In his regular, in-depth look at April 2009's NPD numbers, Gamasutra's Matt Matthews examines the disappointing month from multiple angles, from Sony's results and theorized price cut plans, through the numbers behind the software sales drop.
Matt Matthews: "Commonly characterized as "recession-resistant", the video game industry finally appears to be feeling the global economic downturn that has affected so many other parts of the economy.
According to the NPD Group, which tracks retail sales in the United States, video game sales in April 2009 were down 17% from the same period last year.
There are a lot of reasons for the drop, and the recession is merely one possible factor. From the dynamics of the hardware market (including the phenomenal Nintendo DSi) to the doldrums of the software charts, from hardware pricing to a hidden trend in accessory sales, we'll try to give the context necessary for understanding where the industry stands right before the biggest trade show of the year, E3 2009."