Game Over? Why Video-Game-Console Sales Are Plummeting

Sales of consoles in the U.S. dropped 21% in 2012 to just over $4 billion, and figures from the manufacturers of the three top systems were lackluster over the crucial holiday season

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At a quick glance, it looks like it could be “game over” for the video-game-console business. Sales of consoles in the U.S. dropped 21% in 2012 to just over $4 billion, and figures from the manufacturers of the three top systems were lackluster over the crucial holiday season. 

When announcing its quarterly earnings last month, Microsoft said its Xbox-division revenue dropped 29%. At Sony, lower PlayStation 3 and PSP sales were responsible for a 15% drop in revenue for its video-game division. Nintendo’s next-gen console Wii U also failed to generate as much interest as originally predicted. Last month, the company said it had sold only about 3 million consoles and that it would sell a million more through March, a sharp drop from the 5.5 million it initially anticipated selling.

There’s less demand for the physical games these days too. According to research company NPD Group, game sales fell from a little over $11 billion in 2011 to less than $9 billion last year. Retailer GameStop says sales of new video games over the holiday season dropped by about 5%, and sales of used games dropped by 16%. “It’s tracking to be the worst quarter the company’s ever had in the used business,” Sean McGowan, an analyst with Needham & Co., told the Wall Street Journal.

Analysts blame a lot of the slump on timing. “It is a cyclical market,” says Lewis Ward, research manager of gaming at IDC. “The usual lifespan is 10 to 12 years for a console, and we are in a trough right now.”

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But the Wii U’s underwhelming sales illustrate that even the market for new consoles will be challenging, leaving the industry pinning its hopes on Sony and Microsoft. Sony is expected to unveil the next version of the PlayStation as early as this month, according to the Wall Street Journal, and start selling it some time later this year. Microsoft is also supposed to introduce its new Xbox this year, and analysts say the serious enthusiasts will pull out their wallets once the new consoles become available.

“The hardcore gamers will come back,” says Edward Woo, a senior research analyst at Ascendiant Capital Markets. Woo blames “console fatigue” for falling numbers.

There are other, more secular factors chipping away at the era of the video-game console as we know it today. For one, there’s the segment of players the industry calls “casual gamers.” If you want to know who they are, look around; they’re the people playing Angry Birds on their phones. And that’s the problem.

The original Wii got these people waving controllers in droves. Nintendo wasn’t able to repeat the magic with Wii U, largely because this fickle group of users has moved on to mobile games played on smart phones and tablets. This will put a serious dent in sales, particularly of portable-game players. “In terms of long-term outlook, the real difficulty is in handhelds because people gravitate towards tablets and mobile phones,” Woo says.

(MORE: The Death of Used Games Is a Rumor That Won’t Die)

Analytics company Flurry estimates that we spent more than $8 billion on mobile-game apps last year. “When it comes to app consumption on iOS and Android smart devices, consumers spend over 40% of all their time using games,” the company writes on its blog.

One of the appeals of mobile-app games is that developers often make “lite” versions available for free, and this penny-pinching extends to hardware. Consumers are still spending more cautiously than they were the last time hardwaremakers refreshed their console lineups. “The other major factor that’s been weighing on console sales is the macro downturn,” Ward says. “It’s pulled back consumer spending across the board.”

At around $350 for the high-end version of the Wii U, some people think the Nintendo priced the console too high, even though the company is said to be losing money on every unit it sells. “The price point is probably another factor I would point to that has limited uptake,” Ward says.

(MORE: All-TIME 100 Video Games)

This is a mistake TIME Techland points out Sony will need to avoid when it puts its new device on sale: “If Sony launches higher (and doesn’t include something like a free iPad), especially in a weak economy, it may find it’s looking for dance partners all over again.”

“As consumers look more and more for deals over the holidays while purchasing hardware, bundles which include software grew by 26%, while hardware selling alone with no games declined by 37%,” NPD analyst Liam Callahan says in a report accompanying the company’s data. “Consumers are becoming more savvy.”

