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Submitted by Mac is OK 1384d ago | article

Is video game retail dying? Three theories behind January's sales downer

Last month, January 2012, was the 28th month of decline since the U.S. retail video game industry peaked 35 months ago, in March 2009. That's the context I want to set for a conversation about last month's retail sales estimates, as released by the NPD Group last Thursday. (3DS, Industry, Nintendo DS, PC, PS3, PSP, Tag Invalid, Wii, Xbox 360)

deep_fried_bum_cake  +   1384d ago
3 theories and not one of them mentions the fact that throughout the world there has been a recession and most people don't have the money to splash on games right now.
ReservoirDog316  +   1384d ago
Plus, you know, a lot of people are only like 7% into Skyrim.
Solid_Snake37  +   1384d ago
It's no coincidence that that peak has to do with MW2, mw2 was released it 2009 if I'm not mistaken.
Christopher  +   1383d ago
It's not my fault I'm still at 7%! They keep respawning all the wildlife and I need the pelts to work on creating items in order to create ridiculous alchemy and smithing boosting items.
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SilentNegotiator  +   1383d ago
Who needs theories?

Jan 2011
*Dead Space 2 (Highly rated, on many platforms)
*DC Universe (at least sold notably out of gate)
*LBP2 (awesome game)
*Mass Effect 2 ps3 (an already established well-rated series)

Jan 2012
*Silent Hill Collection
*Soul Caliber V (rating lower than prequel, no star wars characters)
*FF13-2 (sequel to controversial entry)
*NeverDead (released the very last day of January, poorly rated)

SOURCE: VGReleases (So I'm sorry if any of these are wrong, or if I forgot something big)
Titanz  +   1384d ago
Considering the Wii isn't selling as we're use to...
Its definitely causing this downward effect towards the gaming industry. Publishers want the Wii U as an extra platform to release their content on (while exemplifying 3rd exclusives, of course).

The industry "needs" new a, innovate console to keep its economy balanced.
Dlacy13g  +   1384d ago
I definitely agree that the Wii certainly is part of the problem here. Not only is the hardware in decline but honestly in the past 2 months since mid Dec. there have been maybe 5 retail titles to come out here in N. America. The Wii software line up so far for 2012 is absolutely horrid and not looking too great moving forward either. How can they possibly sell games when literally there is nothing to sell? Nintendo may have won the hardware war via sheer numbers but its pretty shameful how they have handled the software side of things early in 2012.
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MultiConsoleGamer  +   1384d ago
Consumers are waiting for new hardware. Stretching the hardware gen beyond the traditional 5 years have bit the industry in the ass.
vortis  +   1384d ago
Unfortunately EA and Activi$ion will still cash in on today's gaming machines with annual outings of Madden and Call of Duty, prancing around with $1 billion and complaining about used game sales and how online play needs an additional $20 surcharge.

I agree with you that the industry as a whole is suffering because of a lot of people's greed. Thankfully Nintendo is actually in the running to do something different so we'll see how the Wii U turns out.

I almost feel bad for Sony because it doesn't sound like they're in a financial stable position to leverage the PS4 as a monster console the way they did with the PS3.
Knight_Cid  +   1384d ago
here we go.........more crackpot theories from dummies

How about the fact there were less releases than ever.............. in january

How about the fact that we are at the end of system cycles?

its all comign together
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Soldierone  +   1384d ago
Couldn't help but think that too...what released in January? NeverDead a game almost no gamer gave a chance to because "reviewers" said it sucked and it wasn't realistic.

It's not like we saw a Battlefield, Dead Space, Uncharted, or Assassins Creed release to terrible sales numbers....ITS FRIGGIN JANUARY, there is your theory.

Heck what released in December? Nothing, so all those AAA games were purchased by Christmas.
Knight_Cid  +   1384d ago
"The PlayStation Vita, for example, is a $250 handheld launching into a market where a $170 Nintendo handheld with glasses-free 3D effects and two major Mario games can't break 200,000 systems in a month."

