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What the hell is going on with the Console War?

Sarcastic Gamer writes:

"The question I ask: What's the deal with Microsoft losing the entire first quarter of 2008's hardware sales to the PS3 and Wii while not really seeming to give a crap? Is it all show (the not giving a crap part) or what?

Maybe I should start taking bets for what Microsoft's "official" reason will be this time. They've already used up "underestimated demand" and "production capacity issues". My money's going on "Who cares about March anyway?! March is a stupid doo-doo month!"

Now, we're approaching official confirmation of the third time (in a row no less,) suggesting this is edging toward an actual "trend" with the monthly order of hardware sales repeatedly coming in Wii>PS3>360. Maybe someone should call Microsoft and point out that they've now seemingly lost the entire first quarter of the year to the competition in terms of hardware sales..."

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thereapersson3383d ago (Edited 3383d ago )

It's not surprising to see Sony doing as well as they are now, however, seeing as how many people predicted (even back in the middle of 2007) that 2008 would be Sony's comeback year. So far most of the predictions have come true, with only really extreme naysayers and nitpicky fanboys complaining about issues that are or have become moot points.

On the other hand, while MS' lineup this year is a little vague in terms of a full list of heavy hitters throughout the entire year, even the stupidest PS3 fanboy can realize that there are many systems sellers that not only loyal 360 fans will purchase on day one, but will also bring in new users, further expanding the 360's already sizeable install base. I do think that MS will have a harder time when it comes to hardware sales, due to the victory of Blu Ray in the public arena.

It will be interesting to see by the end of this summer just how well the PS3 will continue to evolve.

EDIT: Another point we have to consider is how long does Microsoft plan on supporting the 360? When the PS3 finally hits its stride and catches up to where the 360 is now (hard to tell at this point if that will take a year, or if it will happen quicker than that), will Microsoft already be planning to roll out their next console? I highly doubt that they will abandon the 360 as quickly as they did the original XBOX, but while we know of Sony's proposed "10 year console lifespan", nobody has really heard of any longevity plans from MS. Ultimately in all arguements, time will tell.

jkhan3383d ago

Well actually you are quite right about the new xbox console. I remember when Sony announced the 10 year life cycle and some reporter asked this question to Peter Moore and he simply dodged the question. If Sony continues its momentum and catches up with 360 by next year. Microsoft will definitely release a new console. Just to stay in the market.

InMyOpinion3383d ago

I don't think MS will drop their support for the 360 anytime soon. People seem to forget that the 360 is still pretty far ahead of the PS3 in terms of install base. I don't know the exact numbers but I think the gap is something close to 7 million consoles.

What I find weird is that MS seems to have gone under the radar since Peter Moore left the company. I rarely see any PR releases from MS anymore. If they want to stay in the race they need to promote the 360 and it's titles better.

Expy3383d ago

I probably only see Fable 2 as a potential system seller for the 360 coming this year (only because it has not been officially stated for release on PC). Since it does have the existing Fable fanbase out there that were playing on PC, I think it's the only crowd it can attract. Gears is not really a system seller, the crowd that will purchase it is mostly current Gears of War owners.

mindedone3383d ago

By all means, I am not commenting on the quality of the game. It's just that you tend to see system movers be titles from last generation. These are titles that gamers who have yet to plunge into the current gen have some sort of familiarity with. GTA is a system mover because it was played last gen. Halo is a system mover because it was played last gen. Mario, MGS, GooW, GT, are all last gen titles. I expect GeoW3 to be a system mover, if the next one does well.

rawg3383d ago

I doubt that MS would come out with a new console this soon. There would be no advantage for them to do anything until Sony/Nintendo also announce new consoles. Anything sooner and all they would be doing is cannibalizing their current fanbase while they pissed off third-party game developers. Let's take a look at this from a customer and developer perspective.

Customers: Anybody who hasn't made a jump to an HD console yet would probably write off the 360 as "last gen" but at the same time they wouldn't be interested in a new console with "no games" on it yet. Logic would drive them to get a PS3 instead.