Ward also blames a lack of good games, especially for the Wii U. “Some folks might wait until they see their favorite titles before they buy it — a lot of people are attracted to the consoles because of the games themselves,” he says. Nintendo has been slow to address this, and comments from company President Satoru Iwata at a recent investor event indicate that this is probably going to remain the status quo at least through the first half of 2013.

More generally, NPD finds that nearly half of game sales were of the top 10 most popular games, a 12% jump over last year. People still buy the blockbusters, Callahan says, “but middle-tier games as well as catalog titles are suffering.”

Most important, the industry is in the nascent stages of a digital revolution. NPD says sales of digital games grew 16% over the past two years. If you compare the gaming industry to the music industry, right now it’s in a pre-iTunes, pre-Pandora era. Discs are still the primary way people consume this media. Ward says there are a host of technical reasons why people aren’t downloading games or playing them on a cloud-based service yet, but industry observers say it’s just a matter of time. Woo says the upcoming generation of consoles could very well be the last ones with drives, and Ward points to Sony’s $380 million purchase of cloud-streaming provider Gaikai last year as a sign that the company will put more emphasis on game streaming in the future.

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When players can download or stream games easily and affordably, the video-game console could shrink further to essentially become a handful of chips inside a next-generation smart TV. “In the future, I think that could become a significant challenge to the entrenched incumbents,” Ward says. Consoles might not die out completely, but they could be transformed into something hardly recognizable to today’s gamers.

41 comments
HaroldOduardo
HaroldOduardo

you guys are missing the whole point, some have it on the tips of their tongues, some just make good arguments. 

Consoles vs. PC

1 - the major difference between them is that instead of buying the whole system, you can just upgrade or replace the bad part.

1.1 - some people are not as good with the thumbs handling a stick and rather more options to create the same movements, this also include the use of joysticks and hardware related to such. 

2 - online gaming is much of the industry now since most games coming out are far on par with the quality of consoles games allowing for players to "cheat" through the in game market buying different items, otherwise, don't spend a single coin, the game is after all, free to play unlike many console games with the similar aspects.

3 - now, one of the major collapses on the gaming industry in total, is the old fashioned "programers and companies dont listen to the buyers". true for the most parts, they promise something, we give them ideas to improve it and make it better, yet we get air and dead hopes back. why arent we looking exactly at this when talking about the gaming industry crashing millions? in the end, we gamers are never delivered what we bought or they promised us to present. 

4 - unlike consoles (correct me if i am wrong on this) many pc gamers enjoy the ability to modify files which improves the gaming experience and allows for a wider range of interactivity withing the same old game. besides, easier to cheat your way through instead of wasting meaningless hrs and days grinding your way through unlike on consoles (ps. i know some hacks can still be done on consoles, but sometimes its better to just cheatengine everything) .. *rolls eyes*

5 -  now this is a con against pc, but its not really much if you know what you are doing. unlike consoles, sure, pc gaming is less stable due to bugs on either the hardware, or softwares (both drivers and games). while downloading games is becoming much more of an annoyance in the gaming world, we are still wasting minutes instead of put disk in and play which brings the "missing files" from bad downloads, or even bugs on the game itself. this however does not mean the released product does not come without bugs, it is a software after all and bugs are bound to happen sooner or later, some leading to game crashes. 

6 - the biggest con against pc gaming? peer to peer game sharing. lets face it, how many times have we bought a game and it was never what we where all expecting? where did the magical colors in the rainbow and innovating new systems go? well, peer to peer is there because of that, many of us old gamers have gotten tired of wasting our own money into these kind of programs, we would like more frequent play before buying like free trials, 15 mins, 5, first mission, that will give us an idea of what kind of crap we are buying. (ps. excuse my french.... ps.ps. got nothing against french so dont judge me, just a saying)... anyways back into topic.... this costs companies tons of money and i agree, but are they really delivering what they promise?!!!?!??!?!?!?!!??!?!?!!!?!??? .... nope, didn't think so.... so, their plan is to capture you and force you into buying console games which are harder to share and sometimes making these games only available to consoles.

