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Forums - Sales Discussion - August NPD 2020: Switch 504k, PS4 197k, XBO 45k

Shadow1980 said:
RolStoppable said:

@Shadow1980 

Given how long your post is, it's difficult to remember all things you touched on, but here are a few things that bother me in your analysis.

1. The way you determine the impact of key software on hardware sales. You look only at the surface (month 1 and 2), but don't consider a stacked effect because that one is invisible with your methodology. Software sells hardware, and the continued consistent release of new interesting software boosts the baseline any given console can have. You acknowledge that a lot of consumers buy old key software along with their initial purchase of the hardware, but don't make the connection that the old software still drives hardware sales despite regular appearances in NPD's monthly top 20 software list. A prolonged bump on hardware sales doesn't show up in the data like an immediate bump with a visible spike, but it should be clear nonetheless that old games still move hardware when they keep charting high in the list of best-selling software.

Software sells hardware, but not in the way you think. Having a good library is essential for the health of a system, but we're talking about sales growth here, and simply having a good lineup in a given year does not mean sales will grow. The PS4 managed to have remarkably flat sales in the U.S. For the entire Q1-Q3 period for its first four years, PS4 sales had a relatively narrow range of about 2.2M to 2.5M. The same period in 2018 got up to 2.7M thanks to just three games (more on this in a second). Overall, this is the flattest generation to date. Overall, this has been the "flattest" generation ever for PS & Xbox in the U.S., with probably the least pronounced peaks of any system ever. If strong lineups and growing libraries of quality content are supposed to enhance baseline sales, then why was the PS4 so flat over time?

Now, individual games can and sometimes do have a measurable impact on sales, but that's rare for the U.S. (again, mainly because NPD's monthly tracking can mask the effects of modest system-sellers), and when they do have an effect it's in the form of an obvious spike in their release month, with the rare residual effect in the following month, and never in the form of an increased baseline over many months. 2018 saw total sales across Q1-Q3 go up about 200k from 2017. Why? Because of the combined effects of God of War and Spider-Man, which cause a clear bump in sales in their release months of April and September. Take those two months out of the equation, and 2018 is very slightly down from 2017 for the Q1-Q3 period. And even with those games, we're talking 8% growth for the Q1-Q3 period.

You know what does have a tendency to cause significant sales growth for a period of many months? Price cuts and hardware revisions. The PS2 didn't see any upwards trend in sales in the U.S. prior to May 2002, but when it was cut from $300 to $200 that month, it experienced a period of significant growth over the following 12 months, with its best level of sales by far. The PS3 was languishing with a terrible baseline in 2007 until it finally got a price reduction to $400, and it wouldn't experience any further growth until the release of the Slim, which was near-concurrent with the price cut to $300 the month prior. And those are just two examples.

As for your objections to my methodology of estimating the impacts of individual games on hardware sales, well, I invite you to come up with something better. I think my method is sound. Take my example of Destiny. The PS4 had a remarkably stable baseline that averaged just under 50k units per week from April through August of 2014. Destiny is released and suddenly sales jump up to nearly 108k/week, more than double the baseline that had existed over the previous five months, and October averaged 74k/week. It's reasonable to assume that, since there were no other stimulative factors at play besides Destiny, the PS4's baseline would have remained at or slightly below 50k/week. There is no reason to think it would have been significantly above or below that, so had Destiny not been a thing it's likely the PS4 would have sold 425-450k for the September-October. It instead sold 835k. That pegs the amount of surplus hardware Destiny sold at around 385-410k units.

While it's not an exact science, and when dealing with other complications like price cuts it becomes less reliable, this method can give us an idea of the typical effects of individual games on hardware sales. And there's never been a single case in any point in the past 20 years where we see a single game A) clearly pushing well over a million surplus hardware units and B) causing a marked improvement in baseline sales.

