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Germans loved games about soccer, wizards, and demons the most in 2023

Though data on some big sellers is missing
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We’re in a brand-new year, but that doesn’t mean we’ve forgotten all about 2023 already – in fact, we’re getting lots of interesting statistics about the past dozen months these days that are fun to look at. Having written about games for different audiences and regions over the years, it’s been fun to observe the differences in taste between gamers in some areas. They’re often subtle and not too obvious – we’re all living on the internet, after all, sharing one culture in a sense. They do still exist, though.

Take the list of best-selling games in 2023 for Germany, for example. In a way, we’re conforming to and going against our stereotypes. You won’t find any simulator games on the list, which may be surprising to read. Instead of work, another national pastime takes the spotlight: soccer.

EA FC 24 Jamal Musiala.

Soccer, naturally, topped the charts in Germany.

EA Sports FC 24 was the top-seller among new releases in Germany last year, according to the official tally by the German Games Industry Association. This list takes into account physical and digital sales across PC and consoles, though there are some notable exemptions: Digital sales from the Nintendo eShop are not considered, as there’s no data on them, and some publishers don’t participate in data sharing, which is why Baldur’s Gate 3 and Alan Wake 2, two of the most important releases of the year, are missing from the list.

One point of interest Germans shared with the rest of the world in 2023 was, of course, wizardry. A good amount of the 22 million Hogwarts Legacy sales came from Germany, where the game ended up in second place on the charts. Activision Blizzard is bringing up ranks three and four – but you may be surprised to learn that Diablo 4 beat Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 to the podium. Germans love Call of Duty, but it’s traditionally also been a bastion for Blizzard thanks to the popularity of PC gaming here.

Nintendo was able to grab the next two positions with The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom and Super Mario Bros. Wonder, which are both missing their digital sales, so likely ranked higher. Still, it’s a top five and six finish for the Japanese developer on physical sales alone.

A trio of blockbuster releases follows the Nintendo duo with Star Wars Jedi: Survivor, Assassin’s Creed Mirage, and Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 in that order.

What else do Germans love? Oh, yes: cars. Fast ones, especially. F1 23 completes the top ten of 2023, showing that the racing series and its games still enjoy huge popularity here despite us not sniffing any championship air these days.

Outside of the top ten we’re looking at a strong year for remakes with Resident Evil 4 and Dead Space on ranks eleven and twelve. Starfield finally shows up at 13, so it’s clearly not been as big a seller as Bethesda hoped, though it still beat Final Fantasy 16 by one rank.

The Crew Motorfest making the top 20 is probably another expression of our love for cars, while both NBA 2K24 and WWE 2K23 making it in is a huge surprise to me – both are very American things, but the growing popularity of the respective sports must help the games out as well.

Rounding out the list is Anno 1800: Console Edition, which should warm the heart of strategy game fans everywhere. Anno is a very beloved, homegrown series, so it’s nice to still see it go strong and find a new fanbase on consoles.