Lets be clear. The 3ds has been outpacing every other nintendo system in history in the US ( it outpaced the ds in like 8 months) . So it isnt bad it cant break 200k, thats just some arbitrary made up number

The 3ds was number 1 worldwide in 2011 in 9 months. Selling over 16 million units so far, in less than 1 fiscal year

Over exaggerating

Once the 3ds gets a remodel, it will take off like the ds lite, and then we will see.
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Soldierone  +   1384d ago
One day we will be at the point that 10 million is the number. "Oh well the game/hardware didn't sell 10 million units within 5 hours so its failing!"
clearelite  +   1384d ago
Well, there haven't been many huge, highly marketed games released recently.

The thing about the consoles being too old is pretty much BS, as the PS2 sold as much as 20 million units(a year) between it's 4th and 7th years and in it's 8th year sold around 15m units.

If you are anxious to start next gen so you can mAx GameZ ouT on yer TV, please consider the creative limitations high development costs(can often) employ.

Or go play Crysis on your UbER RiG.

No, video game retail is not dying, just look at the sales figures. Although they are down from their peak, so is the "economy". There are always valleys and peaks. The fact that there are valleys means that there will be fluctuations. A peak could indeed happen again within the near future.
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TacoTaru  +   1384d ago
Back in the day I bought lots of games. At one point I think I had 26 pre-orders at Gamestop. Then I started playing FFXI online. It stopped me from buying any other games for many, many months. I remember thinking that I was saving a ton of money even though I paid for 2 subscriptions. I wonder if the popularity of the Online FPS games something to do with this.

My son now plays online games exclusively. I keep offering to buy him new and interesting releases but he likes playing LOL and HON with his friends online. I bought him Dark Souls just to try to get him to try something else - it hasn't been opened. I might have to adopt a kid just so I can watch some gaming.

Recap - the longevity of online fps and other games might have something to do with it.
tachy0n  +   1384d ago
not the entire planet has access to the internet, so, no.
GraveLord  +   1384d ago
and those that do have low download/upload speeds.

The January sales have nothing to do with "retail dying". it has to do with current-gen consoles slowing down as they enter their 6th and 7th years on the market and following an extremely successful holiday 2011.
FrigidDARKNESS  +   1384d ago
It's the lack of ne creativity that killing the industry.
mamotte  +   1384d ago
Maybe it's because all people were drinking and partying and traveling in december and early january, they're tight in money, and are waiting for more money to buy stuff.
Tenkay23  +   1384d ago
He had three theories. Here are more we missed.

Theory 4:

An economic recession began in late 2008. There are no jobs, and gaming is an expensive hobby. It is one of the first things families cut out of their budget.

Theory 5:

The HD era has introduced us to beautiful games, but also higher development costs, which leads us to higher retail game prices. The Wii and PS2 sold the most software and hardware in their generations because of many reasons, one of them being that games were priced around $50. Now we get $60 games that are 70% complete, and require us to pay for overpriced DLC to get the complete package (online passes, unlocking characters, unlocking special weapons and costumes that are already on the disc).

Theory 6:

Combine theory 4 and 5 together. We are in a recession where there are no jobs, people can't afford the luxury to game, and gaming has become more expensive. Its a double whammy. Gaming costs more AND people have less money to buy games.
Skynetone  +   1384d ago
ssx tricky will get the ball rolling for 2012
AdvanceWarsSgt  +   1383d ago
Whoa now it's way too early to predict the new SSx will be as good as Tricky.
Chevalier  +   1384d ago
Honestly there weren't any major releases this january, compared to last year that is.
spenn2010  +   1383d ago
Theories.....? there is only one fact. Games recently released aren't that good. The amount of sequels and generic IP's like Never Dead deter me from spending 60.00. I don't dislike sequels i just feel there are too many and game makers need to get me interested again.
monkey nuts  +   1383d ago
I'm pretty much of the same mindset as you, but to counter this I've bought a few classics for my snes. Super Tennis, Super ghouls and ghosts and super mario world. Epic gameplay is epic. Got all of them for less than £30, and two were boxed with instructions. The internet can be useful for more than just watching pron it would seem....
ZippyZapper  +   1383d ago
Because everyone bought em duing the holiday season.

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