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NPD: Industry Sales Up 6% As PS3 Software Shines With  God Of War III
NPD: Industry Sales Up 6% As PS3 Software Shines With God Of War III
April 15, 2010 | By Chris Remo

April 15, 2010 | By Chris Remo
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    29 comments
More: Console/PC



In contrast to last month, the video game industry saw year-over-year March growth in the U.S. retail console space, with revenues up 6 percent to $1.52 billion -- and PlayStation 3 had a rare month of software dominance.

According to tracking firm NPD Group, hardware sales were down 4 percent year over year to $440.5 million, as hardware prices declined 16 percent overall since last March. Software sales, however, grew 10 percent to $875.3 million and accessory sales were up 11 percent to $206.8 million.

NPD analyst Anita Frazier says this is the first non-holiday year-on-year increase for the industry since February 2009, and the third best non-holiday month ever -- welcome news after a year laced with eroded consumer confidence.

Software

Sony took top software honors this month, with PlayStation 3 occupying four slots on the top ten, and generating 40 percent of the top ten games' revenue.

In fact, Sony Santa Monica's God of War III was the single-best selling SKU of the month with 1.10 million units, although the combined sales of Pokemon SoulSilver and HeartGold outnumber it with 1.781 million units.

On the multiplatform side, the combined Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 sales of Square Enix's Final Fantasy XIII reach 1.322 million units, followed by DICE's Battlefield: Bad Company 2 on the same platform with 1.277 million units.

The platform spread of those two titles is notable: Final Fantasy XIII sold better on PS3, while Bad Company 2 sold better on Xbox 360. The PS3 sales of the former were very close to the Xbox 360 sales of the latter, and vice versa.

Frazier also notes that Infinity Ward's Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, which did not break the top ten this month but continues to sell, has become the second-best-selling game of all time, after Nintendo's Wii Play.

The top ten console retail software titles for March 2010 are as follows:

1. God of War III (Sony Santa Monica/SCEA, PS3), 1.10 million
2. Pokemon SoulSilver (Game Freak/Nintendo, NDS), 1.02 million
3. Final Fantasy XIII (Square Enix, PS3), 828,200
4. Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (DICE/Electronic Arts, Xbox 360), 825,500
5. Pokemon HeartGold (Game Freak/Nintendo, NDS), 761,200
6. Final Fantasy XIII (Square Enix, Xbox 360), 493,900
7. New Super Mario Bros. Wii (Nintendo, Wii), 457,400
8. Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (DICE/Electronic Arts, PS3), 451,200
9. Wii Fit Plus w/ Balance Board (Nintendo, Wii), 429,600
10. MLB 10: The Show (Sony San Diego/SCEA, PS3), 349,200

Hardware

As it was last month, Nintendo DS was the big winner on the hardware side, moving in excess of 700,000 units with the help of the new DSi XL model -- the first time in nine months the platform has met achieved those total sales.

And although PlayStation 3 came in below its competitors, it continues to outperform its past self, with Frazier pointing out that this is the system's eighth straight month of year-on-year sales gains, an achievement compounded by its software success.

Retail console unit sales for March 2010 are as follows:

1. Nintendo DS: 700,800
2. Wii: 557,500
3. Xbox 360: 338,400
4. PlayStation 3: 313,900
5. PSP: 119,900
6. PlayStation 2: 118,300


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Comments


Leon T
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Looks like Pachter was wrong about the death of Wii Fit. No surprise there since he always ignores what Nintendo says. Good software and hardware numbers all around with the exception of PSP.



The Wii was not in full supply in March so I wonder if hardware numbers will be higher for April.

Ken Masters
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Yup. That is exactly what I was trying to point out in Matt's 'Wii Software Decline' article, Leon. Listening to Pachter will only cause one to look foolish. (To Matt's credit, he did edit the article):



http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/27665/Analysis_Examining_Decli
ning_Wii_Software_Revenue_In_2010.php



Wii Fit Plus, right back in the top 10. Going from under 190k to 430k is overwhelmingly strong evidence of a shortage.

