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NPD Sales Results for November 2015 [Up3: Combined Hardware For PS4 + XB1 + Wii U]

Melchiah

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To be fair this is exactly why the deal was always a bad idea. Think about it:


  • SE released the reboot cross platform on PS4, PS3, XB1 and 360 (and PC)
  • More customers bought the game on PS4/PS3 than XB1/360
  • They then make the sequel timed to the smaller install base (XB1/360) basically putting a deal before the majority of their existing customers for the reboot take on the franchise

It's no surprise that effectively punishing the majority of their customers has produced such harsh reactions.

At core, given the install base dynamics of the reboot, the deal just went against 101 basic marketing and PR common sense.

It was a deal that shouldn't have been made and the damage is pretty severe for the franchise as can be seen with absolutely lackluster sales, approx 12 months of recriminations and on-going backlash from their customers, souring of relationship between MS and SE (I believe the hints on this forum in this regard) and likely a tepid launch on PS4 unless SE work very, very hard to show value to their customers on that platform.

Why should PS4/PS3 owners feel anything other than satisfaction at seeing a company that effectively shunned them get what's arguably it's just rewards for failing at one of the most common and general business principles in the digital age (You put your customers first)?


The whole thing would make a perfect case study for a business management and marketing degree course as an example of how to completely fuck up something like this.
Yup. The sad truth is this:

Now that I have to wait 1 year to play it, I'm going to expect it to release as a GOTY edition with all DLC - at the very least, maybe some bonus content. I also expect it to release at no more than $50, preferably $40. And when I say 'expect', I don't mean I necessarily think that will happen, just that there is no way I'd spend $60.

BUT -- [and this is huge] -- since I already waited a year for it, it will be no problem convincing myself to wait even longer [especially since other new, shiny games will be releasing]. If I can wait a year, I can wait another 6 months for it to be in the $10-$15 range [new or used, don't care which].

I doubt I'm alone, and that will definitely hurt sales of the PS4 version.

Agreed. Personally, I was really looking forward to it before the exclusivity announcement, and would have bought it at full price day one. Now, I refuse to pay more for it than I would pay for a year old game, which probably means I won't be buying it at PS4 release date. At this point I've lost most of my interest for the game, and I might actually buy it used, which is something I haven't done since 1998, or just waiting for a possible PS+ release. I can't imagine I'm the only one who's thinking so.
 

Beer Monkey

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Still though, the game is going to do terribly. A year-late port coming out after Uncharted (where most people on PS4 will probably get their fill of this type of game) that's probably coming in the jam-packed 2016 holiday season. Yeah, good luck S-E.

Most of your development costs are sunk at this point so obviously you release it (see the original Bioshock as a good example, Mass Effect 1 for an EXTREME example in terms of the five-year delay). But how do you spend money on marketing next fall for a year-late port that you know is't going to sell well? Which will only make it sell worse.

Can't do anything but root for him. Fighto.

 

Shahed

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Whatever Anthony is saying about Tomb Raider I've read or heard it elsewhere but I can't remember where though. It sounded like such a stupid idea that I dismissed it out of hand
 

Project 2501

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Titanfall/EA/Respawn = Rise of the Tomb Raider/SE/Crystal Dynamics. 3rd party exclusivity is not a good idea any longer. EA and SE are fine, Respawn and Crystal Dynamics...not so much. 2 quality games criminally underplayed due to their publishers. Probably a lesson here. SE certainly didn't learn it.
 

Shahed

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More like crazy aggressive on MS's behalf.
But that's the thing though. It's stupid from Microsoft's point of view as well. There's little benefit to changing a 6 month exclusive to a year one. Openly talking about and accepting pre-orders for PC and PS4 versions of Tomb Raider is a net loss that harms the performance on their platform compared to any minimal gains from an extra 6 months of being on Xbox.

Just like delaying the PS4 version an extra 6 months will harm Square more than accepting pre-orders a few months earlier will. It's stupid all around, just like the supposed decision to fall back on the marketing and bundle efforts. Nobody wins.
 

funkystudent

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Once Square actually announced the release window for the PC and PS4 versions of Rise of the Tomb Raider I was dumb founded.

With these sort of deals companies never do that. EVER. You let the game come out and depending on how long your exclusivity is you announce at pre E3 or Gamescom or something.

The fact the deal with MS let Square do that as well is a bit interesting.



Basically I think everything about the business and marketing for Rise of the Tomb Raider seemed super fucked to make sure that game tanked. Like Square put out a hit on Crystal Dynamics or something.
 

chur

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Does anyone know what was the biggest lead the 360 ever had over the PS3 in WW sales? It's just something I've been wondering for some time now.
 

