Analyst Reactions To November Statistics
Now that the November industry numbers are out - U.S. sales were up 15%, a major improvement over October's miniscule 1% - the analysts have gotten a chance to provide their reactions.
October fell well short of expectations, obviously, but Pacific Crest Securities' Evan Wilson blamed the low numbers on consumers anticipating the console launches in November...and thus, saving their money. "It appears there was a meaningful pause in spending in front of the launch of the PlayStation 3, Wii, and lots of AAA software in November," said Wilson.
While he may have been correct, not many of the top software sales in November were on the new systems. The tie-in ratio (average number of games sold per console) was 2.1 for the Wii and a very low 1.1 for the PS3. Wilson believs this was due to a high number of people purchasing the systems to sell for profit, rather than to use for personal use. However, given the mediocrity of both launches, it's not hard to understand such low tie-in numbers.
Wedbush Morgan Securities' Michael Pachter also mentioned the tie-in ratios, calling them "record lows" for new consoles. Still, he does expect both the Wii and PS3 to have a significant impact on year-over-year sales growth of 7-10% for the month. Much like Wilson, though, he did add the caveat that "the eBay effect" should be suppressed, and Sony and Nintendo need to offer enough machines for retail sale.
For those who did purchase any games with their systems, the best-sellers for the Wii were The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, Red Steel, and Super Monkey Ball: Banana Blitz, in that order. Obviously, Twilight Princess was the biggest seller by a long shot; in fact, 86% of those who bought the Wii also bought that game.
As for the PS3, the listed the top sellers earlier this morning.
12/9/2006 Ben Dutka