Kevin Jones
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Hardware:

Year on Year March (% Increase/Decrease)



PS3

2009 218K --> 2010 313.9K (+30.5%)



360

2009 330K --> 2010 338.4K (+2.3%)



Wii

2009 601K --> 2010 557.5K (-7.3%)





Year on Year - Year to Date (Jan-March) (% Increase/Decrease)



PS3

2009 697.2K --> 2010 950.9K (+36.4%)



360

2009 1,030K --> 2010 1,093.2K (+6.1%)



Wii

2009 2,033.2K --> 2010 1,421.2K ( -30.1%)



Console Software top 10 by platform (units)

PS3 - 2,728,600

360 - 1,319,400

Wii - 887,000



In addition, MW2 is now the second highest selling game in NPD history, only outsold by Wii Play.



Attachment rates:

Attachment rate for FFXIII

6.86% on PS3 vs. 2.50% on 360.



Attachment rate for BFBC2

3.74% on PS3 versus 4.19% on 360.



FF XIII split 63:37 in favour of the PS3 (excluding bundles for the 360)

BFBC 2 split 65:35 in favour of the 360

The are almost diametrically opposite. The 360 is the home of shooters, while FFXIII is much stronger on the PS3.



Across all platforms top selling games, March:

POKEMON combined - 1.78M

FFXIII - 1.32M

BFBC2 - 1.28M (excluding PC sales

GOWIII - 1.10M



Also, Final Fantasy XIII launch sales are the best launch ever for the FF franchise in the US.

The next closest was Final Fantasy XII, which was a PS2 exclusive. FF XII sold 896K units on the PS2 when it was launched in Nov '06. FFXIII sales in its first month is 48 percent greater than that of FFXII.

John Gordon
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It's interesting that the PS3 sold so much software, and yet they still came in last place on hardware. Either there is a severe PS3 shortage, or PS3 sales have a very grim future.

Kevin Jones
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@ John Gordon, the PS3 will outsell the 360 next month. The PS3 shortages seem to be largely over.

Dv8thwonder GunplayNotoy
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"the PS3 will outsell the 360 next month. The PS3 shortages seem to be largely over."



Kevin Jones said it so it must be true. /s

David Banner
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I guess Kevin Jones must be looking at Europe,Japan and other territories sales to come to that conclusion. I guess he thinks the USA is not the world.

gstarr W
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It's funny how Kevin believes in PS3 shortages, but Wii shortages are just a hoax by Nintendo. Perhaps he should add that Wii shortages seem to be abating so the Wii will continue to outsell all other systems (except the DS) for the rest of the year, too. Of course Nintendo will still be down versus last year because no one could else could ever sell as many units as Nintendo did last year... unless you are counting Nintendo, the year before that....

Kevin Jones
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@ David Banner

" I guess Kevin Jones must be looking at Europe,Japan and other territories sales to come to that conclusion. I guess he thinks the USA is not the world."



This is a US NPD thread. Ergo, sales figures refer to US NPD, not Japan or Europe, unless otherwise stated. So far this year, the 360 has outsold the PS3 in the US NPD by 142K. You can bellow about Japan sales in the Japanese Media Create threads as much as you want.

But hey, feel free to grumble to yourself in the meanwhile.

Kevin Jones
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@ gstarr -



:"It's funny how Kevin believes in PS3 shortages, but Wii shortages are just a hoax by Nintendo. Perhaps he should add that Wii shortages seem to be abating "



I suppose it never occured to you that the Wii shortages ended as long ago as the start of March?

And that today, you can get the Wii in any shop you care visit(at least here in New York), and even if you can't the Wii in your own little village, the Wii has been in full supply online at both Amazon and Gamestop for weeks, so can just order it online?

http://www.gamestop.com/Catalog/ProductDetails.aspx?product_id=63
944

http://www.amazon.com/Wii-Nintendo/dp/B0009VXBAQ/ref=pd_ts_vg_5?i
e=UTF8&s=videogames

http://www.gamestop.com/Catalog/ProductDetails.aspx?product_id=63
944

Kevin Jones
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@ Dv8thwonder GunplayNotoy :"Kevin Jones said it so it must be true. /s"



Naaaah.