2. The way you use the PS4 and XB1 to determine the magnitude of the COVID bump. You wrote a novel and got to the point that the PS4's June and July sales were still higher than they should have normally been, then concluded it has to be COVID that is responsible for those numbers. But The Last of Us Part II and Ghost of Tsushima released during those months along with a bundles. Surely, that's something you should consider because any time a big title releases for a console, it is accompanied by increased advertising for said console and advertisement works, hence why companies keep paying for it. More awareness of a product raises the chances to sell said product. There's no good reason to sit there and act as if Sony's first party games and marketing had no positive impact on PS4 sales.

The first TLOU game wasn't a system-seller. Uncharted 4 looks to have caused at best a very minor increase in the month it was released. Naughty Dog games in general appear to have negligible impacts on hardware sales in the U.S. Ghost of Tsushima? When was the last time you saw a Sucker Punch title cause a big spike in hardware sales?

Also, why was August so big? Don't say "Madden," because we've never seen it push tens of thousands of surplus units before. There has been only four times August has ever been up substantially from July for either Xbox or PlayStation, and it was because of other reasons: the release of the Xbox One S in 2013,  the 360's first price cut in 2007, and the PS3 getting reduced to $300 in 2009 and to $250 in 2011. Popular as the annualized football game series may be, Madden's impact on hardware sales is practically nil.

Again, not every major software title is a big enough system-seller to have any noticeable impact on hardware sales.

You want to know what a real late-life system-seller was? Grand Theft Auto V. You couldn't ask for a bigger game than that. And while it caused a relatively big month-over-month jump for the PS3, that produced only a tiny YoY increase because of the big YoY drop in previous months. GTAV also gave the 360 a modest month-over-month boost (the following month was even bigger for the 360 because of reduced-price holiday bundles issued that October). Yet total PS3+360 sales in September 2013 were only about the same as combined PS4+XBO sales from this past May, and only about 27% higher than combined PS4+XBO sales from August, and that's with the XBO being supply constrained.

Prior to March, the PS4 & XBO were doing considerably worse than the 360 & PS3 were at the same point ahead of the start of this generation, but now they're doing considerably better than the PS3 & 360:

In fact, it we match up just the PS4 & 360 (the top conventional systems of their eras), we see essentially the same thing:

When we "reverse align" to the months their successors were released, combined PS4 & XBO sales had been consistently behind combined PS3 & XBO sales since June 2018, but that's no longer the case. The PS4 has, for the past several years at least, clearly been performing nowhere near the level of the 360 in the U.S. prior to this past March, but now it's suddenly doing better than the 360 in the final months before their respective replacements were released.

Clearly, something else is going on here besides just TLOU2 and Ghost of Tsushima, games from series/publishers that aren't known for being/making huge system-sellers. Why would the PS4 & XBO be doing substantially worse than their last-gen counterparts in their twilight months, then suddenly have a huge turnaround following a big spike in early to mid spring that was obviously caused by COVID? The only plausible explanation for this "last minute second wind" is that the pandemic & stimulus are having a strong residual effect keeping the baseline much higher than it otherwise would have been. Had there been no pandemic, the PS4 & XBO would have had a far worse 2020, even over the summer months.

RolStoppable said:

3. The video game industry is dominated by big budget games targeted at males. This is very important to remember, because it means sales trends have high consistency. However, on the flipside it means that the typical analytical models won't work as well when you are dealing with a game that bucks the trend. Animal Crossing has an enormous female audience and is therefore able to sell to a part of the population that isn't the typical console gamer. Switch had all the typical big guns in Super Mario, Mario Kart, Zelda, Pokémon and Super Smash Bros., but the tipping point to finally buy the hardware is Animal Crossing for many females. Your entire analysis hinges on there not being anything special about Animal Crossing, hence why it is inexplicable to you how AC could be such a big incentive to purchase Switch hardware. But there is a factor you have not considered at all.