7 - want me to put the lid into this old controversy once and for all? how about companies stop mimicking everything in the market and for once start creating new games that are ACTUALLY NEW. first person shooters will always follow the "shooting" habit, the mission is to make it more enjoyable, updated,and fix things in the software PLAYERS are telling you to fix before you copy and paste everything from older versions, and PLEASE, make the newer games be able to handle better emotions into characters and not look like the previous versions. as for mmo's in general, how about doing some digging? same thing happens over and over from what i previously mentioned, instead of mixing system from 2, 3 games (which sometimes are good mixes if you actually use your head and listen to gamers) why not come up with something new? also, stop restricting gamers into a follow the path storyline and let us discover the world designers and programers came up with? some open gaming while storylining in a game would bring things to a whole new level, instead of following this road, how about letting players choose their own approach to the objective? 

and finally, before i forget, how about you companies stop trying to buy us with goodies? yeah, sure, exclusive give away for pre purchasing the games which are bound to suck your money out of your pocket and give nothing of pleasure back is a good way to go....  how about spending more time into the actual game instead of these goodies? id rather prefer a map of the game and a key chain in return if you promise a good game and actually deliver a good game worth of some praise and not a exclusive weapon or character that OMFG sucks along with the game, and let me guess, you spent half a year perfecting?


anyways, am tired of writing so ill be stopping it here, thing is, companies need to re-market their strategies onto what we as gamers ask otherwise, the system they are creating will bring their own crash. if i missed something, please feel free to add.

good luck, and happy gaming to you all.

kgbkgb1967
kgbkgb1967

"10 to 12 years for a console, and we are in a trough right now"

Yeah, tell me one console that lasted 10 years.  The original gameboy comes as close as any, but it is not a console system.  Even the original Nintendo didn't make it quite 10 years before the SNES came along.  

JasonThacker
JasonThacker

I love how this ignores one of, if not THE, biggest issue with declining console and game sales.


The repetitive, borderline rip-off nature, of console games.


How many times can a Publisher force a studio into remaking the same game, before people finally tire of paying for the same product every single year? EA is especially notorious for this - much to their own decline. See Medal of Honor and Dead Space for how this is going. Relaunching the same product year after year is insulting to customers. Especially given the price tag of these "new" games.


This is why I game on PC. I wanted a new PC anyway. I was also considering a gaming console. Total price tag for both: $800 at the time. So I made a financial decision and poured all of that into a nice gaming rig instead. For $950, delivered to my door, I got a high end gaming PC and never looked back. We have indie titles and lots of choice. Not to mention sales. The price of games on Steam compared to buying console titles in stores has saved me hundreds of dollars already, and added a good deal of variety to my gaming experience that gaming on a console would deny me.

CharleyAbrams
CharleyAbrams like.author.displayName 1 Like

The article misses in a lot of respects, Xbox and PlayStations are about to introduce new systems, why would anyone buy the old ones? Wii U probably did lose some casual gamers(good, might mean better titles). The article was correct in that it will pick up when the fans games are delivered. I have recently purchased a Wii U, I love it as a game system, mii verse allows for a friendly chat environment about the games, you can pause the game, take a screen shot, post it to Mii verse, and ask a questions about the games with other gamers. The game pad controls the TV, cable, volume, channel exe. My son loves it too. I could go on and on, it is a wonderful experience. That being said, I have also watched the system be trashed by Sony and Xbox fans for not being a graphic power house. It is disheartening to say the least. Wii U is roughly 19% more powerful than 7 year old systems, some of the game ports are better and some worst. This plus a sorry excuse for new game selections from the last couple of years of the Wii has left a bad taste in peoples mouth. Nintendo is teaming with other developers to offer more first party games, they are becoming more personal and open with their game announcements, the 3DS is the leader of the hand held systems, crushing the competition. I do not think it is over for them by a long shot, but if it was, they certainly do not represent the game industry as a whole. The game will never be over.

