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Forums - Sales Discussion - Why doesn't Xbox sell as well as Switch or Playstation in Europe?

RolStoppable said:
vivster said:

It's not that it sells worse in Europe, it just sells unrealistically high in the US. It really is a miracle that it sells as much as it does.

Americans are patriots. There were also more than 70 million people who voted Trump, so it's not a miracle that there is a large number of Americans who want to buy an American box.

Then you admit, that part of why it does well in the US, is because americans buy anything american.
Following that logic, the reason it doesnt do the same in europe.....

Is not because europe is anti buying american products? but because we re not americans, that buy anything american?



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JRPGfan said:

(...)

Maybe the issue isnt the entire world? but the US? maybe the reason it does well there, is because americans buy whatever is american instead of other way around? Usually americans dont like to think like this though.

*edit:
Case in point:

RolStoppable said:

There's a general attitude in mainland Europe that is wary of the USA, as opposed to a general attitude in the UK that they rather be closer to the USA than mainland Europe, both politically and economically. This is why the console market of the UK is at odds with the countries of mainland Europe, because the general perception of the USA differs greatly.

From the perspective of mainland Europe, Microsoft is pretty much the poster child of what it means to be American, capitalistic to the degree of being oppressive. If Microsoft can be reasonably avoided, then that's what most people in mainland Europe will do. Xbox has a very similar game catalogue as PS, but it's not of much use even at lower console prices; Xbox tends to have better deals in retail chains, but people would rather pay a little more to get the same games.

There are no special feelings in either direction towards Japanese companies, so Nintendo and Sony carry no baggage like Microsoft. The only noteworthy exception is France which seems rather fond of Japanese culture and entertainment, hence why anime used to be popular in France well before other European countries; so being associated with Japan counts at least as a small advantage instead of being irrelevant.

BS.

People need to stop this. Xbox is just unpopular because it never once really took a lead (with games) and ran with it.
If Xbox consistantly made better games, that were enjoyed by more europeans, then overtime it would start selling more and more.
The fact that it hasnt, is why its getting beat by playstation here.

It has nothing to do with "eu = anti buy us products".

Looks like you believe I am American.

JRPGfan said:
RolStoppable said:

Americans are patriots. There were also more than 70 million people who voted Trump, so it's not a miracle that there is a large number of Americans who want to buy an American box.

Then you admit, that part of why it does well in the US, is because americans buy anything american.
Following that logic, the reason it doesnt do the same in europe.....

Is not because europe is anti buying american products? but because we re not americans, that buy anything american?

Of course it needs to be acknowledged that part of why Xbox does well in the USA is because it's an American product. There's no other western country where patriotism gets more fostered than in the USA.

However, this doesn't undo the attitudes in Europe. As I outlined in my preceding post, there's a clear difference in purchasing patterns between the UK and mainland Europe. The Xbox 360 sold 3m more units than the PS3 in Europe and that wasn't because of exclusive games, because the 360's best-selling games were multiplats. If your logic was applied, then Microsoft got this clear victory in the UK (~9m vs. ~6m) because they themselves made better games than Sony, but that's a laughable assertion. People in the UK have a different attitude towards the USA than people in mainland Europe.

It should be clear that people in the UK feel very different, hence the whole Brexit thing. The same attitude is also the reason why UK people have the odd habit of saying "game X will release in the UK and Europe on date Y" despite the UK being a European country, which makes the whole thing a meaningless distinction for normal people.



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

A Biased Review Reloaded / Open Your Eyes / Switch Shipments

If Americans buy consoles based on patriotism, then explain to me why Japanese cars dominate the American market. On the other hand, when I went to Germany I saw a lot of the crappy VWs and Audis on the streets and almost none of the much superior Toyotas and Hondas. There might be trade barriers that prevent a bigger presence o Japanese cars in that market though. I don’t know.

A big portion of Americans are patriots for the right reasons, such as their history and their accomplishments as a nation. Can I say the same about Europeans, when they buy inferior European cars and prefer to pay more for a console that offers 90% of the same content as their closest competitor, because it’s not American? If anything, this weird and quite frankly ungrateful anti-American sentiment in Europe seems bigger than patriotism in America.



Valdney said:

If Americans buy consoles based on patriotism, then explain to me why Japanese cars dominate the American market. On the other hand, when I went to Germany I saw a lot of the crappy VWs and Audis on the streets and almost none of the much superior Toyotas and Hondas. There might be trade barriers that prevent a bigger presence o Japanese cars in that market though. I don’t know.

A big portion of Americans are patriots for the right reasons, such as their history and their accomplishments as a nation. Can I say the same about Europeans, when they buy inferior European cars and prefer to pay more for a console that offers 90% of the same content as their closest competitor, because it’s not American? If anything, this weird and quite frankly ungrateful anti-American sentiment in Europe seems bigger than patriotism in America.