New Leaf had a majority female audience, too. It didn't cause a massive explosion of 3DS sales far beyond anything else on the system (maybe 100k or so surplus units in the U.S., and a 90k jump from the week prior to its release in Japan, and that's with a limited edition New Leaf-themed XL to aid it). So AC has more females buy it than most games? So what? Fewer males buy it relative to other popular games. It balances out. Just because AC is popular with females doesn't mean New Horizons is somehow uniquely capable of pushing upwards of 2 million surplus hardware units in the U.S. when the best confirmed record system-seller moved around 400k surplus units.

RolStoppable said:

Lastly, a related point that has nothing to do with COVID, but your original assumption that Switch had probably peaked in 2019. I'll use this as a means to explain why your approach to analyses goes off course in some instances. You based your assumption on sales trends of previous Nintendo consoles and all of the recorded ones in NPD history (so Nintendo 64 onwards, because there was no NPD before 1995) showed that it's only down after year 3, except for the DS. I know it's easy to disregard the DS as an anomaly in a dataset like that, but if you had thought about why the DS was different, you could have figured that Switch would follow the DS. The DS was different because it had more robust third party support than any other recorded Nintendo console, so the consistent arrival of new interesting releases kept sales high. This is how it works for all consoles, hence why the PS Vita flopped so hard in comparison to all other PS consoles.

All Nintendo handhelds have had strong third-party support. The DS was no different. It drew in a non-trivial amount of casuals to be sure, but third-party games writ large were not popular enough to explain the DS's success. The best-sellers list on every Nintendo handheld was utterly dominated by first-party titles, just as the best-sellers list on their home consoles has been dominated by first-party games ever since the N64. The number of DS titles that sold more than 2M copies worldwide can literally fit in your hand, with the case, and that's on an install base of over 150M. Only five third-party games on the Switch have passed 1M copies, and only two of those (Octopath Traveler and Minecraft) have passed that milestone by any comfortable amount. People aren't lining up to buy Nintendo systems for third-party games. They buy Nintendo systems to play Nintendo games.

Most of the rest of your point was addressed earlier.

scottslater said:
Meanwhile from the last Nintendo reporting...

The number of consumers who started playing on Nintendo Switch because of this
game continued to increase during the first quarter, from April to June 2020. Of all
systems in the Nintendo Switch family that were played for the first time during
this period, over half were used to play Animal Crossing: New Horizons on the first
day.

https://www.nintendo.co.jp/ir/pdf/2020/200806_2e.pdf

I saw that posted in the July thread and ignored it because it didn't say what the poster thought it said (plus he was a new user who went AWOL two weeks ago, so there's no telling if he'd even see my replay). But since this is the second time it's been brought up, I'll deal with it.

It's very intriguing information, but I don't believe that it's the silver bullet argument that proves that AC was the primary driver behind the increase in Switch sales seen over the April-July period. It definitely does prove that AC is a popular game. And more importantly it proves that a lot of new Switch owners also bought a copy of AC to go with it. But note that it does not actually mention anything about AC causing significant YoY hardware growth. Having a good attach rate for new sales is not the same as actually increasing hardware sales beyond what they would be otherwise. There's also a difference between buying a game with a system, and buying the system for the game. Lots of games have phenomenal attach rates early in their runs (Halo 3's was 52% in the U.S. at the end of 2007), but that doesn't mean that they were responsible for most of the hardware units sold at the time.

Also, not only does that attach rate not necessarily imply AC was responsible for the sales growth, think of the implications of that "over half." If we assume that most or all of those people wouldn't have otherwise bought a Switch if it wasn't for AC, it would result in hardware numbers that are way too low. While that "over half" figures is worldwide and thus we don't have region-specific figures, let's assume it's the same everywhere, and let's assume "over half" means, say, 55%.