shikiryougi1
shikiryougi1

@CharleyAbramsWhy would anyone buy the old ones? Gee, I don't know maybe to play the old games? Since Microsoft and especially Sony don't think it's important to include BC and gamers are even more guilty since they don't do enough complaining about it and think it's not a big deal. 

 According to some gamers they can just buy a new or used one for cheap not acknowledging the fact that that system will one day crap out and Sony will eventually stop offering repair services for them. So when they do crap out they have to spend more money again buying another one.

CharleyAbrams
CharleyAbrams

@shikiryougi1 @CharleyAbrams Well my point was that it hurts sales of existing consoles if people know there are new ones on the way, leading to my argument that video gaming isn't game over man.

KGelner
KGelner

If Sony were really, really smart they would announce a new console that made use of Apple iPads as secondary controllers.  Then they can price the console reasonably and have a lot of ready-made customers.

Microsoft cannot do this because they sell the Surface...  and if they use the Surface in the same way how many people will buy an XBox + a Surface?  They just don't have the install base to do that.

nonamemcgee63
nonamemcgee63

@KGelner yeah cause everyone owns an IPAD............... i hate it when companies build their products around the sucess of another it's a horrible idea.

 I would much rather buy a product from the company similar to an ipad that they can control the cost of. Bringing the cost of the surface down because they would be selling them to 2 different markets. It would make more sense to me to do it that way. No one is going to want to buy an Ipad just to play on their PS4.......

styrgwillidar
styrgwillidar

Well my kids have an Xbox, Playstation 2 and 3, and a Wi. My son is the biggest gamer and has shifted over to gaming on PC along with most of his friends. They're all about the on-line gaming and downloadable content from Steam.  His goal is to build a dedicated gaming PC (currently games on a laptop with a Radeon 6770).  

So, I think a lot of this market drop is kids returning to PC based gaming.


nonamemcgee63
nonamemcgee63

@styrgwillidar As it should be, if your xbox goes bad you have to replace the whole thing. Atleast with computer gaming you can upgrade the parts or replace parts as needed. And IMO computers are more durable as well.

BenFranklin
BenFranklin

The rest of the economy is in the toilet as well.  Why should the gaming industry be any different?

With Obama doing everything he can to destroy jobs, especially entry level ones, there isn't any way for kids to earn the money they once used to buy these sorts of entertainments.  Things aren't likely to get any better in his second term either since two big priorities he has announced are importing millions of new residents from Mexico to compete for entry level jobs that our youth would normally take and raising the minimum wage so that there are fewer of those jobs.  Combine that with Obamacare kicking in to punish businesses who hire and the fact that each kid entering the workplace now start out with $100,000 in public debt added in Obama's term alone and it isn't hard to see why money for things like video games is drying up.

So in short, this is the new normal under socialism.  Get used to it.

kgbkgb1967
kgbkgb1967 like.author.displayName 1 Like

Can't even read the comments on a video gaming article without some idiot blaming Obama for everything wrong in the entire world. 

nonamemcgee63
nonamemcgee63

@kgbkgb1967 amen to that, it's sad people really think that one man controls this country. It just shows their level of education when they believe every problem with an entire country can be traced back to one person.

A part of the problem is these people who are making it impossible for others to do their jobs and the there are way to many people who will stop at nothing to try to make obama look bad.

davej728
davej728

@BenFranklin Right. It's Obama's fault. The usual drivel from the toothless Teabilly set, always in denial about the wealthy, corporations, and Wall Street gutting America. It's amazing what Teabillies will say for a taste of rich man boot leather. Lick lick!

