Posted by: seanmalstrom | May 25, 2014

Email: NPD 2014 April

Hello Malstrom,

NPD April is out and we have:
PS4-~ 199 k
XBO-115 k
Wii U-
360 – 71 k
PS3-
3DS-
Vita-~ 3 k
Do you remember April ’07’s NPD?
NDS: 471,000
Wii: 360,000
PlayStation 2: 194,000
PlayStation Portable: 183,000
Xbox 360: 174,000
Game Boy Advance: 84,000
PlayStation 3: 82,000
GameCube: 13,000
Yeah, the market is shrinking indeed…

 

I didn’t really say anything about NPD because there isn’t much to say. Minecraft somehow moved up to like #4 which I think is funny (Minecraft is a game of blocks when we were told that the Xbox 360 was the ‘Era of HD’ and that all games must be super sophisticated in graphics let alone the Xbox One and PS4 graphical capabilities…).

I think the big story at the moment is the transition of last generation. There is always a transition period with each generation. Not everyone has the new consoles. Console companies and game companies still expect the prior generation of consoles and games to sell significantly if at a reduced rate. It is high profit for everyone with earlier gen systems still selling. Nintendo and third parties were making much profit off of GBA software and hardware despite the DS’s existence. Same goes for the PS2 with the arrival of PS3 and 360 (as the April 2007 numbers above show).

The Seventh Generation hardware and software has really flatlined instead of giving a nice smooth transition to Eighth Generation hardware and software. The most profitable money in the market is being taken away. The Game Industry must be very concerned about that.

What I find interesting now in these NPD reports is not what is said but what isn’t being said. No one touches on Minecraft’s permanent home int he top ten list. You don’t hear anyone talking about the extremely fast fade out of Generation 7 products. You hear much praise for Sony for the PS4, but crickets for the Vita. PS4 will likely be the best selling system this generation but Vita is definitely the WORST selling system. Is Sony brilliant or stupid this generation? Remember how in Generation Six that Nintendo was DOGGED left and right for the Gamecube yet no one pointed out the extremely high GBA sales. If a console company has a handheld and home console sell very well and the other very poorly, isn’t it better to not just say ‘Brilliant!’ or ‘Terrible!’ but moderate the two views as the company is selling a bad and good selling product?

As I understand it, America’s retailers are being hit HARD. Walmart is down. K-Mart and Sears are about to go out of business. If only Gamestop would go out of business, then there would be silver lining. However, that might be a bad thing if Gamestop went belly up because then all the hardcore gamers would be unleashed onto the streets, property values would plummet, and neighborhoods nationwide would begin to resemble Detroit.


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