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EA's 'Madden' Game Scores Big

It sells almost 2 million copies in less than a month.

Video-games publisher

Electronic Arts'

(ERTS)

sports blockbuster,

Madden NFL 08

, stormed the August charts for game sales, with more than 1.8 million copies of the title sold in less than a month since its release.

EA sold 896,600 copies of

Madden

for

Microsoft's

(MSFT) - Get Report

Xbox 360, 643,600 copies for

Sony's

(SNE) - Get Report

older PlayStation 2 console and 336,200 copies for the PlayStation 3, according to data from research firm NPD Group.

Madden

, which was released on Aug. 14, bagged the top two spots on NPD's list of best-selling video games for the month.

Competitor

Take-Two Interactive

(TTWO) - Get Report

also found good news in the August sales data. The company's

sleeper hit,

BioShock

, released for the Xbox 360, ranked third on the charts with 490,900 copies sold in just about two weeks since launch. Take-Two has

already said it has shipped 1.5 million

BioShock

TST Recommends

games into retail stores.

Nintendo's

games,

Wii Play

,

Metroid Prime 3: Corruption

, and

Mario Strikers Charged

ranked fifth, sixth and seventh on the charts with sales of 256,800, 218,100 and 147,400 copies respectively.

Activision's

(ATVI) - Get Report

Guitar Hero 2

for the PS2 (145,400 copies) and

Guitar Hero Encore: Rock the 80s

game (127,100 copies) bagged the eighth and 10th spots on the charts.

On the hardware side, Sony's PlayStation 3 console continued its gains.

While still lagging behind rivals, the PS3 video game console sold 130,600 units to reach an installed base of 1.75 million in the U.S.

PS3 sales have increased 61% since the company announced a $100 price cut in July for the 60-gigabyte model, bringing down its cost to $499, said Sony. The company sold 159,000 PS3s

in July.

Still, the Wii and Xbox 360 console have little to fear just yet. Nintendo sold 403,600 Wiis last month, giving the company an installed base of 4 million devices. Microsoft sold 276,700 Xbox 360s in August, reaching a base of 6.3 million devices.

Sony's older PlayStation 2 console continued to sell well. Gamers bought 202,000 PS2s during the month, helping the system reach an installed base of 39.1 million users.

Overall video-game industry sales, including hardware, software and accessories, grew 46.4%, or $993 million, in August to $8.02 billion.

Video-game hardware sales in the month rose 94.1% to $384 million from $198 million in August 2006.

Consoles sales drove much of the growth, with console hardware up nearly 152.1% to $302 million.

Sony's sold 151,200 PlayStation Portables, its handheld gaming device, and Nintendo's version, the DS, sold 383,300 devices.

Sales of games software, including games for console and handheld devices, were up 22.5% during the month to $488 million, while sales of game accessories rose 47.1% to $121 million.