BenFranklin
BenFranklin

@davej728 @BenFranklin Obama is a corporatist... which is to say a fascist.  Try to keep up Dave. Even Palin understood that and she is not the sharpest tool in the shed..  Obama's thing is to create onerous regulations and then profit from selling special dispensation from them.  That is not the corporation's fault.  They deal with the reality at hand... and the reality is that the government has too much power and shakes down businesses for money in return for allowing them to continue to operate at a profit. 

The Tea Party understands this.  OWS whines about it but can't really articulate what is going on. They get cause and effect completely backwards.  If the government did not have the power to create these onerous regulations and then issue waivers and special dispensations then demagogues like Obama would have no way to profit from our downfall. That was the entire purpose of the 14th amendment which has essentially been gutted.

Look at the mortgage mess as an example.  That was created by the moral hazard (look that term up) that comes from providing a guarantee to banks to write bad loans.  The government did this because the banks would not loan to enough poor people for the very simple reason that they would likely not be paid back.  The government decided to use the carrot and the stick against them for social justice reasons.  So they stepped in and guaranteed the banks against all losses while suing the ones who still were reluctant to participate for "red lining."  Obama himself was part of that scam to sue banks and force them to make bad loans.  What else were the banks to do?  Uncle Sam had essentially stepped into a Casino and offered to pick up the tab for any losses while letting them keep their winnings.  The result was perfectly predictable... just as the result from Obamacare is perfectly predictable... but I will leave you to noodle that one out for yourself.  If you can't figure it out then go ask a Tea Partier.

So with the mortgage industry, the inevitable happened... no one paid the loans back and the mortgage companies went under.  None of this would have happened in a free market where you have the discipline of competition,  profit, loss and bankruptcy.  Bush warned Congress no less than 17 times what was happening but Barney Frank replied "I am willing to roll the dice."  Then the American people turn around and elected the party that caused the mess!  It was madness on stilts but most people have an understanding of economics that is as shallow as yours Dave and they are easily lead by the nose.

You need to understand something very basic..." toothless Teabillys" as you call them have a very much more sophisticated understanding of economics, and cause and effect, than you do.  You would do well to listen to what they have to say instead of mindlessly repeating baseless propaganda against them.  It doesn't make you cool to spout such things.  It just makes you a tool for the powers that be... and a rather dull one at that.  You claim to hate the corporations who conspire with government to gain unfair advantage.  But you are their greatest ally and they depend on you for their continued existence.   The only real way to stop the cycle it to take away the government's power to create unfair advantages and make everyone compete.

NowI have explained to you how Obama, and those like him, are at fault.  You at least no longer have the excuse of ignorance to hide behind.  Now let's see if you are smart enough to have listened and learned something.

nonamemcgee63
nonamemcgee63

@BenFranklin You must not understand the value of lending and why it's important for our country to have banks lending money..........If you lose 3 million but make 6 million the losses don't matter. The bigger picture is what matters you still made 3 million.

segesta65
segesta65 like.author.displayName 1 Like

@BenFranklin But when the minimum wage is $9/hour, think of all the money kids will have from their entry level jobs!

OH, wait. With a $9 min wage, there won't BE any entry level jobs. Never mind.

segesta65
segesta65

When Nintendo puts out a Legend of Zelda game for the Wii U in 2014, sales will soar. To sell a console, you gotta have the games.

Viktor_King
Viktor_King like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

What irritates me about these articles is that they consistently ignore the decades-old monolith of PC games. Is the market dying, waning, or is it going somewhere else?

The PC game library only grows, 'exclusivity' for a game typically doesn't apply to discluding the PC, the hardware only gets better without the growing pains of gimmicky launch titles or wide-spread hardware failure, all while retaining a massive percentage of legacy titles, and an X360 gamepad works just as well on a PC as it does an XBox. These articles acknowledge mobile phones, but not the progenitor of billion-dollar franchises such as Call of Duty or Grand Theft Auto or The Sims.

