NPD Sales Results for November 2013 [Up3: Zelda, Pokemon, Mario, 3DS, Wii U]

Jul 17, 2013
12,888
0
0
Seattle
The real question is why didn't Respawn include a multiplatform clause or whatever on their contract with EA? Did they just assume EA wouldn't sell their game to Microsoft?
Probably, yes. Exclusive deals on games being developed with PC as the lead platform are pretty uncommon these days. They most likely assumed that EA would want the game on as many platforms as possible to generate the maximum profit, just like basically everyone else assumes.

The question is what/how much Microsoft actually offered them. Not knowing that, we can't really say with any authority whether EA did something profoundly stupid, or whether they were made such an amazing offer they would have been stupid not to take it.
 
I am not worried about more exclusives, they can do what they want. But new deal require new contract or at least rework the old contract, so i was just guessing that they have reworked new terms for giving EA more exclusive distribution over their future games.
Oh sorry, I was probably confusing.

That thing I linked is from when the studio was first formed.

Why did Respawn do this to themselves? After what happened with Activision, you would think they won't do those kind contracts, locking themselves to only one publisher.
I get the impression EA is largely signing them blank checks in trade for publishing their games with the stipulation that they can make the moves they feel necessary to maximize profitability.

To be entirely honest, between Vince's and Frank Gibeau's (EA) statements, I get the impression that Respawn wanted the timed exclusive deal because they felt it would help launch their brand and EA agreed to it, but then EA extended it into full exclusivity because it got them a better deal.

Like Vince here says: https://twitter.com/VinceZampella/status/395325209521029120

"Always MS exclusive at launch, great partner and focus is good for a startup. EA made a deal for the rest, we only found out recently =("
^This sounds like they wanted the timed exclusive.

And here Frank Gibeau says: http://www.computerandvideogames.co...-frank-gibeau-on-next-gen-and-new-franchises/

"The Sony platform and the Xbox platform are both very important to us. If you look at the previous generation we did tactical deals with both Sony and Microsoft throughout the cycle. Titanfall is different, it's an EA Partners game - everything else is platform agnostic."
^This sounds like TitanFall is only an exclusive because it's EA Partners, which implies that their partner (Respawn) had some say in setting this deal up in the first place, whereas the studios they totally own are all multiplatform.
 
Mar 26, 2013
15,673
3
0
I get the impression EA is largely signing them blank checks in trade for publishing their games with the stipulation that they can make the moves they feel necessary to maximize profitability.

To be entirely honest, between Vince's and Frank Gibeau's (EA) statements, I get the impression that Respawn wanted the timed exclusive deal because they felt it would help launch their brand and EA agreed to it, but then EA extended it into full exclusivity because it got them a better deal.

Like Vince here says: https://twitter.com/VinceZampella/status/395325209521029120



^This sounds like they wanted the timed exclusive.

And here Frank Gibeau says: http://www.computerandvideogames.co...-frank-gibeau-on-next-gen-and-new-franchises/



^This sounds like TitanFall is only an exclusive because it's EA Partners, which implies that their partner (Respawn) had some say in setting this deal up in the first place, whereas the studios they totally own are all multiplatform.
I'm not talking about exclusivity part, Respawn is new studio and it's expected that they don't have much to say about their game and I think the advertising coming from MS/EA in exchange exclusivity is really good deal for new IP. What I'm talking about is locking their future games, after what happened with Activision you would think that they won't agree with not having control over their next future games. You said there's maybe a stipulation in which they can make the moves they feel necessary to maximize profitability, however right in their first game Titanfall, they didn't couldn't control whether the game will timed or parma exclusive, and I'm not sure they get a cut from the money MS gave to EA.
 
