NPD Sales Results for January 2015 [PS4 #1, Nintendo Numbers, XB1 Minimum]

Jul 29, 2010
4,242
68
655
Hm I never realized how well OOT 3D did its first month (05. Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D (3DS) Nintendo - 283,200). I guess it's not too surprising that MM3D will do better with the much larger install base, but if I'm not mistaken, Nintendo's chart implies it beat that in a couple days (also a link between worlds did much worse than both remakes?)?
 

John Harker

Definitely doesn't make things up as he goes along.
Feb 26, 2005
17,582
0
0
Santa Destroy
I try to make sense of this statement. I don't get it.

could you please explain?
Games are designed to be fun.
The act of playing them creates positive emotional experiences and responses for the player.

Sales analysis is factual. Based on data. There's no emotion in it.
Was responding to your post. Saying the game is meant to be fun. The talk of the sales should be based on facts. Me saying that marketing will sell the game the first month, and it's reviews will impact it's sales month 2-4 has nothing to do with whether the game is fun or not. Too many people inject personal bias into sales discussions.

That's all I meant.

edit:

further, metacritic is often used on post-launch analysis to measure critical impact on sales trajectory. Enough data exists to forecast or predict a 'curve' based on critical scores that can either lower or raise the tail sales of your game. i.e., 'our goal is to sell 5 million units of this title. therefor, we will spend $100MM in marketing to achieve that goal. If our metacritic is 90+, we can estimate an additional 1MM in sales. So we will reserve 10% of our budget to post-launch to push out an accolades strategy should we reach that critical barrier. if our game is a 70 or below, we estimate we will lose 1MM sales over the rest of fiscal. therefor, we will set aside 10% of our budget and if our critical score is below that threshold, we recommend allocating the remaining funds towards a different product to reach our end of year fiscal goals. If the critical reception is between 76-89, we see no marginal increase or decrease in sales impact, so we recommend continuing with our plan as-is."

a scenario like that is plausible.
And often why you used to see developers incentive via financial gain to reach certain metacritic thresholds, because you can predict revenue increases based on hitting those targets that you can budget for. less so these days tho.

THUS thusly, "critical" reception can impact a plan... but there are a lot of factors that are involved in critical reception. "Fun" as a singular factor isn't really introduced into the equation, unless you're talking about the game itself to friends, or you have some kind of personal agenda.
 
Feb 24, 2014
14,512
0
370
I'm totally using this in the next greenlight meeting I'm in.

"Yes, it's a gazillion dollar budget, but let's be honest here. This is too complicated. Fun is a pretty good sales argument. And this game... this game is fun."

Probably worked for Molyneux at one point.
That was Molyneux's strategy.
 
Nov 18, 2013
4,304
0
355
I'm totally using this in the next greenlight meeting I'm in.

"Yes, it's a gazillion dollar budget, but let's be honest here. This is too complicated. Fun is a pretty good sales argument. And this game... this game is fun."

Probably worked for Molyneux at one point.
If Molineux would have concentrated on that when making his games...

I just do not get you tough guys. Don't you think that being a fun game is an argument to sell it?
Every trailer is selling this. People base their recommendations on this. Let'splayers judge on this. PR is turning around this (or should, when they are not too much in love with PR-speak no one cares about).
Of course we have to analyse sales data, metacritics and performances blahblah. But this is analysing, not selling it. This comes afterwards. First, we have to find arguments why the hell someone should buy this thing.
When I see phrases like "Sales analysis is factual. Based on data. There's no emotion in it." I think we have a problem. Maybe in the controlling department this might work, but not in analysis why a certain game flops or works surprisingly good.
Sure, marketing dollars are a heavy argument, target groups, promos whatever. But we are in the entertainment industry. and we should also remember this. otherwise we lose our customer.
When I used the word "fun" it was because I love simplyfying from time to time. Call it "experience" if you want a hipper vocabulary. Or "excitement" or "divertissement".
I think that sometimes, even a game with mediocre critics can be successful because it is just what the customer wants, a good experience. Nice sound/graphics/simple but efficient gameplay or waggle controls. Maybe analogue to some pop music that critics hate but that you just can't get out of your head (no pun intended).
And I think the order could be something like this.
Maybe I just have a lack of cynism when I am not at work.
Bye for now, have to leave. will collect my beatings tomorrow.
 
Feb 16, 2010
14,234
0
0
Mars
I just do not get you tough guys. Don't you think that being a fun game is an argument to sell it?
"Fun" is assumed to be included as part of the metacritic average. Metacritic scores can be used as a predictive tool for sales.

