Game and puzzle sales grew 23% in 2021 compared to 2019, based on data collected at point-of-sale from chains, online retailers, and other retail outlets by The NPD Group, the company announced.  The growth in the games and puzzles supercategory was reflective of overall growth for toys (including games), which hit sales of $28.6 billion in NPD-tracked retailers in 2021, up 13% from $15.4 billion in 2020.

This is the second big year for the overall toy category, which was up 16% last year (see "NPD Releases Annual Pre-Toy Fair Report").

Ten of NPD’s supercategories had growth in 2021, and all of them had positive growth vs. 2019.  The 23% two-year compound annual growth rate for games and puzzles was second only to "explorative and other toys," which grew 24%.

Top properties in the toy business in 2021 were Pokemon, Barbie, Star Wars, L.O.L. Surprise, Fisher-Price, Marvel Universe, Hot Wheels, Nerf, LEGO Star Wars, and Little Tikes.