More like the Wiitards think it ain't so, so of course, it simply cannot be so.

The Great Nintendo god has spoken!

Leon T
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The Wii was not actually in full stock until the second week of March for those same sites that you are linking to.



It is pretty clear that supply was low until last month. I would not be surprised if both Wii and Wii Fit sell more this month since they will be in supply for a full month.

Kevin Jones
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@ Leon Terry :"The Wii was not actually in full stock until the second week of March for those same sites that you are linking to"



No. I check Amazon and Gamestop(both online and brick and mortar) most days. The Wii was in full supply first week of March.





"It is pretty clear that supply was low until last month"



Nope.



" I would not be surprised if both Wii and Wii Fit sell more this month since they will be in supply for a full month"



Wii Fit Plus(software only) has never been in short supply. As a matter of fact, it's been discounted at Amazon by 14% for months. Only the Balance Board bundle used to be in short supply, and even that has been available at Amazon for some time now.

http://www.amazon.com/Wii-Fit-Plus-Nintendo/dp/B002BS47JE/ref=pd_
ts_vg_42?ie=UTF8&s=videogames

http://www.amazon.com/Wii-Fit-Plus-Balance-Board-Nintendo/dp/B002
BSA3EM/ref=pd_ts_vg_1?ie=UTF8&s=videogames

Kevin Butler
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Awesome!

Slowly but surely steady for the PS3 Fortress.



And by the way, no thanks to massive import-to-mod & software piracy. PS3 can do without them.

John Giordano
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Obviously the Wii's supply issue has been resolved. It went up 40% from last month without any major releases. It has certainly been supply constrained since January. That's really amazing considering the huge stockpile there was before the holidays.



PS3 also has it's supply issues which are apparent this month. Even with God of War, Final Fantasy, and Bad Company, it went down from last month by 13%.

John Giordano
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What's really interesting is how the PS2 is up over last year and last month. How is a ten year old system still selling like this? What a beast!

Leon T
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@ Kevin



We discussed the supply issue last month and it was not in full supply the entire month. I was traveling last month and I checked a couple stores in Tampa, GA, and MD. I believe both of us only have anecdotal evidence , because I don't remember seeing reports about the supply issue being resolved. What you can d is go the discussions on Amazon and see that it was in stock March 3rd and out of stock again by March 5th. The means that it was not in full supply, unless you believe that amazon received huge supply and it sold out in a couple days. The supply was not steady until the second week by most accounts.



Also it has been clear for some time that customers have been buying the Wii Fit Plus bundle. The fact that the game made the top ten when the bundle has a healthy stock again (since last month) should prove this. You can once again check the discussions on Amazon. Seems that customers care more about the balance board than the game.

Mike Caudle
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Love the PS3. And happy to see the PS2 live that long. Wonder how long the PS3 will live....

Kez Keenan
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Kevin used the term wiitard. Why would anyone listen to anything he has to say.

Fiore Iantosca
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"FF XIII split 63:37 in favour of the PS3 (excluding bundles for the 360)

BFBC 2 split 65:35 in favour of the 360

The are almost diametrically opposite. The 360 is the home of shooters, while FFXIII is much stronger on the PS3."



What a stupid statement, I'm sorry.



If you look at past games, regardless of them being"shooters", the 360 counterpart has ALWAYS sold more than the PS3 version



Final Fantasy is a special category since most people believe it "exclusive" to Sony, which clearly it is not. The FF 360 sales numbers are VERY good. It proves western players WANT JRPGs.



If anything these numbers STILL reiterate, when a non-exclusive game is released it most likely sells HIGHER on the 360, almost always.

Anthony Charles
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woah. i meant to go to a gamasutra news article, but somehow found myself on the IGN message boards.

