FIFA 17 fights its way to the top spot in the United Kingdom’s top selling games of 2016, continuing the FIFA franchise’s tradition of dominating UK sales charts.

Football may be king in the United Kingdom, but does that translate into the gaming world? While it’s not shocking to hear that FIFA 17 has done well in the United Kingdom, not everyone would have booked the title as a sure thing for the region’s coveted top selling retail game for 2016. The football title launched in late September, but evidently made up for lost time with some stellar sales months after its release. FIFA 17 is now officially the top selling UK retail game for 2016, surpassing the likes Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare and Battlefield 1 to claim the crown.

Even FIFA 16 fought its way to become the 13th best selling game for 2016 in the UK, and it was the only other field-based sports title to breach the top 50 – unless one is counting Rocket League, which is a little more out there when it comes to sports titles. The industry report also revealed that console hardware sales were down 27% as a whole, which may not have affected FIFA 17 as much as current-gen exclusive titles since it also released for the last generation of consoles simultaneously.

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It was a year dominated by sequels in the United Kingdom, with only 5 new intellectual properties breaking their way into the All-Format Top 50. These titles were Overwatch, The Division, Rocket League, No Man’s Sky, and Steep. The other 45 titles were all sequels or annualized titles of some sort, which really paints a picture of how tough it is for new intellectual properties to succeed in the retail environment.

It’s been a pretty dramatic year for the FIFA franchise, which introduced a cinematic storyline mode for the first time ever this year. The game’s support of LGBQT rights stirred up controversy from members of the Russian Parliament, a digital FIFA Coin scandal had the FBI bringing criminals to court, and last month gamers discovered a rubber-banding dramatization feature may have been included in the game despite a producer saying such a thing didn’t exist.

The future will also hold some extra drama for the footballing world as whole, since Brexit will have a large impact on how contracts for UK-based football players will be handled. FIFA 17 ignores the impending contractual headache entirely within its manager mode, so gamers looking for that added touch of realism will have to jump over to Football Manager 2017 to get it.

Only time will tell if FIFA 17 manages to play a game of keep-up when it comes to next year’s best selling games in the United Kingdom. If this year is any indication, we expect it’ll remain within the top 20 even after FIFA 18 makes its debut.

What do you think about FIFA 17 proving that football is king in the UK, Ranters?

FIFA 17 is available now on Xbox One, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, and PC.

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