I-hate-u

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But that's the thing though. It's stupid from Microsoft's point of view as well. There's little benefit to changing a 6 month exclusive to a year one. Openly talking about and accepting pre-orders for PC and PS4 versions of Tomb Raider is a net loss that harms the performance on their platform compared to any minimal gains from an extra 6 months.

Just like delaying the PS4 version an extra 6 months will harm Square more than accepting pre-orders a few months earlier will. It's stupid all around, just like the supposed decision to fall back on the marketing and bundle efforts. No body wins.

I agree to an extent. MS sucked S-E dry with their ROTR deal. Terrible debut numbers, and they can't make it up by releasing the PS4 version sooner. Further more, how likely is Sony even going to promote TR at any of their events next tear?
 

Garlador

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Once Square actually announced the release window for the PC and PS4 versions of Rise of the Tomb Raider I was dumb founded.

With these sort of deals companies never do that. EVER. You let the game come out and depending on how long your exclusivity is you announce at pre E3 or Gamescom or something.

The fact the deal with MS let Square do that as well is a bit interesting.

Basically I think everything about the business and marketing for Rise of the Tomb Raider seemed super fucked to make sure that game tanked. Like Square put out a hit on Crystal Dynamics or something.

The thing is... how many people called it the MOMENT it was announced? How many said it was bad for business, bad for gamers, and bad for the franchise? MONTHS of negativity... hell, it's still going on.

The thing that baffles me is... remember when Capcom took Resident Evil and made it exclusive to Gamecube? Nintendo expected all those millions of Resident Evil fans to buy their new system to play the franchise and Capcom partnered up for that.

Instead, as great as those games are, they were some of the lowest-selling games in the whole franchise. RE fans did NOT boost Gamecube sales; they just sat out and bought spin-offs instead. Resident Evil fans lost, Capcom lost money, and Nintendo never saw any significant boost in their systems. Even RE4 didn't sell well and the PS2 port months later eventually outsold it.

With that history well documented, Square Enix looked at it and said "yeah, let's try it too!"
 

hawk2025

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Even if Bish verifies that this dude is friends with the president of Square Enix himself, I would believe that he misheard this "extended exclusivity deal" before I actually believe it's what happened.

There's misguided deals, and then there's something that makes *negative* sense, like locking a game yet again to a busy holiday period just to put out a press release and nothing else.

Nope, don't buy it. It had to be a year as soon as they signed the original contract.
 

funkystudent

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Does anyone know what was the biggest lead the 360 ever had over the PS3 in WW sales? It's just something I've been wondering for some time now.

Cant for the life of me find a chart that shows it but I am gonna guess around 12 million and probably during 2007.
 

allan-bh

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But that's the thing though. It's stupid from Microsoft's point of view as well. There's little benefit to changing a 6 month exclusive to a year one. Openly talking about and accepting pre-orders for PC and PS4 versions of Tomb Raider is a net loss that harms the performance on their platform compared to any minimal gains from an extra 6 months of being on Xbox.

Just like delaying the PS4 version an extra 6 months will harm Square more than accepting pre-orders a few months earlier will. It's stupid all around, just like the supposed decision to fall back on the marketing and bundle efforts. Nobody wins.

PS4 version 12 months later can attract more people for Xbox One version than 6 months later.

Microsoft would not allow S-E announce other versions without gain something in return.
 
Aug 29, 2013
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Whatever Anthony is saying about Tomb Raider I've read or heard it elsewhere but I can't remember where though. It sounded like such a stupid idea that I dismissed it out of hand

Same here, and if I'm not mistaken I read it on this site somewhere. Maybe it was the same poster though.
 

hawk2025

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PS4 version 12 months later can attract more people for Xbox One version than 6 months later.

Microsoft would not allow S-E announce other versions without gain something in return.

They don't have to gain anything if the announcement was simply tied to pre-order numbers by X date.

There are a multitude of explanations that make more sense than the utter stupidity of tacking on another 6 months to the contract.
 

dabig2

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I agree to an extent. MS sucked S-E dry with their ROTR deal. Terrible debut numbers, and they can't make it up by releasing the PS4 version sooner. Further more, how likely is Sony even going to promote TR at any of their events next tear?

They might give it 10 seconds during their highlight reels showcasing 3rd party support. Maaaaaybe.
 

Shahed

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PS4 version 12 months later can attract more people for Xbox One version than 6 months later.