There is no quantifiable metric to apply for "fun" therefore there's no way to use "fun" as a basis for analyzing the sales potential of a game.

If a game is thought to be really fun, the company could say "based on playtesting, we're raising our anticipated metacritic range from 80-84 to 85-89. This could mean an additional X units" because math.

It's not about being cynical or "tough guys". Numbers have no emotion. They're numbers. Tools with which to work.
 

John Harker

Definitely doesn't make things up as he goes along.
Feb 26, 2005
17,582
0
0
Santa Destroy
Yea. I'll happily talk to you about what intrinsicly makes certain design elements of a game "fun" to engage with or not, if you make a thread for it. This is an NPD Sales Results thread. So of course we're going to focus on the quantitative over the qualitative.
 
Jun 13, 2012
11,333
0
0
So hey,

A lot of the garbage in the review thread today has been about how much "tougher" critics are being on games this gen versus last.

What complete bollocks.

Went back and looked at all the quality scores for the prior gen and the current gen.

Overall average review score this gen is 72. Time aligned last gen was 62.

Of course, the Wii pushed most of that. An average Wii U title has averaged a 68. The average Wii title over the same period of time averaged a 57.

But the average PS4 game has a higher review score (75) than the time aligned PS3 (73). And the average Xone game is rated 74 versus 73 on a time aligned basis for the Xbox 360.

When you look at quality distribution across the full sample, also no change with the exception of the reduced release count.

So much unsubstantiated garbage flies around all the time. Review sites are being no tougher now than they were last time.

There's like this celebration of the failure of The Order and praising of review sites for giving low scores.
That thread is just garbage. If that was my first exposure to gaf, I wouldn't have come back.

The for the interesting numbers, BTW.
 
Jun 13, 2012
11,333
0
0
Games are designed to be fun.
The act of playing them creates positive emotional experiences and responses for the player.

Sales analysis is factual. Based on data. There's no emotion in it.
Was responding to your post. Saying the game is meant to be fun. The talk of the sales should be based on facts. Me saying that marketing will sell the game the first month, and it's reviews will impact it's sales month 2-4 has nothing to do with whether the game is fun or not. Too many people inject personal bias into sales discussions.

That's all I meant.

edit:

further, metacritic is often used on post-launch analysis to measure critical impact on sales trajectory. Enough data exists to forecast or predict a 'curve' based on critical scores that can either lower or raise the tail sales of your game. i.e., 'our goal is to sell 5 million units of this title. therefor, we will spend $100MM in marketing to achieve that goal. If our metacritic is 90+, we can estimate an additional 1MM in sales. So we will reserve 10% of our budget to post-launch to push out an accolades strategy should we reach that critical barrier. if our game is a 70 or below, we estimate we will lose 1MM sales over the rest of fiscal. therefor, we will set aside 10% of our budget and if our critical score is below that threshold, we recommend allocating the remaining funds towards a different product to reach our end of year fiscal goals. If the critical reception is between 76-89, we see no marginal increase or decrease in sales impact, so we recommend continuing with our plan as-is."

a scenario like that is plausible.
And often why you used to see developers incentive via financial gain to reach certain metacritic thresholds, because you can predict revenue increases based on hitting those targets that you can budget for. less so these days tho.

THUS thusly, "critical" reception can impact a plan... but there are a lot of factors that are involved in critical reception. "Fun" as a singular factor isn't really introduced into the equation, unless you're talking about the game itself to friends, or you have some kind of personal agenda.
When you say 'less so these days' are you talking contract terms or the predictive ability of review scores?
 
Apr 14, 2005
10,013
0
0
Funny to look back to GC's third holiday. They refused to let that thing die. $99! Compare that to Wii U's third holiday... lol.
Thing is, GameCube was designed to hit $99.

GameCube underperformed at launch so Yamauchi hit the "$149" button a few months early, before handing off to Iwata. GameCube underperformed in it's second holiday, and Iwata's advisors urged him to hit the "$99" button similarly early, but that price drop costs Nintendo money, so Iwata went with an alternative plan, cutting production, which saves Nintendo money. After a few months, when it became clear that this was a death sentence for GameCube, Iwata bit the bullet, dropped the price to $99, and resumed profitable production.

The overall hit to GameCube from Iwata's delayed move to $99 may have made the difference between "distant second to PS2" and "last place, behind even Xbox". Iwata referred to this event as a lesson he put to use when he saved the 3DS from it's bad start by cutting it's price hard.

