NPD Group has issued its console hardware sales data for September 2009. How big of a difference did Sony’s PlayStation 3 price cut make? Was Microsoft able to do some damage control? Did the Wii — which still continues to dominate the field — continue its slide? Let’s find out!
Nintendo DS: 524,200
PlayStation 3: 491,800
Xbox 360: 352,600
PlayStation 2: 146,000
Ah, there’s nothing like a price cut to make the console wars more interesting, eh? The $100 price reduction and the introduction of the PS3 Slim helped Sony achieve some nice numbers. It will be interesting to see if it can hang onto the momentum for the rest of 2009. Although the Wii’s pace has cooled off, it’s still selling well and adding to a huge installed base. The Nintendo DS? That portable console has yet to encounter any kryptonite.
What do you guys and dolls make of the September numbers?!? Is this the start of Sony’s big comeback? Or it it just a temporary thing, like some Microsoft executives suggest?
While it’s not as big as last week — with Brutal Legend and Uncharted 2 leading the way — there are some significant titles shipping this Tuesday. The two biggest games on the list are Borderlands and WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 (which will likely go down in history as having the best writing in any videogame made by man). Here are this week’s PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii, PlayStation Portable, and Nintendo DS releases…along with some brief commentary. I’ve taken out most of the garbage and kids games (unless I found them funny).
Are you picking up any of this week’s releases? If so, leave a comment and let me know which ones.
PlayStation 3 Bakugan
Borderlands — Super looking forward to this one. It looks stylish and smart, but I’m not sure how well it will sell. I’m hoping the best for Gearbox though.
FIFA Soccer 2010
WWE SmackDown vs. Raw 2010 — The Mickie James storyline is one of the most heart-wrenching experience you’ll ever find in a videogame.
The fine folks at GamePro did some sleuthing and came across a lovely teaser from Charles Martinet, the voice of Mario; he’s working on a new Mario title that’s not part of the Super Mario Galaxy or Super Mario Bros. series. Martinet sent out a tweet that said:
Awesome new Mario Game! And it’s not NSMB Wii, and it’s not Galaxy 2, but it’s going to be crazy fun!
Any guesses as what it could be? Keep in mind that Martinet has voiced several Nintendo characters, including Wario, Luigi, Waluigi, Baby Mario, Wart, Clawgrip, Triclyde, Mouser, and several Punch-Out!! characters.
Also, remind me to tell you how I randomly bumped into Martinet while looking at gaming magazines at a Tower Records in San Francisco in 2002.
At a recent roundtable discussion, legendary Nintendo game designer Shigeru Miyamoto discussed a wide variety of topics. One interesting tidbit was his view on Xbox 360 game achievements. Miyamoto said:
I’m not particularly well versed in the Xbox 360 achievement system. I spend most of my time working on my own games, and don’t have a lot of time to look at what other people are doing.
The idea of playing the game in a particular way and having it unlock a special prize that rewards you… it feels like something we’ve been doing for the last 15-20 years.
Miyamoto has a point, but he’s also missing one. It’s true that many of his Nintendo games were designed to reward gamers for playing in a particular way, but people like points, trophies, etc. It reminds me of when my friends at 1Up started the site; I had no idea what my “score” was for, but I wanted more points, which made me keep visiting.
Welcome to Coffee Talk! Let’s start off the day by discussing whatever is on your (nerd chic) mind. Every morning I’ll kick off a discussion and I’m counting on you to participate in it. If you’re not feelin’ my topic, feel free to start a chat with your fellow readers and see where it takes you. Whether you’re talking about videogames, balloon boy, the new info on that FFXIII chick, or advanced sock-organization techniques, Coffee Talk is the place to do it.
For many enthusiast gamers, Nintendo has gone from a lovable loser to a disdained winner. Longtime gamers professed their love for the company while it was struggling during the Nintendo 64 and GameCube eras. Now that the Wii has Nintendo enjoying record success, a lot of the same people have turned their backs on it. Why is that? Is it an abandonment thing? Sure, the company has had tremendous success with the mainstream audience, but it’s still serving up Marios and Zeldas and Metroids for enthusiasts.