Microsoft would not allow S-E announce other versions without gain something in return.
Yes in isolation a 12 month exclusive window will attract more people to Xbox than a 6 month one would. But in order to get that extra 6 months thay had to allow the confirmation of releases on other platforms and have pre-orders for PC and PS4 start. Sure 6 more months is nice, but it doesn't offset people actually planning and even putting money down for the game on non-Xbox devices

Yes Microsoft would want something in return hence the extra 6 months. But they'd be better off without it if it meant people couldn't effectively start buying/planning for PC and Playstation versions well before the Xbox version is released. This is all assuming that this is all true though.

I agree to an extent. MS sucked S-E dry with their ROTR deal. Terrible debut numbers, and they can't make it up by releasing the PS4 version sooner. Further more, how likely is Sony even going to promote TR at any of their events next tear?

Sony will have mentions on the Playstation blog and maybe sections in a sizzer reel or montage, but I don't they'll give it any form of spotlight. Not out of spite though. In the end it was a business deal and Sony are no strangers to those. There'll be a lot of newer games from themselves and third parties that will get bulk of the marketing muscle and an older game like Tomb Raider will likely fall by the wayside. No feelings involved just the reality of it.
 

CosmicQueso

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This deal doesn't stink of money, it stinks of the one guy who can sign off on it being offered a cushy MS job.
If i could be arsed i'd prowl linkedin for a while seeing who was recently at SE but is now at MS.
Ok, stinks of money too, but thats not why someone signed off on this.

The dying embers of the NPD thread always features the crazies.

No doubt.

I won't say they cannibalistic packaged but they do fill the space that the low and mid tier once was .
You are going to see less package games because they going to be less AAA games.

Sure.

EDIT don't think we can say there is more demand for more package software .
Not when the big AAA games taking so much more of the pie now .

Erm, but what if more packaged games meant that 1 or 2 more big AAA games existed? That would certainly lead to more packaged sales, would it not?

Thanks for stalking.

Grow up. If you don't want people to reply to you with that, then don't say it yourself, yeah?
 

slavesnyder

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Whatever Anthony is saying about Tomb Raider I've read or heard it elsewhere but I can't remember where though. It sounded like such a stupid idea that I dismissed it out of hand

I am pretty sure I read it on GAF a few months ago, but only as a strange theory.
Getting the right to talk about timed exclusivity vs. 6 even more months of exclusivity sounds absolutely braindead.

Well, we have heard of even more stupid decisions that actually happened, so...
 

gundamkyoukai

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Erm, but what if more packaged games meant that 1 or 2 more big AAA games existed? That would certainly lead to more packaged sales, would it not?

Them existing don't mean people going to buy them in any meaningful numbers .
We going to see less and less package software .
It not going to be worth the ROI for certain games and games moving to a service .
For eg in the future i can see a series like tales coming over here on DD only .
SFV going to have less package versions this gen .

I guess it comes down to if you see less package software sales as a good or a bad thing .
 

Game Guru

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Well, obviously, there are more of them plus a lot more expensive components with even higher markups. Apple hardware revenue is multitudes more than either, but that doesn't mean much without the context.

To be fair, Apple caters to a specific market which is smaller than the market for Windows PCs and the market for Android devices, but... it is a market willing to pay a premium price for Apple products. Hence Apple can make more revenue on a small userbase. In the realm of computers, smartphones, and tablets, Apple is the luxury brand name.
 

Futurematic

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I am pretty sure I read it on GAF a few months ago, but only as a strange theory.

Kagari referred to the deal changing, but wasn't terribly specific IIRC. It was linked and discussed maybe 10 pages (100pp) back? I'm on mobile alas.

Do we have any numbers how much a die shrink saves MS and Sony?

Probably nothing yet. 14/16nm mass production outside Intel is brand new and therefore expensive. Plus the fabs geared to supply Apple and Samsung's mobile SoCs as their first priority.

Given that both MS and Sony would want to save money moving to a new node they are well down in the priority list. That said if we don't have a slim model from Sony by Fall 2016 I'll be very surprised.
 

Chris1

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I am pretty sure I read it on GAF a few months ago, but only as a strange theory.
Getting the right to talk about timed exclusivity vs. 6 even more months of exclusivity sounds absolutely braindead.

Well, we have heard of even more stupid decisions that actually happened, so...

Yeah I think I read it here also, maybe it was Anthony in the past too?

SE got fucked over hard if that's what happened, I can't believe they'd actually accept a deal like that, everyone knew it was coming to PS4 anyways lol. MS made out like a bandit if true.
 