Europeans weigh, size and weight, and how far a car can drive pr litter gas, alot more than americans do.
Alot of people dont want a big super car, or a "superior" (bigger/expensive car).

They want something thats small enough to make getting around narrow lanes, and has easy parking (again down to size), and doesnt use too much gas. Some of this is due to things that add to costs, like a "weight tax" on cars, and how expensive gas is in europe.

1 litter is like 0,25 gallons (abit more, but roughly) and costs like 1,60$  (so thats like paying 6,4$ pr gallon at a gas station).
(apparently thats like 3-4 times as much as in the USA?)

Also if europe was so against Toyotas, then why is it like the 2nd or 3rd most bought brand in europe (currently)?



To be honest I don't think anti-US sentiment or anything like that are the main reason. Remember the Xbox 360 sold decently well in Europe. If the Xbox was a good proposition, people in Europe would buy it. 

The real reason honestly is probably going to be taste in games. Let's just think for a second about the main Xbox exclusive IPs, the 2 big ones are probably Halo and Gears of War. Xbox in general is the "shooters console", and most of its best exclusives are indeed FPS games. First person shooters are not exactly unpopular in Europe; I definitely know plenty of people who play shooter games. But they probably aren't as popular as in the US.

To continue the analogy to car brands, as someone who lives in Europe; some American brands do decently well in Europe; these being the ones that have a better product for the different needs of European customers. Ford in particular is a decently popular brand, it is not uncommon at all to find Ford vehicles. The Ford Transit regularly appears on "best selling vans" lists here in Spain. And the Ford Fiesta is also a decently popular car. However, a vehicle like the Ford F series (huge pickup trucks) would never sell in Europe despite being the best selling car in the US. Ford seems to have done well and sold small vehicles (and vans) in Europe, and pickup trucks in the US.

If Microsoft offered a product that had exclusives and an image better oriented towards the tastes of Europeans, more Europeans would buy it.

The reason is interestingly not that different from the reason why Xbox sells horribly in Japan, except toned down by a lot (European sales figures are still way better than Japanese ones for Xbox).



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I will also note that it is kind of hard to categorize Europe as a single coherent entity. Indeed, in the UK Xbox does reasonably well. However, here in Spain Xbox (other than briefly at the 360's peak) is almost non-existent and Playstation is almost synonymous with video games as a whole. Even the Vita sold decently in Spain! And in Eastern Europe if I am not mistaken PC gaming is still king over consoles.

So you can't do a quick explanation and can't really use "Europe" as a coherent entity.



Every country has products which it makes exceptionally well.  For example, the French are known for making good wine, while Germans are known for making good beer.  Even though I've never been to either country, I'd bet wine is a more popular drink in France while beer is a more popular drink in Germany.  I mean, why wouldn't it be this way?  If this is what that country does well then why wouldn't its own citizens enjoy the benefits? 

Furthermore, in the US when people want imported wine, they like French wine, while if they want imported beer, then they want German beer.  We don't import French beer or German wine.  We want to import the good stuff.  However, the US is such a large ecomony that we can, for example, make our own beer and lots of people buy it.  There are reasons why American companies can do this.  The two most obvious are that 1) domestic beer can be easily sold at a better price and 2) American companies are especially good at marketing to American people.  (Also German companies are best at market to Germans, French companies are best at marketing to the French, etc....)  So Americans might drink American beer or imported German beer (or beer from some other country that makes good beer).  But in Germany, they don't want American beer.  German beer is actually higher quality beer, but American companies get a "home turf advantage" in their own country, so both American and German beer can sell well there.

There are products that the US actually makes that are the best in the world.  A good example is movies.  France is especially disgusted by American culture, but 9 out of the top 10 highest grossing films in France for 2019 were American made.  It's because the US is where the best movies are made.  Because China has a large economy it also makes it's own films.  In China, both Chinese made films and American made films do well, and there are plenty of films from both countries that do well int the Chinese box office.  But in most other countries American movies dominate the box office.  American movies are actually higher quality movies, but in China the Chinese made movies also do well because of a "home turf advantage".  Chinese film makers understand the Chinese culture the best even if their movies are not as well crafted as American movies.

So, what does this say about video games.  In the US, XBox systems sell well and so do the Japanese systems from Sony and Nintendo.  In Japan, XBox sells abysmally.  This is because XBox is actually a lower quality product: both in hardware and software.  The Japanese only like Japanese hardware and software, because these are higher quality products.  In the US, XBox gets the home turf advantage and can sell well.  In other countries, like in Europe, it may not be as obvious because games can be made from a variety of cultures.  But Europeans are culturally neutral toward Japan and the US, so they just want the higher quality hardware.  That is not the XBox.  They also want games that are more appealing to European culture, like FIFA, and you tend to see more of these games on Playstation than on Nintendo systems.  The result is that you see Europe, as a whole, tends to prefer Playstation the most, but Nintendo is seen as high quality too, and XBox is seen as an inferior product.