Charles Forbin
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Wiitard? Is that what you wear while using a ballet dancing application for the Wii Fit? :)

Adam Flutie
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Interesting NPD numbers? maybe. I did like the fact Kevin pointed out the stats he gave. Though I don't agree with any of the predictions most would make from said numbers. For example:



Year Numbers:

Wii

2009 601K --> 2010 557.5K (-7.3%)



Year to Date Numbers:

Wii

2009 2,033.2K --> 2010 1,421.2K ( -30.1%)



Oh noes! the sky is falling!



NPD hardware:

1. Nintendo DS: 700,800

2. Wii: 557,500

3. Xbox 360: 338,400

4. PlayStation 3: 313,900

5. PSP: 119,900

6. PlayStation 2: 118,300



Oh, even with a 30% drop it is outselling the other big consoles by almost double? The same thing goes with the PS3 % increases. Great those are the numbers, what does it actually mean though?



The interesting thing about stats is you can blend the number to confuse and 'prove a point' to just about anyone that doesn't have access to all the same numbers, thus preventing them from bending them how they want to make them look.

Ken Masters
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I'm really beginning to suspect that the PS3 isn't really having any shortages. I really am. I can't point to any data to back this up but it's a thought that's been running through my head lately. It just doesn't make sense for them to be having shortages for THIS LONG.



Also, I believe next month coule possibly see Wii up YoY finally. Either April or May NPD will see the beginning of Wii up YoY for what I'm thinking may be the rest of the year (save for December).

Kevin Jones
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@ Fiorentino I :"If you look at past games, regardless of them being"shooters", the 360 counterpart has ALWAYS sold more than the PS3 version"



Not quite.

Batman Asylum for example, sold about the same on the PS3 and the 360 (despite the 360 having a far bigger install base), because of the exclusive DLC for the PS3 version. There have been quite a few games where the gap between the PS3 and the 360 have not been that great.

When it comes to multiplat shooters however, the 360 usually usually clobbers the PS3 in sales by healthy margins. Look at MW2 sales in November for example.

November MW2 sales:



1. 360 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 - 4.20 million

2. PS3 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 - 1.87 million



The 360 version outsold the PS3 version by a ratio of 2.5: 1, despite the fact that the 360 install base is only approx 1.6 times as big as that of the PS3. So the 360 is punching way above it's weight in shooters. I'd say XBOX Live and the Halo franchise probably have something to do with it.



:"The FF 360 sales numbers are VERY good. It proves western players WANT JRPGs. "



I would agree with that. I never said otherwise.





"If anything these numbers STILL reiterate, when a non-exclusive game is released it most likely sells HIGHER on the 360, almost always"



These numbers prove that Squeenix was smart in making FFXII multiplatform, because this is the best first month sales ever for the FF series in America, outselling the second best first month sales of the series(FFXII, PS2, November 2006), by a massive 48%. It essentially makes it much more likely that the next version of FF will be multiplatform as well.

Kevin Jones
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@ Ken Masters

:" I'm really beginning to suspect that the PS3 isn't really having any shortages. I really am. "



Your "suspicion" would go contrary to the evidence in the ground during the months of Jan, Feb and March.



"I can't point to any data to back this up but it's a thought that's been running through my head lately."



Ok then. That should end all arguments about the matter then. That funny feeling in the head thing.



" It just doesn't make sense for them to be having shortages for THIS LONG "



The Wii had shortages for all 2007 and 2008 (much, much longer than the PS3 shortages right now). I don't recall you whinning about that.



"Also, I believe next month coule possibly see Wii up YoY finally"



Possible. Because Wii sales in April 2009, were not that high.

David Banner
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@ Kevin Jones

It is funny how we look at the little instead of the whole ...you totally did not get my statement.

Achilles de Flandres
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I'm suprised that Just Dance is no longer in the top 10. quite an unexpected, and sudden drop off. wasn't in the top 4 for like the past 5 months, which continued to baffle everyone? Now... zilch.

John Giordano
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@archillies



Just dance and Wii Sports Resort are still doing great but have been pushed out of top ten due to all the new releases.


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