Welfare

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Isn't the Xbox One as big as it is because MS wanted to make sure the units don't get super heated like with the 360? If so they could make a slim revision for just the case.
 

anexanhume

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Isn't the Xbox One as big as it is because MS wanted to make sure the units don't get super heated like with the 360? If so they could make a slim revision for just the case.

Yes. It's got a giant fansink assembly that lets it be pretty quiet, too.
 

CosmicQueso

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Them existing don't mean people going to buy them in any meaningful numbers.

See, I don't agree at all.

If Fallout 4, for example, was delayed into 2016, the sales that Fallout 4 generated in 2015 would not just magically go to other titles.

And if a game like Uncharted 4 was released in 2015, it wouldn't mean that other games in 2015 would sell less. The overall sales pie would grow.

Packaged sales and Packaged release count correlate at a .97 r-squared since 2009. There's a very reasonable cause and effect thing here.

I can't see how this concept is at all controversial.

Wow, .97? I always assumed there was some threshold of purchases for a period. Games are often "sent to die" and we constantly talk about overcrowded release dates, which publishers seem to fear as well.

Well, it's very difficult to take market level trends and apply to individual titles, release dates, or situations.
 

anexanhume

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See, I don't agree at all.

If Fallout 4, for example, was delayed into 2016, the sales that Fallout 4 generated in 2015 would not just magically go to other titles.

And if a game like Uncharted 4 was released in 2015, it wouldn't mean that other games in 2015 would sell less. The overall sales pie would grow.

Packaged sales and Packaged release count correlate at a .97 r-squared since 2009. There's a very reasonable cause and effect thing here.

I can't see how this concept is at all controversial.

Wow, .97? I always assumed there was some threshold of purchases for a period. Games are often "sent to die" and we constantly talk about overcrowded release dates, which publishers seem to fear as well.
 

QaaQer

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I can't see how this concept is at all controversial.

because it is counter intuitive. It's easier to believe that gamers have X number of dollars to spend, and that those dollars are divided by Y number of games. So as Y goes up, average rev goes down: simple, believable, and apparently wrong.
 

gundamkyoukai

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See, I don't agree at all.

If Fallout 4, for example, was delayed into 2016, the sales that Fallout 4 generated in 2015 would not just magically go to other titles.

And if a game like Uncharted 4 was released in 2015, it wouldn't mean that other games in 2015 would sell less. The overall sales pie would grow.

Packaged sales and Packaged release count correlate at a .97 r-squared since 2009. There's a very reasonable cause and effect thing here.

I can't see how this concept is at all controversial.

We are talking about packages sales in the whole .
Take for eg SFV when it comes out there only going to be one version .
So all the packages sales from SSFV etc etc going to be gone .
But that don't mean the industry is doing worst even thought there is less packages sales.
If Tales series only come out on DD would that hurt the industry even thought that would take away from packages sales ?

As i said there being less packages numbers don't mean less sales or it worst for the industry .
Don't know if we are debating the same thing ?
 

slavesnyder

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SE got fucked over hard if that's what happened, I can't believe they'd actually accept a deal like that, everyone knew it was coming to PS4 anyways lol. MS made out like a bandit if true.
A bandit maybe, but if we look at the prey he made...
 

vcc

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The thing is... how many people called it the MOMENT it was announced? How many said it was bad for business, bad for gamers, and bad for the franchise? MONTHS of negativity... hell, it's still going on.

The thing that baffles me is... remember when Capcom took Resident Evil and made it exclusive to Gamecube? Nintendo expected all those millions of Resident Evil fans to buy their new system to play the franchise and Capcom partnered up for that.

Instead, as great as those games are, they were some of the lowest-selling games in the whole franchise. RE fans did NOT boost Gamecube sales; they just sat out and bought spin-offs instead. Resident Evil fans lost, Capcom lost money, and Nintendo never saw any significant boost in their systems. Even RE4 didn't sell well and the PS2 port months later eventually outsold it.

With that history well documented, Square Enix looked at it and said "yeah, let's try it too!"

I think only very specific games will prompt many people to pick up a console for it. Generally need more reasons than one game.

The only exceptions are games with rabid fan bases.
 

anexanhume

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Well, it's very difficult to take market level trends and apply to individual titles, release dates, or situations.

So you're saying there's no good way to know if publishers are being smart or overly cautious with their release dates? Either they understand the market and only release titles when they know they'll sell, or they're needlessly delaying games. Obviously you'd expect the answer to be somewhere in between, but the cod makes me curious.
 

vcc

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Yeah I think I read it here also, maybe it was Anthony in the past too?

SE got fucked over hard if that's what happened, I can't believe they'd actually accept a deal like that, everyone knew it was coming to PS4 anyways lol. MS made out like a bandit if true.