According to Famitsu, during the period of Week 14 to Week 26 the Switch sold 811,890 units. If 55% of all new Switch owners in that time span bought a copy of AC as their first title to go with the system, that amounts to over 446k people. If we assume that none of those 446k people would have bought a Switch had it not been for Animal Crossing, that means Q2 sales in Japan would have only been 365k. Considering that the Switch sold 514,675 units in the same period in 2019, that would mean the Switch would have been way down YoY had it not been for AC. In fact, it would be considerably worse than Q2 2017, where the Switch sold 474,812 units. Obviously, nobody would be able to reasonably argue that the Switch would have sold that little had AC not been a thing. While we can't say for sure what the Switch would have sold in Japan had AC not been a factor, given that it was still up YoY early this year prior to AC's release, it stands to reason that it was still feeling the effects of the Lite, which did produce a big increase in sales, and it likely would still be feeling at least some residual effects of the Lite boost. It's interesting that the Switch's weekly average for the entire period from Week 14 on up to the most recent week was about 86.5k units (though that was enhanced a bit by a strong showing for Obon), about the same as the average for both the period of Weeks 2-6 and a bit higher than for the month of October 2019. This lends further credence to the Lite having a strong residual effect. While Q2 might have been down a little bit from where it actually was in Japan without AC, it probably wouldn't have been by much.

The numbers for the U.S. fare a bit better. The Switch sold around 1.85M in Q2 in the U.S. If 55% of all those new Switch owners in that time span bought a copy of AC as their first title to go with the system, that amounts to just over 1M people. If we assume that none of those 1M people would have bought a Switch had it not been for Animal Crossing, that means Q2 sales in U.S. would have only been about 830k. That is slightly up from Q2 2019 (by just under 8%), but there's reason to think the Switch would be up far more than that. 830k spread out across the whole 13-week span averages out to about 64k/week. That's worse than Sept. & Oct. 2019 and Jan. & Feb. 2020, which would indicate that, if we assume that 55% wouldn't have bought a Switch had AC not been a thing, the Switch would have started to stall out after Q1 and already be back to YoY drops. Now, had there been absolutely nothing in the first half of 2020 to stimulate sales, I do think this would have been plausible. We possibly would have seen the Switch at best slightly up YoY, and more likely at least slightly down.

But AC wasn't the only stimulative factor. We know the pandemic and the stimulus had an effect on console sales in the U.S. I've already gone into extensive detail explaining this.

Given these facts, there is good reason to think that had AC not been a thing, the Switch would still be up considerably in Q2 in the U.S., and in Japan it'd be flat at worst. If we assume that over half of all new Switch owners in Q2 in the U.S. wouldn't have bought one had it not been for AC, then we'd also have to assume that the pandemic and stimulus had minimal impact on Switch sales, and that is something not supported by the available evidence.

While half of all new Switch owners in Q2 may have bought AC as their first game to go with it, that's because it just happened to be the hot new title. But had AC not been a thing, all or nearly all of them would have likely still bought a Switch regardless, and they would have simply picked up some other game to go with it. Just because a huge share of people bought AC to go along with their Switches, that doesn't necessarily mean AC was actually responsible for the observed YoY sales growth in that quarter.

TL;DR: Having strong attach rate doesn't necessarily mean a game is capable of causing record sales growth.

We can even do a different TLDR.

A game can be a system seller for like 1 year or more, but not one that would make the system sell significantly above its average. Actually the games that keep releasing are actually system sellers that keep the console baseline sales, with big titles giving a spike of couple weeks to one month, while supporting that the average holds out.



duduspace11 "Well, since we are estimating costs, Pokemon Red/Blue did cost Nintendo about $50m to make back in 1996"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=8808363

Mr Puggsly: "Hehe, I said good profit. You said big profit. Frankly, not losing money is what I meant by good. Don't get hung up on semantics"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=9008994

Azzanation: "PS5 wouldn't sold out at launch without scalpers."

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src said:
Jranation said:

Im sure its not as bad as the PS4 and the Switch in Japan. 