Developers: Game developers wouldn't be interested in investing in upgrading their engines for the next Xbox knowing that the install base is lower than the PS3. The X3 would then suffer from the same multi-plat porting issues that plagued the PS3 in 2007.

The only marginally acceptable strategy that wouldn't alienate developers or customers would be a 360 with the same architecture and GPU with upgraded memory, BR drive, mandatory HDD and motion controls that was fully backward compatible. Basically, it would be a slightly improved X360 that highlights the shortcomings of the original X360 while splitting the customer base for publishers.

It's a lose-lose proposition for MS. As bad as things are looking for them in 2008+, they're going to have to play out this gen with the console they brought to the dance.

juuken3383d ago

I think M$ will come out with a new system but not yet. They're mainly depending on GTAIV, Gears of War II, and maybe Ninja Gaiden 2 to help them along. It depends on those game really, IMO.

thePatriot3382d ago (Edited 3382d ago )

nobody played Gears 1 on xbox and it was a system mover for 360. but you are right about gears 2 not being a system mover. how much better can the sequel be to make you by 360 if the first did'nt do it?
It will sell great and sell a few consoles as well, but if you dont like the first you wont like the second. plus it will come to pc later on I bet.
edit: what the hell is going on? ps3 comming back, thats whats going on.

fusionboxer3382d ago

But I really don't give a crap about the so called "war" anymore. It just seems so trivial at this point when you look at it all from the perspective of someone that isn't as hardcore gamer as he once was, but still enjoys reading the latest news.

Anyone with me on this? I mean I'm excited about certain games coming out, but not really on one specific console. Well actually nevermind, most of them are on the ps3 and that's now the only console I own (360 is gone guys...sorry), but that doesn't matter. I can without a doubt still say i'm looking forward to Gears of War 2 and Resistance 2 in almost equal forms. I see both as radically different, but who cares. The 360 may lose it's lead by the end of the year, but i'm just happy to know that the majority of people in the world now except gaming as a pretty solid part of their culture.

+ Show (5) more repliesLast reply 3382d ago
resistance1003383d ago

Simple, I would say Blu-ray winning, doubled the perceived value of the PS3

thereapersson3383d ago

For better or worse (most optimists would see it for better), Blu Ray is driving PS3 console sales. The good thing about this, is the increased potential for those who buy it originally for movies, to now have the ability to play next-generation games as well.

sonarus3383d ago

That is exactly what it is. PS3 is simply more value for your money in the eyes of the common consumer where things like wi fi don't matter that much. Main things now are blu ray and upcoming games. Despite the 360's robusr library, it becomes harder to use as a selling point the older the titles get.

Boink3383d ago

but that's likely a big part of it.

MS NEEDS a US price cut big time. the pro bundle should be about 250$ right now.

people are slowly recognizing that the 360 does have the games advantage, but sony has the playstation brand that will help them sell well, tacked on with a blu ray victory, they are catching up quickly. MS better get it's butt in gear if they don't want to be left behind.

oh and enough with the "stock availability" excuse. if you're so low on consoles, grab some 360's from japan, they have tons leftover...

Gorgon3383d ago

"people are slowly recognizing that the 360 does have the games advantage"

Well, thats a matter of personal preference, not a fact. For someone that prefers MGS 4, Eight Days, Heavy Rain, Ico 3, God of War 3, Killzone 2, Resistance 2, L. A. Noir, Forbidden Siren 3, Getaway 3, LittleBig Planet, etc, all of them exclusives, I think its a bit of a strech to point out the 360 as having the games "advantage". I woudn't trade the games of the PS3 for those of the 360 in any circumstance, for example.

sonarus3383d ago

The average consumer doesn't see that far into the future on most games. At most they will see god of war 3 and final fantasy as exclusives. Everything else is simply too far away to use as an effective selling point. However as the titles begin to unfold such as MGS4, GT5P, Little Big Planet, Socom, Killzone, Resistance 2, Getaway 3(assuming it comes out this yr) Motorstorm. As those titles beging to come out, the ps3 value just goes higher.

