Welcome to this week’s edition of “A Sales History.” This week we will be taking a look at the sales history of the Gears of War franchise developed by Epic. Last week we looked at sales history of God of War and the week before that Grand Theft Auto. If there is a particular franchise (no matter how obscure) you want to see the sales history for, requests are always welcome.
The Gears of War franchise is a third person shooter that is currently a Microsoft exclusive. The three games in the series have all been released on the Xbox 360. It is also the second biggest Xbox franchise, behind only Halo.
As you can see from the graph above, the Gears of War franchise has seen steady sales. The numbers are total sales and Gears of War 3 has only been out for 31 week, compared to two and a half and four and a half years for the other games. To see sales for the equal time frames look below. Gears of War 2 has sold more than 500,000 units than the original game, which does show that the franchise has grown in popularity from the first to the second game.
In the chart above, the Gears of War franchise has achieved lifetime to date sales of 17.77 million. Gears of War 3 is currently selling more than the previous two games. It sold 11,025 in the most recent week, while Gears of War sold 1,551 and Gears of War 2 sold 3,307. If it continues to outsell the first game on an average of 10,000 units a week, it will take about a year for it to outsell it. Likewise if it outsells the second game on average of 8,000 units a week, it will take nearly three years to outsell it. With the current generation in its twilight years, it is unlikely Gears of War 3 will outsell Gears of War 2, however it will most likely outsell the first game by the time it stops selling.
Looking at the weekly sales of the three games shows a distinct pattern. Each game in the first game outsold the previous game. Gears of War sold 607,265 in its first week. Gears of War 2 outsold the first by three times in its first week, with sales of 1,868,440. Gears of War 3 first week sales outsold the previous game by 60 percent, with sales of 3,020,354.
The gap between the three games has shrunk since their opening week, meaning that the games get more frontloaded which is in line with the increased user base of the Xbox 360. To make clear however the first two games were released in November, while Gears of War 3 was released in September. This explains the drop in sales from week five to nine and why the sales almost drop below Gears of War 2.
Gears of War 3 has sold 5,361,914 units to date, which is 31 weeks. Gears of War 2 sold 4,793,422 in its first 31 weeks and Gears of War sold 3,934,198 units. It took Gears of War 117 weeks to reach the same number of units sold and Gears of War 2 exactly twice as long, 62 weeks.
Predictions for Future Releases
There is currently no other Gears of War game announced; however with Gears of War 3 just released last September and each game in the series released two years apart, another game won’t be released until Holiday 2013 at the earliest. Current rumors put the release of the next generation Xbox during the same time frame, so it could mean it will be a launch title. If that is true, it would mean opening week sales ranging from 200,000 to 300,000 depending upon how many consoles Microsoft is able to ship. Lifetime sales should be in line with the rest of the franchise, again it depends on how well the console sells.
Epic could decide to wait until there are more consoles sold like with the first Gears of War which was released in the Xbox 360’s second holiday. There were 5.38 million Xbox 360’s sold at the time it was released. If the next Gears of War game is released one year after the next generation releases, opening week sales of the game should be more in line with the original Gears of War.
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