Take your desktop computer, put a $200 video card into it. Connect it to your flat panel TV, using a wireless keyboard, mouse, and X360 gamepad to surf the web, grind rails, and drift apexes at the track, and of course, shoot all manner of scary people and space aliens with all the same blockbuster games. Try this for a year, and see how anxious you are to stand in line for two days to get the newest Playstation or XBox.

Where's the console market going?

calewds
calewds

@Viktor_King  People just aren't that interested in owning desktops anymore. Gaming laptops are prohibitively expensive and in order to build a cost effective gaming PC, you have to order the parts and build it yourself. This is daunting for a lot of people.

Viktor_King
Viktor_King

@calewds

That doesn't make any sense considering you probably posted that from a department-store desktop computer.

My argument is that the average department-store computer is only a $200 video card away from being a phenomenal gaming machine. You don't need to spend $300-600 on a video card to get a good gaming experience. You're welcome to, and there is a benefit to that. But a comparable console experience can be had for many people to make what I firmly believe to be the better long-term investment in the desktop computers they already have.

These articles consistently ignore the platform that gave birth to nearly all of these billion-dollar franchises that drive console sales, consistently ignore the likes of Steam, Stardock, and Good Old Games, and consistently ignore PC centric markets like Russia, Korea, China, and Taiwan where consoles draw a collective 'meh~'.

It's flawed journalism to suggest that only television consoles are worthy of media attention and to further suggest that if the only gaming platforms that get consistent media attention are experiencing a slump, the reason must be the economy or that gamers are fickle and suddenly prefer their iPhones to consoles.

I'm one more person screaming in a crowded nightclub, "Look at PC hardware sales from all retailers! Look at digital sales of PC games! Look at anti-consumer business practices of GameStop and Best Buy! Look at the gaming habits in countries that don't sell consoles! Hey! Hey! There's another side to this story!" while the same old wub-wub just drizzles out of the mainstream media.

calewds
calewds

@Viktor_King 

I actually posted from my laptop which is probably the only thing a lot of people look at when choosing a new computer. By a lot, I mean millions of consumers that either see desktops as only for office use or relics of the past. I agree with you that it really isn't very difficult to build a PC that is vastly superior to consoles, I'm just saying that's not the mindset that a huge amount of potential buyers have.

KGelner
KGelner

@calewds @Viktor_King Most laptops are powerful enough now they are quite practical gaming systems. The days of millions buying a powerful desktop and an expensive 3D card are long over.  That's a very niche market now.

shikiryougi1
shikiryougi1

@KGelner No they aren't. Btw it is more difficult to upgrade a laptop then it is a desktop. So when a gaming laptop is greatly outdated you have to buy a new one. While with a desktop you can just easily replace the old hardware.

styrgwillidar
styrgwillidar

@calewds @Viktor_King Well, if you look you can get a good deal in a suitable gaming laptop but for the same money a PC will be better and is upgradeable whereas very few laptops can accept upgrade cards. And those cards are expensive since they're proprietary to the laptop mfr.

It's a shame people are put off at the idea of building their own. Lot's easier to troubleshoot when you have all the documentation and there's tons of support as all the component manufacturers run forums on their websites. And its much easier to build a PC now than it was 20 years ago. 

Folks don't realize there are a lot of small computer places which will build to order. You pick the components and they assemble, op-check the set-up.

danielheartland
danielheartland

How does everyone keep comparing consoles released in 2005 (Xbox360), 2006 (Wii), and 2007 (PS3) to an economy circa 2013! The Market has grown people! And just like any thriving market, expectations will be higher! Ask Apple.


The Wii U needed to sell 5.5 Million in the first quarter. They sold 4M, and expectations were slashed in January. The ripple effects are still being felt across the market. Publishers aren't so keen on the idea of exclusivity.