I'm not talking about exclusivity part, Respawn is new studio and it's expected that they don't have much to say about their game and I think the advertising coming from MS/EA in exchange exclusivity is really good deal for new IP. What I'm talking about is locking their future games, after what happened with Activision you would think that they won't agree with not having control over their next future games. You said there's maybe a stipulation in which they can make the moves they feel necessary to maximize profitability, however right in their first game Titanfall, they didn't couldn't control whether the game will timed or parma exclusive, and I'm not sure they get a cut from the money MS gave to EA.
The core issue is that basically they wanted control of the IP.

What this allows them to do is have guaranteed creative autonomy and also have a lot more control over things like release dates or when they want to move on to different IPs and not have to worry about someone else making bad games with their old brand in the mean time. It also tends to mean notably better royalty rates.

However, the publisher needs something in return for giving them this kind of set up, so what they get is the right to publish a bunch of games so they can actually get some extended value out of investing in a brand (or brands) they don't own.

This is the same reason Bungie has a 10 year deal with Activision, since it's structured in a way that wouldn't result in them being raked over the coals like Infinity Ward was, under the stipulation they're releasing a bunch of games for Activision to publish.

For the Microsoft money, Respawn would presumably not get it directly, but rather through their royalty, as Microsoft presumably either gave a lot of marketing money (which increases game sales) and/or dropped their licensing fee (which increases money earned per unit sold notably).
 
Oct 23, 2013
328
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0
Oh sorry, I was probably confusing.

That thing I linked is from when the studio was first formed.



I get the impression EA is largely signing them blank checks in trade for publishing their games with the stipulation that they can make the moves they feel necessary to maximize profitability.

To be entirely honest, between Vince's and Frank Gibeau's (EA) statements, I get the impression that Respawn wanted the timed exclusive deal because they felt it would help launch their brand and EA agreed to it, but then EA extended it into full exclusivity because it got them a better deal.

Like Vince here says: https://twitter.com/VinceZampella/status/395325209521029120



^This sounds like they wanted the timed exclusive.

And here Frank Gibeau says: http://www.computerandvideogames.co...-frank-gibeau-on-next-gen-and-new-franchises/



^This sounds like TitanFall is only an exclusive because it's EA Partners, which implies that their partner (Respawn) had some say in setting this deal up in the first place, whereas the studios they totally own are all multiplatform.
I thought I heard something along the lines that Activision was suing Respawn for something after they jumped ship, and MS came in and gave enough money to Respawn to allow them to get past that and the exclusivity was a result of that. Is there any truth to this?
 
I thought I heard something along the lines that Activision was suing Respawn for something after they jumped ship, and MS came in and gave enough money to Respawn to allow them to get past that and the exclusivity was a result of that. Is there any truth to this?
Well EA provided all the seed capital for the studio in addition to funding the games, so I would be surprised if EA wasn't supporting all their needs.

I'd assume it was actually due to Microsoft launching Halo and Gears of War to astronomical numbers at the beginning of the console gen, and also helping to really grow Call of Duty with the Xbox 360 launch.

Peter Moore implied that he was impressed with what Microsoft had done in the past in terms of launching shooters and Vince Zampella was talking up how well they did with CoD2 as well.

I mean Microsoft really has a phenomenal track record launching major multiplayer FPS games and it's really hard to launch new IPs these days. Having Microsoft launch your series and then going multiplat isn't exactly the worst strategy for a game like this.

I'd note that the one other game they signed up like this (explicitly timed) is Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare, which is also a multiplayer shooter.

If EA had signed up someone that made like a highly cinematic linear shooter based hugely around story, they might have went to Sony instead.
 
I thought I heard something along the lines that Activision was suing Respawn for something after they jumped ship, and MS came in and gave enough money to Respawn to allow them to get past that and the exclusivity was a result of that. Is there any truth to this?
According to this, it was settled. Looks like Activision had to pay them something.
 
Mar 26, 2013
15,673
3
0
The core issue is that basically they wanted control of the IP.

What this allows them to do is have guaranteed creative autonomy and also have a lot more control over things like release dates or when they want to move on to different IPs and not have to worry about someone else making bad games with their old brand in the mean time. It also tends to mean notably better royalty rates.