PS4 has been stock constrained in Japan for weeks.

Or are you saying XB1 is stock constrained in the US? Otherwise, cute try at being clever.

I thought both Sony and MS reduced production for PS4 and XB1 to make room for next gen? 



Pocky Lover Boy! 

@Shadow1980
I really like reading your post most of the times and you are one of my favourite user in those threads.
I hope you'll see this comment as an advice and not criticism.

I think something you are missing as a predictor is the "fantasy". That's actually a very important factor. Fantasy does not mean making unrealistic and stupid predictions, it just mean that you can see things outside of the written story. I talked about something very similar in a youtube video, where people were saying "NO YOU CAN'T SAY AC NH WILL SELL FOR SURE 10 MILLION IN JAPAN, THAT'S MORE THAN THE BEST SELLING GAME", and is very worthless to say i was right.

Looking at the history of the market is very important for predictions, i totally agree, and that's why i think you are a very good analist. (yes i just used the word analist)
but lack of fantasy is a big problem, and if you wanna be one of the best, you really should start to be more brave with your predictions. Fuck if something seem insane, if you find reasons to something crazy happening, and you have the felling of a crazy prediction happening, then just do it. Look at me and Tbone. We don't give a fuck what people say, and we keep doing a lot of good predictions.

I will not reply to every points you made, because you can understand is just so much to read. if you want my opinion on the whole Animal Crossing, COVID, and Switch sales, i'll just say this:

COVID or not COVID, there's no way Switch would have sold less in 2020 than in 2019. Switch is not just slighly up YOY, it's massacring last year peformance, WITH SHORTAGES, there is no way that withouth COVID Switch would be down YOY right now. 2020 was destinated to be up YOY.
Now, if the biggest reason for this increase is COVID, or Animal Crossing, i don't really care. All i know is that both had a very important role, and made those insane numbers possible.



@Shadow1980 

1. The PS4 didn't provide any positive surprises, it was the same thing year after year. People knew exactly what they were getting.

If you want a revision to explain sales, Switch got one and it's called Lite, specifically made to address the handheld market. We had seen elsewhere in the world that the Lite's sales have been additive instead of taking a chunk out of hybrid SKU sales. The only reason for doubt you'd have are the two single-digit percentage year over year declines in January and February 2020, but I think I've told you before that Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was the fastest selling exclusive game in US history and had to have at least some spillover effect into January and February 2019 (along with NSMB U Deluxe release in January 2019) to make the comparisons for 2020 tougher (no noteworthy release in the same period).

I am pretty sure that Pokémon Red and Blue had a huge positive effect on GB sales. But the problem I see is that you'd rather assign such long term sales boosts to accompanying hardware revisions, rather than the games that keep selling strong. As in, it's not New Super Mario Bros. that is the reason for people to buy the DS, they buy the system because it's the DS Lite and NSMB just so happens to be something they pick up alongside it.

2. Maybe I had worded that poorly, but the point I was making wasn't that COVID had absolutely nothing to do with it, but rather that it isn't COVID alone.

3. This is akin to saying "Mario Kart 8 didn't move an appreciable amount of Wii U hardware, so why would a Deluxe version be a system seller for Switch; MK8 couldn't do it when it was a new game, so why would it do better as an old game." - The reason why it worked for Switch is because the market likes the hardware as opposed to the Wii U which the market hated. Dislike for the hardware existed for the 3DS too, hence why having the same games as Switch doesn't lead to the same positive results.

When you say "upwards of 2 million surplus units", you frame it as if I had said that COVID had absolutely nothing to do with Switch's increased hardware sales this year. But the entire point of contention here and a month ago is that people think that you assign too much weight to COVID.

4. This here is the key point. You said how every Nintendo console's bestseller list has been dominated by Nintendo games (also held true for the NES, SNES and GB for which NPD has only partial to no data), but you did not provide an explanation for why the DS bucked the sales trend of the Nintendo systems in recorded NPD history. This is basically the only point you have to answer. Why is it that the DS peaked so late and sustained its sales for so long.