But the problem is the innovation economy. We've been using roughly the same controllers for 15+ years! And now Nintendo, usually the source for outside-the-box thinking, has abandoned their attempts and adopted a similar gaming pad for the Wii U. The PS3 and Xbox360 already have very awkward-looking controllers. My parents think so, but how they love Smart Phones. In a world where Phones and Tablets are using speedy touch-screen OS systems, this particular market feels so retro and rudimentary. They need major innovation, or they lose a new generation to said tech.

angie.azcaban
angie.azcaban

@danielheartlandYou have one of the many misconceptions people have about the Wii U.  The Wii U Gamepad is a controller offering new gameplay experiences.  Currently it is only available for one player, though the purchase of an optional second Gamepad we are told will happen this year.  The Wii U can be turned on, navigated, and played all by using a now standard Wii Motion Plus Remote.  This remote has more axis detection than the original remote that released for the Wii, making the use of the controller more intuitive than simple wagging.  The reason Nintendo includes the Gamepad is so that ALL Wii U owners can have unique new gameplay experiences.  The Wii U offers the most controller options of any console to date.

wbeck314
wbeck314

@danielheartland That is not how the Video Game Market Works. A Larger Install Base does not insist upon a larger launch. That is why The last Generation, Wii Aside, sold only marginally faster than the one before it. Slower if you Compare 360 and PS3 to PS2. 

Five million Consoles in 3 months was a wholly unrealistic goal by anyone's standards. The phenomenon Nintendo created with the Wii will never happen again. It had the advantage of Introducing Video Games to people who really had no idea what they were. Now, games are mainstream. They are part of the standard culture.

 People know they have Six years to get in to the market, they don't have to rush out at launch. It's not a smartphone that will be replaced in 3 months. 

Most Gamers know that Console Launches are always riddled with software shortages and OS bugs. Only the truly Hardcore Console Fans will rush out at Launch to pick up the "next great console". 

Over the next year, Nintendo with iron out the bugs and Push the Big names and like the 3DS before it, it will eclipse it's predecessor. With a massive influx of software coming later this year, and a horde of Fans waiting in the Wings, the Wii U will probably see a significant post e3 Sales Bump and another 3 million console Christmas.

At the 18 month mark, where Console Success is actually visible and measurable, Nintendo Wii U will most likely be Sitting Pretty with a Solid 10 Million Console Sales taking the Reigns as the Fastest Selling Console in History.

KitsuneHazard
KitsuneHazard like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

Consoles aren't dying, they're constantly innovating and trying to redefine how we play and enjoy games. 

Maybe the game developers should stop making generic games that are garbage constantly...

KitsuneHazard
KitsuneHazard like.author.displayName 1 Like

I should also say that with nearly non-existent advertising, the Wii U managed to sell 3mil+ copies (not sure of the exact number to date) compared to 3.2mil of the insanely marketed Wii. That says something...

wbeck314
wbeck314 like.author.displayName like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 3 Like

Again with the "Only 3 million".. Who hires these people?

The Wii U's 3 million Sales in 2 months is the second fastest selling console on History! Only the Wii has ever Sold more Units Faster! For the love of god, learn what your talking about. Idiots..

ChrisBuchanan
ChrisBuchanan like.author.displayName 1 Like

This is all just hype to generate website clicks and points for comment/message board trolls. During the launch of the last generation of consoles, the highly successful Wii sold 3.2 million compared to Wii U's "dissapointing" 3 million in the same time period, while both PS3 and Xbox 360 sold even less than that. The new consoles, led by Nintendo and Wii U, are switching from CPU intensive architecture to GPU and memory based game design. This reduces production costs of AAA titles by a factor of 10. Nintendo's restructured it's entire company to take advantage of this and survive yet another Video Game Crash, just as it has for the past 30 years. Finally, Wii U's launch line-up compares quite favorably to what was offered by all three major consoles in the last generation, but the gaming press have awfully short memories, and trolls spread misinformation and outright lies by skillfully playing on "journalists" desire to write expose's and generate ad-revenue.