However, the publisher needs something in return for giving them this kind of set up, so what they get is the right to publish a bunch of games so they can actually get some extended value out of investing in a brand (or brands) they don't own.

This is the same reason Bungie has a 10 year deal with Activision, since it's structured in a way that wouldn't result in them being raked over the coals like Infinity Ward was, under the stipulation they're releasing a bunch of games for Activision to publish.

For the Microsoft money, Respawn would presumably not get it directly, but rather through their royalty, as Microsoft presumably either gave a lot of marketing money (which increases game sales) and/or dropped their licensing fee (which increases money earned per unit sold notably).
Thanks for the explanation. I guess big publisher all think alike, so wherever Respawn go, they won't get a better deal/contract.
 
Thanks for the explanation. I guess big publisher all think alike, so wherever Respawn go, they won't get a better deal/contract.
On that note I believe Take-Two has a similar contract with Gearbox, given that Gearbox owns the Borderlands IP, but Take-Two is even credited on TellTale's Borderlands game despite the fact that TellTale is publishing it.

But yeah, I believe EA, Take-Two, Activision, and Microsoft are the only major publishers who actually are even comfortable setting up deals where the developer owns the IP. Well, I guess that depends how we count Namco, who sort of does it, but they're kind of small.
 
Sep 9, 2013
1,425
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340
Thanks for the explanation. I guess big publisher all think alike, so wherever Respawn go, they won't get a better deal/contract.
It's better than their situation at IW. At least if they get screwed over this time they can take Titanfall with them when they leave. When they left IW, Activision got to keep CoD.
 
Oct 31, 2012
1,792
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405
And there's not an indication that this is going to actually matter yet--if you have all of the above, but are dealing with a 60-35-5 market split, all the PR in the world won't matter because it'll still sell better on the market leading platform.
History tells us that's not true. Not all multiplatform games sell I proportion with their compared user bases. Some PS3 games even sold better than their 360 counterparts and other franchises that were perceived as "360 franchises" sold much more than 2-1 on 360.
 

Oblivion

Fetishing muscular manly men in skintight hosery
Jul 17, 2005
42,029
2
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I'd just like to say that I didn't see any Wii-Us on the shelves for like 3 weeks in November. You would think that would mean it would sell a tad better than 200k units.

Or is that partly due to retailers not ordering very many to begin with?
 
Apr 27, 2011
5,243
2
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I'd just like to say that I didn't see any Wii-Us on the shelves for like 3 weeks in November. You would think that would mean it would sell a tad better than 200k units.

Or is that partly due to retailers not ordering very many to begin with?
Many retailers had stock going back to the system launch until very recently, of course they weren't going to order more in bulk. The BX on my base still had 8GB models until a week or so ago despite being sold on discount.
 
Jun 10, 2004
26,711
1
1,495
I'd just like to say that I didn't see any Wii-Us on the shelves for like 3 weeks in November. You would think that would mean it would sell a tad better than 200k units.

Or is that partly due to retailers not ordering very many to begin with?
I think you know which scenario is more likely.
 
Mar 7, 2007
4,612
4
895
I'd just like to say that I didn't see any Wii-Us on the shelves for like 3 weeks in November. You would think that would mean it would sell a tad better than 200k units.

Or is that partly due to retailers not ordering very many to begin with?
Anecdotal evidence for now suggest the current selling rate of the Wii U after black friday week is lower than all last-gen and new-gen systems. However, the selling rate didn't return to the levels of the weeks prior to black friday week. It probably halved or so. My estimations for the black friday week sales (for a total 220k for the month of november) were around 140k or so. I suspect the Wii U in the week after to have sold something around 70k.

No idea how is much is going to sell in the month of december. We have to take into account the system to increase exponentially (with a low-valued exponent anyway) during the next weeks prior to Christmas. I suspect the bare minimum being 300k. Probably 400k is a sensitive answer. More than that is unlikely though.
 
