analyst Anita Frazier said the success of "Grand Theft Auto IV" is not translating into big hardware sales for either the PlayStation3 or the Xbox 360 games consoles, "but there may yet be a lift in June due to gift-giving for Father's Day and graduations."

Sales year-to-date come to $6.6 billion and the industry is on pace to bring in revenue between $21 billion and $23 billion for 2008, Frazier said.