NCsoft's new MMORPG came Stateside in September, and came out as the top PC game based on retail sales in the U.S., according to NPD, ahead of Electronic Arts' The Sims 3, Atari's Champions Online, and Blizzard's World of Warcraft.
Aion is NCsoft's biggest MMORPG launch since November 2007's Richard Garriott's Tabula Rasa, a game that NCsoft's South Korean headquarters essentially disowned earlier this year when NCsoft CFO Jaeho Lee said he wants to "erase that memory." Tabula Rasa shut down in February this year.
Aion was also a strong performer in recent weeks on digital download stores including Steam and Direct2Drive, with pre-orders for the game, released September 22, topping charts before and after the title's release. NPD's monthly charts do not include digital downloads -- only physical retail.
In August, prior to Aion's release, CFO Lee said, "I believe the performance of Aion in the US and European markets will be very successful. ... We are guessing that Aion will be -- could be -- the second [most] successful MMO in the US market next to World of Warcraft."
Aion was able to dethrone last month's number one, EA's The Sims 3. But The Sims series had other games in the top 20 list, with expansion packs including The Sims 2 Double Deluxe and The Sims 2 University Life Collection making the chart.
Another new MMORPG garnering a lot of press is Atari and Cryptic Studios' superhero-themed game, Champions Online, which came in third this month. Other notable debuts in the top 20 were Batman: Arkham Asylum, Zuma's Revenge, and Grand Theft Auto IV.
Below are NPD's results for U.S. PC retail sales during the September:
The Sims 3
World Of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Expansion Pack