As someone that follows the business, I’m all for the Nintendo Renaissance. It was unexpected and made the market really interesting. As a gamer, I’m happy that the company is enjoying great success. The millions of casual gamers that bought Wii consoles will help make sure that I get new Pokemons, Zeldas, etc. I seem to be in the minority though. A lot of the comments I read at TheFeed (and a few that I’ve seen here) were full of anti-Wii and anti-Nintendo venom. Perhaps it’s entirely fueled by nostalgia, but I don’t see how anyone can hate Nintendo. All I have to do is think about a game like The Wind Waker to get warm fuzzies (of the gaming variety).
On this wonderful Friday, I want to know why you feel that way you to about the Wii. Has the console changed you opinion of Nintendo? Do you feel like the company abandoned you? Or did you just outgrow it?
Japanese retailers have been blogging about the upcoming Pokepark for Wii, but Nintendo Japan has been mum on the game…until now. Andriasang reported:
In Pokepark Wii, you take control of Pikachu and work through mini games with other Pokemon. After making friends with Pokemon through tag, battle, and quiz mini-games, you can cooperate with your new friends in more advanced events.
If you’ve been reading my stuff then you know that I’m a giant Pokemon nerd. While the game doesn’t sound as if it will offer the rich experience of the Pokemon role-playing games, I’m still psyched for it. Plus, it kind of mimics my real life in that you make friends “through tag, battle, and quiz mini-games”.
Anyone else down for some more Pokemon action on Wii?
The last two characters from Tatsunoko vs. Capcom for Nintendo Wii have been revealed by IGN: Gatchaman’s Joe the Condor and Megaman’s Zero. Fans of the Battle of the Planets (G-Force) cartoon will remember Joe as Jason. Gamers will recognize Zero from Megaman X and various Megaman portable games.
Tatsunoko vs. Capcom is one of the Wii games I’m looking forward to the most. While I’m pretty ambivalent on Zero, I’m totally psyched that Joe the Condor is in the game.
Are any of you looking forward to this title? What characters are you digging?
Square Enix + Bon Jovi = Awesome! To help promote Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers, Square Enix has enlisted the help of the New Jersey rockers. According to Andriasang:
Square Enix announced today that it will be tapping none other than Bon Jovi for the new Wii Crystal Chronicles game.
Commercials for the game will make use of ‘We Weren’t Born to Follow’ off the band’s new The Circle album. The commercials will start appearing later this month.
I love Bon Jovi and I love Square Enix games, so I’m thrilled by this partnership. I can’t wait to see the Japanese commercials online!
What do you make of the Square Enix/Bon Jovi pairing? Do you think Sega will try to get Cinderella to help them out? Maybe From Software will use Dokken. Also, isn’t this the same song MLB is using to promote the playoffs?
Legendary Nintendo game creator Shigeru Miyamoto addressed a crowd of Japanese retailers to assuage any fears that New Super Mario Bros. Wii will be anything but a blockbuster hit. According to a Games Maya manager, Miyamoto said:
It’s a Mario that will continue selling even after one year has passed.
It’s interesting that Nintendo felt that trotting out Miyamoto was necessary. I can’t imagine the game doing anything but ridiculous numbers, but Andriasang’s Anoop Gantayat (hi Anoop!) feels that some retailers might be concerned with Super Mario Galaxy not selling as well as previous Mario games. I think those retailers should have their heads examined — New Super Mario Bros. Wii will be a fun game that appeals to gamers of all ages and skill levels. I will stand on my head if it doesn’t sell millions of copies.
Are you dudes and dudettes looking forward to this game? Or do you think it’s a case of Nintendo selling the same title over and over again?
Should videogame difficulty automatically scale to the level of the player? That’s what Julian Togelius and Georgios Yannakakis (I caught Yannakakis from a mosquito in Thailand once) from the IT University of Copenhagen believe. According to New Scientist, the pair conducted an adaptive-gaming experiment using Super Mario Bros.
For those who fret that their hard-earned money might be wasted on a dud computer game, help could soon be at hand. A new breed of game aims to suit everyone by adapting to an individual’s playing style.
To investigate the idea, the researchers altered the game Super Mario Bros, varying parameters such as the number and type of enemies and the size of gaps between platforms in response to how the players fared. The game also records a player’s moves, including how often they run and jump, and the time spent standing still.