Might be extreme risk aversion. SE has had financial issues and AAA are huge risks. They might have inadvertently sold out Tomb Raiders long term viability to mitigate short term risks.
 

kinoki

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So, if we consider a good digital to physical ratio Tomb Raider is currently sitting at somewhere 500k world wide, right? (I'm actually looking at that number for all of 2015.)

So, with PC and PS4 in 2016 it might hope to cross 1m world wide sometime next year if they're really lucky. That some underwhelming shit. :(
 

gundamkyoukai

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So, if we consider a good digital to physical ratio Tomb Raider is currently sitting at somewhere 500k world wide, right? (I'm actually looking at that number for all of 2015.)

So, with PC and PS4 in 2016 it might hope to cross 1m world wide sometime next year if they're really lucky. That some underwhelming shit. :(

It will do more than that just at a low ASP .
 

vcc

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So, if we consider a good digital to physical ratio Tomb Raider is currently sitting at somewhere 500k world wide, right? (I'm actually looking at that number for all of 2015.)

So, with PC and PS4 in 2016 it might hope to cross 1m world wide sometime next year if they're really lucky. That some underwhelming shit. :(

1.5 digital :1 retail? Wouldn't a great digital to retail be more like 0.4:1? 1.5:1 would be unheard of.
 

joecanada

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1.5 digital :1 retail? Wouldn't a great digital to retail be more like 0.4:1? 1.5:1 would be unheard of.

didn't EA just say it was closing on about 30 percent.??.. As per usual there is zero reason to think this game would attract more than average online purchases....

except halo at 9:1 of course...
 

lightning2k3

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didn't EA just say it was closing on about 30 percent.??.. As per usual there is zero reason to think this game would attract more than average online purchases....

except halo at 9:1 of course...

Halo is somewhere around 33:67 digital to physical iirc.
 

kinoki

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1.5 digital :1 retail? Wouldn't a great digital to retail be more like 0.4:1? 1.5:1 would be unheard of.

World wide. Not just NA. Would 500k be unreasonable for all versions in 2015? Is 1m a low estimate for 2016 with both other versions included? (1.2? 1.5?)
 
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didn't EA just say it was closing on about 30 percent.??.. As per usual there is zero reason to think this game would attract more than average online purchases....

except halo at 9:1 of course...

EA's latest report had digital attach rate for their AAA console games at 20%. They expect it to go up to 40% in 3-4 years, but for now 20% is about where console games sit at.
 

Mendax

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World wide. Not just NA. Would 500k be unreasonable for all versions in 2015? Is 1m a low estimate for 2016 with both other versions included? (1.2? 1.5?)

I think one of you two doesn't understand how ratios work but I can't tell who
 

CosmicQueso

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Don't know if we are debating the same thing ?

It appears we are not.

So you're saying there's no good way to know if publishers are being smart or overly cautious with their release dates? Either they understand the market and only release titles when they know they'll sell, or they're needlessly delaying games. Obviously you'd expect the answer to be somewhere in between, but the cod makes me curious.

There's a lot here. Slate planning is a combination of budget and development resources being available, estimating how long a project might be in development, and then determining when the best time to release that product might be. If you need Studio A to make a game for you, but Studio A already has a project and cannot start working on your game until January, 2016, and your game will take about 3 years to make, well, you have your release date, Q1 or later in 2019. (It really is this simple, by the way.)

If you absolutely have to hit a date, "we need a game to go with this movie" then you outsource to the best available studio you can find that promises to get the game done in that time.

And delaying a game from its original release date is very costly on so many levels that doing it is usually a last resort driven by development.

What do you mean by "but the cod makes me curious?"
 

anexanhume

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Apr 2, 2013
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It appears we are not.



There's a lot here. Slate planning is a combination of budget and development resources being available, estimating how long a project might be in development, and then determining when the best time to release that product might be. If you need Studio A to make a game for you, but Studio A already has a project and cannot start working on your game until January, 2016, and your game will take about 3 years to make, well, you have your release date, Q1 or later in 2019.

If you absolutely have to hit a date, "we need a game to go with this movie" then you outsource to the best available studio you can find that promises to get the game done in that time.

And delaying a game from its original release date is very costly on so many levels that doing it is usually a last resort driven by development.

What do you mean by "but the cod makes me curious?"

The r^2 (coeff of determination). It's basically saying that title sales directly correlate to number of releases, but it seems there may be a gray area as to whether companies time their releases well or have no idea what's going on. It was only a few years ago that virtually every AAA blockbuster released in Fall, then people started departing from that schedule with examples like ME2 in January.