Feb 27, 2008
1,072
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Yep, I imagine what took place with the EA and MS deal is something that doesn't somehow violate EA's initial contract with Respawn, as I can't imagine EA doing that knowingly.
Exactly. If the rights to shop the game exclusively to Microsoft weren't obvious from the terms of the contract, EA would most definitely consult their lawyers before taking such an action.

I also find the evidence that Respawn had no knowledge of the agreement between EA and Microsoft to be dubious. I think Zampella is happy to let Sony fans blame EA entirely for this. Perhaps it's not what they wanted explicitly, but if they really cared about having the ability to put the game on every platform they wanted, they would have negotiated that right into the contract. The possibility that their game might be shopped as an exclusive was surely contemplated when they formed the contract (unless their lawyers were incompetent).

In reality, there's probably a profit-sharing aspect to the deal and Respawn will see a healthy cut of whatever fee EA extracted from Microsoft. They went with EA because they expected that EA would help them make the most money on their games.
 
Nov 18, 2009
9,206
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Sugar Land, TX
twitter.com
Game prices are what turns parents off. $99-$149 is already prime price point for hardware. I don't know what Nintendo can do about game prices while still remaining viable.
Time to bring back greatest hits or whatever. Offer games like AC, Mario Kart, and maybe Pokemon at $20. Still a premium compared to phone games, but there's more quality to those titles. Plus its more reasonable w/ $100 hardware.
 
Mar 14, 2009
16,828
1
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Why did Respawn do this to themselves? After what happened with Activision, you would think they won't do those kind contracts, locking themselves to only one publisher.
Because they want to make big, expensive games.

People don't just hand you tens of millions of dollars to develop and market a game with no caveats attached.

Do you want to make any game you want? Fine, no problem, but expect to get no financial support. Indies do this.

Do you want to make a huge, blockbuster game? Fine, you can do that too. But the guy handing you millions of dollars gets to have a lot of say in how you make that game.

You can't have it both ways, unless you want to spend your own dang money on the game and just so happen to have tens of millions to put in to it.
 
May 24, 2012
18,812
119
500
I think it's fair to say it's over for Vita.
75K is beyond abysmal...only dead consoles achieve that kind of status.

The PSP managed 200K < PSP < 250K in November 2011. It wasn't until November 2012---nearly 8 years after the PSP released in the USA---that it managed a November lower than the Vita's 75K. Meanwhile, the Vita hit such lows as early as its 2nd November.
 
Jun 7, 2004
123,719
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75K is beyond abysmal...only dead consoles achieve that kind of status.

The PSP managed 200K < PSP < 250K in November 2011. It wasn't until November 2012---nearly 8 years after the PSP released in the USA---that it managed a November lower than the Vita's 75K. Meanwhile, the Vita hit such lows as early as its 2nd November.
Is PSP even still widely available? I wonder if that's the only thing keeping it from outselling the Vita.
 
Sep 15, 2006
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Well. This guarantees zero support even from Sony first party. Might as well end the production of it Sony. It won't be used.
Lol. You guys are so quick to kill everything.

1. The camera was heavily constrained. I couldn't find one anywhere even if I wanted one.

2. It's an accessory, they don't need a 100% attach rate to be profitable selling them. 10% is fine for a $60 accessory.

3. As for support. Good. This means Microsoft's plan will backfire. Greater than half the consoles on the market won't have a camera. Multiplat devs won't waste a ton of time designing Kinect features. Mission accomplished.
 
Apr 27, 2013
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Well. This guarantees zero support even from Sony first party. Might as well end the production of it Sony. It won't be used.
No, It's not. As soon as the price of the hardware in PS4 comes down enough, It's gonna be bundled with every PS4 regardless.

Also, we don't know how many Cameras shipped. 130K sounds like a solid number. Especially when more features, functionality, voice commands, & apps are coming in the future.