But Wii U was (apparently) never designed for such rapid price drops. It was in a money-losing position from day one, and because it crashed harder than GameCube while aiming higher, the cost to drop the price even $50 is significantly higher than it was for GameCube (because Nintendo is sitting on a bigger stockpile, which becomes devalued). And Nintendo was in a better position to take that one-time hit when the GBA's profits were instantly softening the impact. And if the price drops, the Wii U will likely never return to profitable production, if that was ever going to happen at all. And there's no guarantee that any price cut would save the Wii U. The system is so damaged, what's one more death sentence added to the pile?
 
May 16, 2006
6,562
1
1,000
The overall hit to GameCube from Iwata's delayed move to $99 may have made the difference between "distant second to PS2" and "last place, behind even Xbox". Iwata referred to this event as a lesson he put to use when he saved the 3DS from it's bad start by cutting it's price hard.
I don't think drop the price to $99 a little earlier would made that difference.

In fact Cube don't outsold Xbox by a big margin in holiday 2003.
 

John Harker

Definitely doesn't make things up as he goes along.
Feb 26, 2005
17,582
0
0
Santa Destroy
When you say 'less so these days' are you talking contract terms or the predictive ability of review scores?
Contract terms, sorry. I'm Just haven't seen it as much.

Then again... There are a lot less contract work really. Considering the consolidation and closure so many independent studious. A lot of work moved in-house the past gen+.
 
Apr 14, 2005
10,013
0
0
I don't think drop the price to $99 a little earlier would made that difference.

In fact Cube don't outsold Xbox by a big margin in holiday 2003.
Well, I said "might". GameCube and Xbox's worldwide totals ended up being pretty close.

GameCube languished in 2003 after Iwata projected negativity for the GameCube instead of confidence and aggression. I think there was room in 2003 to pick up a few more sales and close the gap on Xbox, and a secondary effect of it's improved prospects could have pushed it over Xbox.

Like for example, in November 2002 Shinji Mikami said that the GameCube wasn't done, we just needed to rally some support for it. C'mon guys, Capcom 5, hype hype hype! In February 2003, Iwata admitted that GameCube really wasn't worth the effort. Mikami rekt.
 
Oct 10, 2010
1,678
2
605
Texas
I enjoyed the read. Didn't have anything to say though.

Yeah, surprised no one really commented on any of all of that. NPDers usually eat it up.
I really appreciate the write up. Super interesting stuff, especially from the older generations.
Thank you, I sincerely appreciate it :)

It was so close, damn it. I'm guessing it was around 99 that N64 started to flat line and PS1 just continued to skyrocket? There was no way Nintendo was going to top 98 in software.
N64 flatlined a little bit in '99 as did PSX but the steady pace of that same '98 ratio between the two kept the LTD gap further widening. Remember the PSOne kept selling after the N64 had faded, adding 8m more, probably the biggest contributor to its wide victory in the end.
 
Sep 4, 2009
7,403
0
0
So hey,

A lot of the garbage in the review thread today has been about how much "tougher" critics are being on games this gen versus last.

What complete bollocks.

Went back and looked at all the quality scores for the prior gen and the current gen.

Overall average review score this gen is 72. Time aligned last gen was 62.

Of course, the Wii pushed most of that. An average Wii U title has averaged a 68. The average Wii title over the same period of time averaged a 57.

But the average PS4 game has a higher review score (75) than the time aligned PS3 (73). And the average Xone game is rated 74 versus 73 on a time aligned basis for the Xbox 360.

When you look at quality distribution across the full sample, also no change with the exception of the reduced release count.

So much unsubstantiated garbage flies around all the time. Review sites are being no tougher now than they were last time.

There's like this celebration of the failure of The Order and praising of review sites for giving low scores.
1. Isn't the fact the 360\PS3 had more releases and the same average as PS4\XB1 means that the 360\PS3 got better MC scores. The more games you have the bigger the chance for the total MC average to go down - but if didn't that means they had to get notably better scores to keep the same average as the consoles that got less games.

2. Was your data only for AAA retail games? Because that's where the reviewers toughened up a bit in my impression. Including Transistor in the PS4 count for example muddies what you can glean from the results you got.

3. Are you including remasters like TLOU and GTA V in the PS4\XB1 calculations? Because obviously i don't need to explain why that isn't conductive to your argument that journalists are as harsh as in last gen.
 
Feb 16, 2010
14,234
0
0
Mars
Adding from that dumb Forbes article:

What nonsense.

Here is the share of games released on disc for MS and Sony consoles and their respective review scores, aggregated by 10 point range:



There's nothing in the game review dataset that suggests a major shift has taken place in how reviewers rate games.

