"It's as if consumers woke up and decided to start gaming again," said Anita Frazier, an NPD analyst for the market research group that measures nearly two-thirds of video game retail sales in the United States and makes projections on the remainder of the market.
"Normally, we expect good things in June with graduation and Father's Day gifts helping to spur retail sales, but this performance goes beyond typical lift from those occasions," said Frazier, who noted that all categories posted gains for the month.
Game sales increased 15 percent to $444.4 million, while hardware sales grew to $297.8 million from $200.7 a year earlier.
THQ's "Cars" video game sold around 646,000 units in its first month at retail, surpassing the debut performances of both "Finding Nemo" and "The Incredibles" -- which were also popular games based on films from Walt Disney Co.'sPixar Animation Studios.
Microsoft's Xbox 360 sold 277,000 units. The Xbox 360 has been difficult to find in stores until recently because of production related shortages following its release in November.
Nintendo's (7974.OS) DS and DS Lite were the top-selling portable system for the month.
Nintendo said combined sales of those two devices totaled just under 600,000 in June, a figure very close to NPD's estimate.