What microsoft needs to do is cut the price of the 360 so it is representative of the value for the money. No one is willing to pay 350 for a premium when they can add 50 bucks onto that and get a ps3 which has a blu ray drive and an extra 20gigs of storage. The comparisosn for average consumer don't really go beyond that

meepmoopmeep3383d ago

Blu-ray winning has a big impact on PS3 sales and it has greater value now that people know it can also play HD movies. The other driving force is that the big franchises are coming from here on out and a lot of the people on the fence until their favorite franchise is released will now have more incentive to pick up a PS3.

now that the format war is over we will be seeing Sony focus a lot more on gaming than anything else. They were taking it one step at a time and the format war was their first priority because they knew the games were coming.

pegger243383d ago

how was 8 days? was it good, was the game play good? did you just love Ico 3?
Please talk about games that are out

Lists are for old women at the grocery store

Back on Topic
You are right resistance, Blu Ray winning has had a huge effect on PS3 sales, so did getting more games out. The ps3 has a lot of games worth playing right now and that is helping. I think we will see even more of these bad boys selling once us US'ers get our Bush checks.

rawg3383d ago

Blu-ray win definitely adds a check to the PS3 side of the PS3/360 T chart but I think the buzz around big playstation franchises coming to the PS3 is contributing to that perceived value as well.

Let's take a hypothetical gamer who hasn't bought an HD console yet and imagine what his decision making process looks like for buying a console to go with GTAIV... (stream of consciousness mode)

...hmmm... I hear the Xbox will have exclusive DLC for GTAIV and damn I love that game so much I would light my crotch on fire and let a gang of high-heel wearing, man-hating lesbians stomp it out... but will I really get to the DLC? When is it coming out anyway? and what's in it?... I hear good things about Live too but I've never really played online before so I don't know what I'm missing plus I have to pay $50 to play online?... and what's this RROD thing everyone talks about?...

...I guess I could buy it for the PS3 too... I've been meaning to get a blu-ray player for my new HDTV and so it's like I would be getting one for free... plus I want to play the new MGS4 when that comes out... maybe FFXIII too but I won't tell my friends about that because they'll give me crap about being a homo... oh and God of War 3 - holy crap, I gotta play that when it comes out...

tough decisions, tough decisions...

zethos563383d ago

It depends what games the potential ps3/360 buyer wants. Nice way to be biased.

But I agree the ps3 is better if you want HD movies

-EvoAnubis-3383d ago

Don't know pegger. How was GeOW2? How about Fable 2; I heard that was a good one. How about Halo Wars?

What's your point?

dan-boy3382d ago

so if the library is not a selling point, can you please explain why the ps2 outsells nearly everything month after month?? is it because of all the expected blockbusters that are about to get released? or is it because of the amazing game library that the ps2 enjoys??

yeah, the console is cheap as chips nowadays, but who would honestly buy it if it did'nt have that stupendous back catalogue?? seriously, to say that a library is'nt a selling point is stupid to say the least!

Gorgon3382d ago (Edited 3382d ago )

Pegger:

"2.7 - 2.4
how was 8 days? was it good, was the game play good? did you just love Ico 3?
Please talk about games that are out

Lists are for old women at the grocery store"

1) if I talk about games that are out now I'll still be talking about lists. So I guess that both you and me are old women.

2) many people buy a console based on exclusive games and cherished franchises. So I don't need to have played God of War 3, Ico 3, GT5 or FFXIII or whatever when I make a decision about buying a console. Most people buy a console and make their decision based on games and franchises they know will be out for that system. I bet you did the same when you bought a 360 and I bet that when you advise someone on a console you say and think "but the 360 WILL HAVE Alan Wake and GoW2!".