This is just the case of a couple titles releasing in a row to mediocre reviews and that being extrapolated as being some kind of larger trend.

Even Forbes contributors should know better.

1. Isn't the fact the 360\PS3 had more releases and the same average as PS4\XB1 means that the 360\PS3 got better MC scores. The more games you have the bigger the chance for the total MC average to go down - but if didn't that means they had to get notably better scores to keep the same average as the consoles that got less games.
Hmmmm.... in a normalized distribution, the more games only means that the more are spread normally. So, I don't think so. But maybe.

2. Was your data only for AAA retail games? Because that's where the reviewers toughened up a bit in my impression. Including Transistor in the PS4 count for example muddies what you can glean from the results you got.
It was for everything released on a disc.

3. Are you including remasters like TLOU and GTA V in the PS4\XB1 calculations? Because obviously i don't need to explain why that isn't conductive to your argument that journalists are as harsh as in last gen.
Yep, if a game was released on a disc and reviewed, then it's included.

I'm saying that the data suggests that there is no significant difference in the distribution of game ratings between the generations to this point.
 
Aug 25, 2013
24,331
0
0
Adding from that dumb Forbes article:






Hmmmm.... in a normalized distribution, the more games only means that the more are spread normally. So, I don't think so. But maybe.



It was for everything released on a disc.



Yep, if a game was released on a disc and reviewed, then it's included.

I'm saying that the data suggests that there is no significant difference in the distribution of game ratings between the generations to this point.
I believe people are referring to only the games from the AAA publishers (excluding remasters), which means that pulling the entire library is largely meaningless because GTA V, TLoU, Minecraft, Rayman Legends (due to coming out on last gen+Wii U first), etc. aren't the games people are thinking about in this comparison to begin with.
 
Feb 16, 2010
14,234
0
0
Mars
I believe people are referring to only the games from the AAA publishers (excluding remasters), which means that pulling the entire library is largely meaningless because GTA V, TLoU, Minecraft, Rayman Legends (due to coming out on last gen+Wii U first), etc. aren't the games people are thinking about in this comparison to begin with.
hardly meaningless. taking out gta and lou does nothing to the overall trend.

But hey, why let actual data and evidence get in the way. Lets all bask in unsubstantiated opinion.
 
Jun 22, 2011
11,588
0
520
Norway
hardly meaningless. taking out gta and lou does nothing to the overall trend.

But hey, why let actual data and evidence get in the way. Lets all bask in unsubstantiated opinion.
Have you looked at data from late last gen? It's not apples to apples, but nothing will be and I don't think the scores from 06 and 07 are very fresh in people's minds :p
 
Feb 16, 2010
14,234
0
0
Mars
Have you looked at data from late last gen? It's not apples to apples, but nothing will be and I don't think the scores from 06 and 07 are very fresh in people's minds :p
I just quoted the distribution of review scores from 2011 to 2014 so yes. Its all right there.

The low review score for The Order is because the game isnt good, not because reviewers are dong anything differently. It's looking at the symptom, not the disease, and the noise rather than the signal.
 
Jun 22, 2011
11,588
0
520
Norway
I just quoted the distribution of review scores from 2011 to 2014 so yes. Its all right there.

The low review score for The Order is because the game isnt good, not because reviewers are dong anything differently. It's looking at the symptom, not the disease, and the noise rather than the signal.
Ah. Sorry I didn't catch that. Graphing them out 2011 looks like the outlier with a much flatter curve.
 
So hey,

A lot of the garbage in the review thread today has been about how much "tougher" critics are being on games this gen versus last.

What complete bollocks.

Went back and looked at all the quality scores for the prior gen and the current gen.
Seeing as you have the numbers, what's the stats if you just include AAA 1st party games?
 
Mar 20, 2007
20,961
0
0
Well, Xbone has a boost on Amazon hourly chart and overtake a PS4 :

http://www.amazon.com/best-sellers-video-games/zgbs/videogames/ref=zg_bs_nav_0

Any suggestion?
"Suggestion" as in why it's happening?

The Xbox One deal with Wolfenstein -- Wolfenstein is up too. Surprised it's above the PS4 though (even though it's just hourly). Guessing the reception of The Order 1886 doesn't help.

PS4 should still have this month either way though; The hype of The Order 1886 should have helped sales.
 

jn20900

Neo Member
Nov 9, 2013
27
0
0
May 24, 2012
18,812
119
500
Don't let Aqua see

For some reason, Bloomberg has eternally fell prey to the Chartz temptation.

They think Chartz is like...a professional analyst that makes sound projections taking a variety of hard data into account.

