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Max Payne 3

NPD May: Xbox Dominates Again, Max Payne 3 a "Flop"

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The NPD Group’s monthly report on US retail sales has been released and, as ever, it’s a treasure trove of interesting stats.

The most significant number is a worrying one, however. With digital sales on the rise and the console generation staggering to an end, overall sales are significantly down.

While console and portable software sales came in at $255.4 million and hardware sales hit $138.9 million, that’s a 32% and 39% fall for each respective category year-on-year. Total sales are down 28% year-on-year, factoring in other categories such as peripherals.

It’s not all bad though. NPD reckon that the figures account for only 50-60% of total consumer spend on gaming, with the rest going to rentals, digitally distributed titles, as well as microtransactions, add-ons, apps and social network games.

Xbox 360 also racked up its 17th straight month as the US’s best-selling console, boasting a 45% share of current-gen sales. Microsoft’s Chief of Staff for Interactive Entertainment Business tweeted, “In US $32B has now been spent at retail on Xbox 360 platform, > any other platform on record ahead of PS2 $30B, Wii $25B #NPD

Sony, meanwhile, claimed “strong results” for Starhawk and MLB12: The Show, as well as “accelerated” growth across PS3 and Vita.

On the software front, although Max Payne 3 managed to snag second place in the month’s best-selling titles (behind PC-exclusive Diablo III), Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter believes it has seriously underperformed.

Speaking on Twitter, Pachter said, “Max Payne 3 a flop, according to NPD; can’t believe Rockstar put off releasing GTA to work on that game.” Pachter receives a more detailed NPD report than the press.

“Without divulging too much NPD goodness, I can tell you that Max Payne 3 sales were less than 50% of LA Noire’s. 8 years in development!” - he added.

The software charts, reproduced in full below, also reveal a strong performance from Ghost Recon: Future Soldier (despite being released towards the end of the month) and Prototype 2, which is proving to have an enduring appeal at retail.

 Full NPD Software Charts - May

  1. Diablo III (PC)
  2. Max Payne 3 (360, PS3, PC)
  3. Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Future Soldier (360, PS3)
  4. Prototype 2 (360, PS3)
  5. NBA 2K12 (360, PS3, Wii, PSP, PS2, PC)
  6. Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (360, PS3, Wii, PC)
  7. Sniper Elite V2 (360, PS3)
  8. Battlefield 3 (360, PS3, PC)
  9. Dragon’s Dogma (360, PS3)
  10. Just Dance 3 (Wii, 360, PS3)


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Game Info
Rockstar Games


US May 15, 2012
Europe May 18, 2012

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