I stand by what I said, liking the games of the 360 or PS3 is a matter of personal taste and, YES, saying that "people are slowly recognizing that the 360 does have the games advantage" is a dumb argument in 2008. Quite the opposite really, people are slowly recognizing that the 360 does not have the game's advantage anymore and it's all a matter of personal taste.

rawg3380d ago

You're right so I agreed with you. I meant to characterize a PS2 owner who hadn't yet bought a PS3/360 trying to make a decision on what console to buy for playing GTA4.

My presumption was that they would be more interested in PS2 franchises but I probably overplayed that. It's fair to assume that many PS2 owners are also interested in Xbox games. I'm interested in Bioshock and Lost Odyssey, for example.

+ Show (10) more repliesLast reply 3380d ago
destroyah3383d ago

PS3 deserves it. 360 doesn't.

Palodios3383d ago

Microsoft really dropped the ball with RROD. 360's were selling like hotcakes until all its hardware problems starting popping up, and now it seems like people outside of the United States are avoiding it like the plague.
How do you have save yourself after major hardware problems two generations in a row?

zethos563383d ago

You save yourself like Sony did with the issues the ps1/ps2 had. And if by two generations you mean the Xbox, wasn't it's issue the faulty wires that caused fires in like .001% of the total Xbox's out there?

celticlonewolf3383d ago

Very well writen and I have to agree with what you have said. I think that 2008 will be the year that sony outsells the 360(in that respect it will be sonys year dont see it outselling the wii). Having said that I do think that by the end of 2008 sony will not have out sold the 360 by such a big difference like some people are thinking. The main factor I think why the 360 is lagging behind in US sales is that the price point is getting very stale and old. I mean with the win of blue ray the 40gig ps3 does seem the better value. I know people can argue about people wanting just a games system and all that but all round value does seem to be in the ps3 favour. 2 and a bit years the 360 been out on the market and has only droped $50 that is a good acheivment but its deffinatly time to drop again. With a price drop I can see ms selling more than the ps3 again ofcourse until the ps3 drops its price then we go back to where we were before lol. At the end both systems will do really well by the end of 2008.

thereapersson3383d ago

Overall though, I want to see more games being sold. Sony needs to get the attach rate of games per console sold up a little bit, even though as it sits with the current number of consoles sold it isn't as bad as fanboys would have you believe.

TheHater3383d ago (Edited 3383d ago )

@thereapersson
There was an article on there about the ps3 having a 1.7 attach rate last November. I am sure that, that number has increase to about 2.5 since the ps3 software is almost the same as the xbox360 over the past several months

Edit: here is the link to an article for attach rate per consoles
http://www.gamasutra.com/ph...

thereapersson3383d ago

I will agree that the attach rate will go up substantially though. I have a feeling that when more big-name titles are released this year, they will be less "slow-burning" in terms of sales when compared to games released around a year ago.

rawg3383d ago

Having high attach rates is a good thing in general but they can be misleading because of the way they are calculated. Attach rates are calculated as total software units / total hardware units so they favor consoles that have been available longer.

This is obviously a better metric for MS which launched a year earlier than the Wii and PS3, which is one reason they've been pushing it so hard as a yard stick for success this generation.

Let's take for example a typical gamer who buys both consoles at launch and 4 games a year for each console.

year 1
360 attach rate: 4
PS3 attach rate: N/A

year 2 - PS3 launch
360 attach rate: 8
PS3 attach rate: 4

year 3
360 attach rate: 12
PS3 attach rate: 8

Another interesting thing about the way that attach rates are calculated is that if hardware sales slow down but software sales stay the same, attach rates go up. This is because HW units are in the denominator.

Monthly software units/revenue is a more objective number to use but even then it has to be normalized against the installed HW base for each respective console.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 3383d ago
Truplaya3383d ago

maybe they prefer making money on games than making a small bit of money selling consoles.

Also,

Bluray is a big factor in selling PS3 (even though it was forced on us)

Everyone i know who wanted a 360 now has one, there are still a few of my mates wanting a PS3

The PS3 is starting to come down in price

No big releases for the 360 yet in 2008, PS3 has had GT5:P to boost sales