Korgoth
Korgoth like.author.displayName like.author.displayName 2 Like

The advantage that consoles always have and will have is a unified platform which for a 5-6 year window all games released will be compatible.

The Wii U's launch is lackluster in comparison to what?  Nearly every other console in the past 7 console generations has had a launch similar or worse than the Wii U.  Sure there are a few outliers like the original Wii, but compared to nearly every other system the Wii U has been a huge success!  New systems never sell as well as older systems in their twilight years.

therantguy
therantguy

This was written by somebody who isn't a gamer and does not understand the market.

1) Everyone who wants a PS3 or XBOX360 has one. The PS3 is 5+ years old. The XBOX 360 is 5.5+ years old. Who exactly is supposed to be the market at this point? 

2) Wii U is expensive, has no games AND most importantly the vast bulk of Wii buyers went from WOW to MEH six months after buying it. I don't know a single Wii system owner who plays it much anymore. 

So you are declaring the death of a product category based on a market with two very old systems (10-12 year cycle my rear end, the lifespan is 5-6 years) and a new system that is the next iteration of the highest selling system in history.


Every economic analysis seems to forget that when people buy something, they no longer need to buy more of them.

shikiryougi1
shikiryougi1

@therantguy Umm there are still pletnly of who don't have PS3 or 360 and still want one. I think it's foolish to assume that everyone who wants a ps3 or 360 already has one by now.

 Also look up xenoblade chronicles plenty of people still play the wii a lot just for that game and it doesn't have any multiplayer.

MatthewBryant
MatthewBryant

@therantguy PS2 was the highest selling system in history at 150 million consoles sold.  Just a correction.  ;)

mrbomb13
mrbomb13

@therantguy 

The Economics concept you mention is called Utility.  

Utility is the economists' term for how "happy" a purchase of a good/service makes a consumer.  With each subsequent purchase of the same good, the utility decreases each time.

magicalmatt42
magicalmatt42

The problem with people looking at consoles as their own market. The hardware does not sell the hardware. Software sells hardware, and the Wii U's underwhelming launch has everything to do with it's library. 

X-box console sales dropping has everything to do with nearly every household already having one, many having bought 2. 

Then in this next generation we will see less physical sales and less console sales, because of steam and steam like services that already have libraries and promise of most new releases where you want them, moving with you from computer to computer in your life, always backwards compatible. 

AndyAhern
AndyAhern

@magicalmatt42 To add on to what you said, as a gamer, I've moved on from consoles. They're obsolete within a few years, hardware-wise, compared to PC. Game selection sucks. The one place where consoles excelled, sports games, has been dragged under by EA for the past few years. That, coupled with a failing business model (DRM, paid online features, stuff that used to be free) leads to me running away from consoles, both personally, and financially.

angie.azcaban
angie.azcaban

@AndyAhern @magicalmatt42 Consoles are definately cheaper to get into, but many gamers will have both console and PC.  For me as the console costs have come down I have a high end PC, Wii U, Wii, 360, PS3, Vita, and 3DS.  My point is that to get the best gaming experiences you can't usually lock yourself into one gaming system.  Nintendo has it's franchises, the PC has it's great graphics (but few if any exclusives).  Consoles allow for used game purchases, something you can't do with the PC.  Steam sales for PC help, or piracy if your into that.  But I don't see the point in claiming one platform is entirely superior to another, it seems a little naive to me.

magicalmatt42
magicalmatt42

@AndyAhern Well I don't think consoles are "obsolete". In so many ways they're already next to non existent. By that I mean most of them are multimedia devices, not just gaming. But even now the PS3 is a fairly decent computing device with a really limiting OS. The only thing that makes it a 'console' is the OS, keeping it locked down to a lot of things you pointed out. I know it's a knitpick, but it's to point out that the hardware they're selling you isn't special. Thanks for adding on!