It’s been a pretty amazing past ten years for video games, and we’ve seen some of the best developers leveraging improving hardware to their advantage, in order to release perhaps their best work yet.
However, which titles have been the most popular amongst the fans, and which will rise above the rest of the decade-long earners to become the best selling in the entire 10 year period?
Intrigued? Read on to see if you can guess the best selling video games of the decade.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – 30 Million Copies Sold
By far the most popular entry in the Elder Scrolls series and a cultural phenomenon at this point, referenced on an almost daily basis by at least one person in the gaming community, The Elder Scrolls V has seen releases in multiple different forms since its original launch on PS3, Xbox and PC on that memorable 11.11.11 date.
We’ve seen a remastered, updated version for the modern consoles with graphical upgrades, a Nintendo Switch version with motion control integration that you can take on the go, and even a fully-immersive VR version if you truly want to get a feel for what it’s like to start a bar fight in Whiterun.
Skyrim has been launched on that many platforms at this point that it’s almost become a running joke in and of itself. It seems to have worked a charm for game lead Todd Howard and the rest of the team over at Bethesda, however, as the game has amassed over 30 million copies sold.
I for one have purchased the game twice, and would happily do so again if there was a good enough reason. I’m sure Bethesda would love to find one for me.
Grand Theft Auto V – 115 Million Copies Sold
Rockstar Games aren’t here to mess around, and while their ginormous, open-world opuses spend a lot of time in the development oven, they release to pretty much repeated worldwide fanfare and praise.
The fifth installment in their world-famous Grand Theft Auto series, one that’s well broken the barriers that sometimes games were once pigeonholed into, V launched to critical acclaim, matching an in-depth, gritty story with a sandbox world that you could do what you pleased within.
GTAV’s online component is what’s sustained its popularity even further, however. The game’s consistent updates and digital content bolsters have kept its player base coming back for more for years on end, which alongside Red Dead Redemption 2 has subsequently fostered quite the healthy income stream for Rockstar to focus on their future projects.
Porting – An incredibly important process in video game development is porting, and optimising the title for other platforms that individual developers or development teams might not be familiar with.
Not only will this help to spread the word of a title and help to market it better, but having platform ubiquity will put the game in the hands of as many people as possible, driving up sales in the process.
A great example of a development company with experience in this field is Abstraction, as they have experience with over 50 games across 16 different platforms. You can visit their website to find out more, including insight into the development process for different platforms.
Minecraft – 180 Million Copies Sold
A game about building blocks with rather solid foundations, Minecraft is one of those once in a generation game that just snowballed in popularity. Across PC, consoles, and mobile devices, the game has sold over 180 million copies, and despite being an incredible game, it’d be hard to think in 2010 that this would be one of the largest titles of all time.
Recognizing the game’s evergreen appeal and genius gameplay design, Microsoft purchased Minecraft developer Mojang for $2.5 Billion part-way through the decade, in order to build Minecraft into a brand, not just expanding and building upon the original game but also bulking up surrounding media and releasing new games centered around the franchise, too.
The upcoming Minecraft Dungeons will make a dungeon-crawler out of the blocky series, and the already released Minecraft Earth looks to capitalize on the same mainstream success that Pokemon GO saw some years prior, getting players out and about and encouraging them to interact with each other through augmented reality in order to progress.
More than just a diamond in the rough, the core Minecraft experience will always have a place in the hearts of many gamers, and this larger expansion and growth for the future is nothing short of what the series deserves.