Legend11 correctly predicted that GTA IV (360+PS3) would outsell SSBB. I was wrong.

A Biased Review Reloaded / Open Your Eyes / Switch Shipments

RolStoppable said:

4. This here is the key point. You said how every Nintendo console's bestseller list has been dominated by Nintendo games (also held true for the NES, SNES and GB for which NPD has only partial to no data), but you did not provide an explanation for why the DS bucked the sales trend of the Nintendo systems in recorded NPD history. This is basically the only point you have to answer. Why is it that the DS peaked so late and sustained its sales for so long.

The 2009 Swine Flu pandemic. 



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DonFerrari said:

We can even do a different TLDR.

A game can be a system seller for like 1 year or more, but not one that would make the system sell significantly above its average. Actually the games that keep releasing are actually system sellers that keep the console baseline sales, with big titles giving a spike of couple weeks to one month, while supporting that the average holds out.

Basically.

I bought an XBO in Nov. 2014 for the Master Chief Collection. That technically makes it a system-seller. Some people may on occasion have bought an XBO for the MCC long after the game was released. But there's no indication that caused any measurable sales growth. The same can probably be said for a lot of games, including niche titles. But for the most part, it appears that most people just get a system to get the system, and buy whatever games that are available to pique their interest. That's the baseline.

If a game causes a system with an average baseline of 50k units/week to jump up by an additional 5000 during its release week and sales go back to baseline the following week, that's a 10% boost for just one week. It could be easily overlooked as statistical noise unless the baseline was very flat. And when you're tracking sales on a monthly basis like the NPD Group does, that scenario I just mentioned would yield only a 2.5% increase for the whole month. Nobody would notice anything unusual. It takes a lot to cause a big spike for a whole month. That's why the number of games that are noticeable system-sellers in the U.S. is so low. In Japan, where sales are tracked weekly, we see a lot more obvious examples of games causing a spike in hardware sales, but even then the vast majority of games have minimal to no impact.

So yeah, there probably are a ton of system-sellers. A lot of them may even convince someone to buy a system for that game months after the game was released (maybe they were waiting for a sale, or didn't have the money earlier, or their store was out of stock, or whatever). But very few of them cause noticeable spikes in hardware sales, and of those that cause big spikes there has certainly been nothing like what some are attributing to Animal Crossing in the U.S.



Visit http://shadowofthevoid.wordpress.com

In accordance to the VGC forum rules, §8.5, I hereby exercise my right to demand to be left alone regarding the subject of the effects of the pandemic on video game sales (i.e., "COVID bump").

Chart time!

Not much to say that I haven't already addressed. Everything is up this month. Restocks, most likely. The overall market is in a good spot in these final months before the release of the PS5 and XSX/S.

More charts to come later.



Visit http://shadowofthevoid.wordpress.com

In accordance to the VGC forum rules, §8.5, I hereby exercise my right to demand to be left alone regarding the subject of the effects of the pandemic on video game sales (i.e., "COVID bump").

Shadow1980 said:
DonFerrari said:

We can even do a different TLDR.

A game can be a system seller for like 1 year or more, but not one that would make the system sell significantly above its average. Actually the games that keep releasing are actually system sellers that keep the console baseline sales, with big titles giving a spike of couple weeks to one month, while supporting that the average holds out.

Basically.

I bought an XBO in Nov. 2014 for the Master Chief Collection. That technically makes it a system-seller. Some people may on occasion have bought an XBO for the MCC long after the game was released. But there's no indication that caused any measurable sales growth. The same can probably be said for a lot of games, including niche titles. But for the most part, it appears that most people just get a system to get the system, and buy whatever games that are available to pique their interest. That's the baseline.