So, I know I said a lot here.  But basically it comes down to quality and culture.  Every country wants high quality products, but they also tend to be biased toward products from their own culture as well.  So a higher quality product and a lower quality product can both be successful in the same country if the lower quality product is domestically made.  In other countries, they will prefer to import the higher quality product.  And for video games XBox tends to do well in the US or maybe other English speaking cultures.  Culturally, XBox has a "home turf advantage" in English speaking countries.  Everywhere else it is simply seen as an inferior product.



The_Liquid_Laser said:

[...]There are products that the US actually makes that are the best in the world.  A good example is movies.  France is especially disgusted by American culture, but 9 out of the top 10 highest grossing films in France for 2019 were American made.  It's because the US is where the best movies are made.[...]

I'm just passing by to say that the bold part is quite arguable and sales don't necessarily equate quality. I might agree, however, that America makes the best movies that offer pure entertainment or are oriented to the mass market. But not the best movies overall.

Just in case, it's not that they don't make good movies that go beyond entertainment, of course they do; it' just that I wouldn't go as far as to say those movies are the best. (And they usually have that mass market appeal anyway.)

Whatever the case, this is just my opinion. (Also, sorry for being off-topic.)

Actually, I've been thinking and I'd like to add something on topic. Maybe it's not an accurate or representative vision of reality, but, at least in Spain, I'd say that people don't buy stuff thinking of where a product was made. I've only seen something like that regarding cars and also when a country has gained some recognition for making a certain product, like the examples of wine and beer above. But, when talking about video games, I've never seen something of the like. The closer I've personally seen is brand recognition: if someone here is going to buy a console, they first think in "the Play" or "the Nintendo", because those have been around for longer and are more established.

Apart from that, what other people buy is also important: if someone has a certain console and their friends are planning to buy one, they'll probably choose the same that their friend has. And if there are many people talking about a certain console, then it's probable that some others buy it.

But that's just a perception of mine that could very well be wrong. And it only applies to Spain anyway, so I'm not sure of how relevant it is.

[Edit]

Edited to add the italics and the OT.

Last edited by Verter - on 14 December 2020

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Also...

Please, feel free to correct my English.

Verter said:
The_Liquid_Laser said:

[...]There are products that the US actually makes that are the best in the world.  A good example is movies.  France is especially disgusted by American culture, but 9 out of the top 10 highest grossing films in France for 2019 were American made.  It's because the US is where the best movies are made.[...]

I'm just passing by to say that the bold part is quite arguable and sales don't necessarily equate quality. I might agree, however, that America makes the best movies that offer pure entertainment or are oriented to the mass market. But not the best movies overall.

Just in case, it's not that they don't make good movies that go beyond entertainment, of course they do; it' just that I wouldn't go as far as to say those movies are the best. (And they usually have that mass market appeal anyway.)

Whatever the case, this is just my opinion. (Also, sorry for being off-topic.)

(...)

The type of quality I am talking about here is technical expertise.  In filmmaking this would be things like: editing, cinematography, pacing, special effects, etc....  American film makers are clearly the best with these types of things.  In fact, this sort of thing is not subjective and experts can agree which movies are good in these areas and which are bad.  The subjective part of a film involves it's actual content.  Also what one culture considers good content can be seen as poor content to another.  I, as an American, might think the Captain America movies are great, while someone from another country might find them boring or repulsive.  In fact, they might even dislike all super hero movies.  So basically, I'm saying American movies have the best craftsmanship, even if when the content isn't considered very good.

A similar sort of thing can be said about Japanese games.  These kinds of complaints tend to be more common for Western games that Japanese games: controls are unintuitive, game is buggy, development feels rushed, etc....  That is because Japanese games are the best put together purely from a craftsmanship standpoint.  Also, these sorts of complaints are also objective in nature.  On the other hand, when a person complains about a Japanese game it is more like, "Why does this guy have a huge sword and spikey hair?"  That is a complaint about the content.  Japanese people see this as good content, but someone from another country might see it as bad content.  What is seen as good content or bad content is subjective, and it is highly influenced by a person's culture.

There are parts to any art or entertainment that are objective and their are parts that are subjective.  When it comes to the objective parts, Americans are the best at film making and the Japanese are the best at game development.  That doesn't necessarily mean any given person will like American movies or Japanese games.  What people like is still highly dependent upon the content and that part is subjective.



We like to stick to well known things, MS started later and its OS' already had a bad fame of unnecessary complications and bad stability and security, while Sony started before, and it enjoyed a long established fame of at least decent sound equipments and excellent TVs. Moreover, the first XBox essentially was a consolised PC, so most PC gaming fans stuck to PCs, while console fans stuck to their Sony and Ninty consoles.



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