What they don't understand is that there is very little "hard data" underlying Chartz...it's all a bunch of capricious algorithms handpicked by Brett with little rhyme or reason.

That's why you see significant discrepancies between Chartz data and NPD / GfK aggregates.
 
Mar 17, 2014
10,387
0
0
Oct 27, 2006
7,996
2
1,005
Feb 24, 2014
14,512
0
370
That's why you see significant discrepancies between Chartz data and NPD / GfK aggregates.
What are you talking about? It's not like VGC has the Xbox One in February of 2014 at 169k, when public data has it at 258k, or they have the 360 over 44 million in just the US.

Nope. Not at all. All within the margin of error.

:)
 

Mpl90

Two copies sold? That's not a bomb guys, stop trolling!!!
Mar 10, 2011
22,885
0
775
28
theflyingthoughtsblog.wordpress.com
Amazon.com, PS4 v.s. One v.s. Wii U (+3DS)

February 24th, 2015 - 22:44 GMT

Xbox One
AC Bundle ($345.00) - 5th
Value Bundle (not available...anymore?) - 184th

Wolfenstein: The New Order
One ($25.51; only 11 left in stock; sold by third party) - 7th
PS4 ($29.99) - 396th

The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D ($39.14) - 10th

PS4 ($399.07) - 13th

Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate ($45.99; in stock on February 28th; sold by third party) - 16th

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare
One ($37.45; sold by third party) - 19th
PS4 ($39.73) - 33rd

Pokémon
Omega Ruby ($33) - 21st
Alpha Sapphire ($38.36) - 61st

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U ($52.99) - 22nd

The Mustaches: 1886 ($59.96) - 23rd

Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS ($38.36) - 27th

Final Fantasy Type-0 HD
PS4 ($59.96) - 28th
One ($59.96) - 366th

Far Cry 4
PS4 ($38.44) - 35th
One ($49.99; only 4 left in stock; sold by third party) - 102nd

Halo: The Master Chief Collection ($38.99; sold by third party) - 39th

NBA 2K15
PS4 ($38.86) - 40th
One ($39.25; in stock on February 25th) - 56th

Kirby & The Rainbow Curse ($39.96) - 41st

Grand Theft Auto V
One ($51.48) - 47th
PS4 ($52.88) - 59th

Dragon Ball Ghost Nappa
PS4 ($59.96) - 48th
One ($59.96) - 69th

Bloodborne
Collectors Edition ($79.96) - 51st
Standard ($59.96) - 82nd

Destiny
PS4 ($39.39; sold by third party) - 68th
One ($44.99; only 2 left in stock; sold by third party) - 134th

Dying Light
PS4 ($59) - 70th
One ($54.85) - 77th

Wii U Super Mario 3D World Bundle ($303; only 3 left in stock; sold by third party) - 71st

Mario Kart 8 ($59.50) - 72nd

Hyrule Warriors ($48.98) - 73rd

FIFA 15
PS4 ($39.99) - 75th
One ($59.96; only 6 left in stock; sold by third party) - 127th

Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor
PS4 ($47.19) - 86th
One ($30.77) - 132nd

Madden NFL 15
One ($39.95) - 87th
PS4 ($39.99) - 103rd

Injustice: God Among Us - Ultimate Edition ($13.79) - 95th

Assassin's Creed Parity
PS4 ($35.99; sold by third paty) - 100th
One ($24.99; sold by third party) - 307th

Other recent releases

Evolve
One ($39.97; only 5 left in stock; sold by third party) - 227th
PS4 ($59.99) - 237th

Dead or Alive 5 last Round
PS4 ($39.96) - 326th
One ($39.96) - 1,693rd

Dynasty Warriors 8: Empires
PS4 ($49.96) - 336th
One ($49.96) - 596th

Possible indicators of how well New 3DS is selling, despite no official representation on Amazon.com?

HORI Duraflexi Clear Protector for New 3DS XL ($12.99) - 25th
Gen USB Charge Cable for 3DS/DSi/DSi XL ($5.19; sold by third party) - 49th
Original Nintendo 3DS XL Power Adapter ($14.99; sold by third party) - 52nd
HORI Screen Protective Filter for New 3DS XL ($19.98; sold by third party) - 67th


Note: This is the hourly chart, the one changing every hour of every day, not the one relative to the whole past week / month / year. While weekly / monthly charts allow us to see how things have been up to now, hourly charts could help us in seeing what could be the incoming sales trends. But Amazon.com charts still need to be filtered and rightfully weigthed, you can't take literally everything they say as the exact truth