If a game causes a system with an average baseline of 50k units/week to jump up by an additional 5000 during its release week and sales go back to baseline the following week, that's a 10% boost for just one week. It could be easily overlooked as statistical noise unless the baseline was very flat. And when you're tracking sales on a monthly basis like the NPD Group does, that scenario I just mentioned would yield only a 2.5% increase for the whole month. Nobody would notice anything unusual. It takes a lot to cause a big spike for a whole month. That's why the number of games that are noticeable system-sellers in the U.S. is so low. In Japan, where sales are tracked weekly, we see a lot more obvious examples of games causing a spike in hardware sales, but even then the vast majority of games have minimal to no impact.

So yeah, there probably are a ton of system-sellers. A lot of them may even convince someone to buy a system for that game months after the game was released (maybe they were waiting for a sale, or didn't have the money earlier, or their store was out of stock, or whatever). But very few of them cause noticeable spikes in hardware sales, and of those that cause big spikes there has certainly been nothing like what some are attributing to Animal Crossing in the U.S.

You are absolutelly right. Sometimes the game was a system seller but it isn't possible to see because even though the person wanted the sytem because of that game perhaps that person didn't have the money at the time so saved and bought later. Other times the person simply wanted the system and would buy anyway at the moment person could and well that game was what they were looking for the most (like Nintendo evergreens tend to be). And most cases people want a certain collection of different games to buy the console so you would have to attribute 4 or more games as the reason for that purchase.

And yet none of that would show in the graphic because that is basically what sustain a sales curve over the years making the averages of that period of that. And only a very few games really show significant increase in sales for a given month, much less for several months later. After all it would even be hard to defend something like "why did you buy this console?" "Because of game X" "But why now instead of any of the previous 12 months?".

The real things that move the average sales curve were as you numbered, mainly price reductions and revisions.



duduspace11 "Well, since we are estimating costs, Pokemon Red/Blue did cost Nintendo about $50m to make back in 1996"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=8808363

Mr Puggsly: "Hehe, I said good profit. You said big profit. Frankly, not losing money is what I meant by good. Don't get hung up on semantics"

http://gamrconnect.vgchartz.com/post.php?id=9008994

Azzanation: "PS5 wouldn't sold out at launch without scalpers."

@Shadow1980 While you did provide a good deal of evidence that even the biggest games typically don't create a surplus more that 200k in U.S sales by using past data to support your argument. It's much harder to apply that data to Animal Crossing's situation for several reasons:

-We've never seen a console exclusive game sell 22 Million Copies in only 3 months, that's unprecedented territory. So to use data from past games that sold far less than than that and most that probably never even hit 22M sold in their lifetime is illogical since we've never seen a game in history sell this much this quickly. This makes a lot of the past data irrelevant when it comes to AC's situation.

-Plus, pretty much all the games you mentioned don't have anywhere near the casual and female appeal like AC does, many people who don't even play video games or buy video games went out to buy a Switch just for AC alone. AC's crowd is a fanbase that's undetectable in NPD sales because a large part of AC's fanbase are people who don't even purchase video games outside of Animal Crossing. When you have a fanbase that doesn't purchase much or any video games outside of AC, you simply can't predict AC's affect since using previous data from games that have a small female or casual crowd like Destiny doesn't help explain AC's situation at all.



The NPD doesn’t really cover digital sales for Nintendo. So we don’t know the real power of software “effect” on hardware. It’s really naive to compare that to other platforms like Xbox and Sony.

The switch has a slew of high profile acclaimed successful indie titles releases that we don’t know real data on. That alone could boost hardware sales completely uncovered by the NPD.

Quite honestly, just look at GTA5 plummeting off the chart as soon as take 2 took digital away. I could imagine Nintendo games plaguing the top 10 months on end non stop if digital were to be included.

There’s no way Animal Crossing is # 2 behind COD on the best seller list. We already know total sales of AC with digital. COD doesn’t come close.

Last edited by BlackBeauty - on 20 September 2020