With all of the great games that have been released within the past four months, the video game industry appeared to be on a roll. So in a bit of a surprise, NPD’s report for April 2010 showed a major decline from the previous month. For example, the Nintendo DS, which has been a consistent heavy hitter, dropped from 700,800 units in March to 441,000 in April. The other consoles had similar drop-offs and NPD reported that April 2010’s numbers showed an 11 percent industry drop-off from 2009, which is the “worst year-over-year decline…since July ’09, and the fourth largest year-over-year percentage decline ever.”

For those interested in the “console war,” the Wii was once again triumphant with the Xbox 360 taking a distant second place. The PS3 was only 4,000 units behind the Xbox 360, so the race was tight for the hardcore title. Unfortunately, NPD chose to discontinue its tracking of the¬†PlayStation 2, so we can only guess how ol’ reliable performed.

On the software side, Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Conviction debuted to respectable, if not overwhelming, numbers. God of War III, which sold approximately 1.1 million copies during last month, only sold 180,000 copies in April. As for the remaining top ten, the numbers were far from impressive and mainly consisted of holdovers from the following month.¬†However, with Red Dead Redemption, Alan Wake, and numerous other highly-anticipated titles arriving this month, May 2010 may jumpstart the industry on the way to E3.

For the full list and numbers, see below:

Top 10 Games Sold at Retail, April 2010
1. Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Conviction (Xbox 360) : 486,000
2. Pokemon SoulSilver (DS): 243,000
3. New Super Mario Bros. Wii (Wii) – 200,000
4. Pokemon HeartGold (DS) 193,000
5. God of War III (PS3): 180,000
6. Wii Sports Resort w/Wii Motion Plus (Wii): 179,000
7. Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (360): 166,000
8. Wii Fit Plus (Wii): unknown
9. Just Dance (Wii): 144,000
10. Super Street Fighter IV (PS3): 143,000

Top Retail Hardware Sales, April 2010
1. Nintendo DS: 441,000
2. Nintendo Wii: 277,000
3. Xbox 360: 185,000
4. PlayStation 3: 181,000
5. PSP: 66,000

Source: Kotaku