USA Retail Sales Preview for April 2011 - NewsVGChartz Staff , posted on 10 May 2011 / 3,616 Views
NPD will be releasing totals for the USA video game market this Thursday at 6:30 PM EST, covering the four weeks ending April 30, 2011. VGChartz figures for the same period are already available. Based on VGChartz data, we expect NPD to report that weekly April hardware and software sales dropped off dramatically from March 2011, even adjusting for the fifth week March had. Nonetheless, with the 3DS and X360 substantially lifting hardware sales over April 2010, the industry did show year over year growth.
Even with the growth over April 2010, the drop off from March is the bigger issue. Revenue per week in the USA video game industry dropped from $294m per week March to $213m per week in April which is not good in the wake of the 3DS launch. Some of the issue is software sales, which were even softer than April 2010 and far weaker than March 2011. The other problem was that hardware sales on a weekly basis dropped off to about 350,000 units per week in April from 450,000 units per week in March. Figures in red are estimates for previous NPD totals.
3DS in particular slowed dramatically from March - falling from 398,000 in week one to an avergae of 71,750 units per week. Wii, PS3, PSP, and X360 each dropped off a bit more to a lot more than you'd expect from going from a five week period to a four week period. For PSP, the price cut appears to have had a limited impact since the device has had less than 20 new games released in 2011 to date. Wii sales were likely impacted a little bit by price cut rumors late in the month, and X360 and PS3 simply dropped off from a dearth in big content. DS also fell quite a bit on a weekly basis with Pokemon Black / White sales slowing from the March 2011 launch.
Software sales in April 2011 were led by Mortal Kombat and Portal 2, but neither title lit up the charts.
Less than 20 games topped 100,000 units in April on a single platform basis. In addition to the new titles for the month, which performed well, if not exceptionally well, the dancing genre continues to bloom.
Portal 2, according to information I've recieved from FADE LLC, has also sold a hell of a lot of units, close to 1 million, on Steam during April, which is part of the reason "brick & mortar" retail software sales are fairly low this month. There are a couple of other notable points this month. For one, this is the second month in a row since launch that a 3DS game has not charted in the top ten. The highest selling 3DS game for April was Super Street Fighter IV: 3D Edition, with sales just under 100,000 units. Mega-publisher EA did not have any top ten hits on the single platform or multi-platform list in April, but several of its titles did sell over 100,000 units on a multi-platform basis. The last big note for the month is Kinect vs. Move sales. Microsoft's Kinect outsold Sony's Move by close to 15:1 this month going by Kinect Adventures and Sports Champions sales in April.
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