Over the past week, Nintendo and Microsoft have been trading barbs over which console--the Xbox 360 or Wii--holds the top spot for the most third-party games sold.
Nintendo was the first to "set the record straight" and released data from NPD that the company claimed showed that the Wii has sold more games than any other console when first-party and third-party titles are factored in. After hearing doubts over the inclusion of first-party titles, Nintendo then released a graph showing sales of only third-party titles, which it once again, compiled from NPD source data.
"I actually think that given the number of comments made from industry executives at E3 (or thereabouts) about how they didn't put enough resources against development of Wii games that the industry has realized that the old adage of 'only first-party games sell on Nintendo systems' is absolutely incorrect. I think you're right that the data will cause a few eyebrows to lift," NPD industry analyst Anita Frazier said in defense of the figures.
But Microsoft was suspect of the data and decided to release its own figures obtained from NPD to "clear the air." In its study, Microsoft claims "total third-party sales for the Xbox 360 since launch is currently 67,929,999 units, followed by the Wii at 33,394,311 units, and the PlayStation 3 at 19,976,325 units.
"Third-party sales for the Xbox 360 since the launch of the Wii and PS3 is 54,065,728 units, still almost double the Wii's 33,394,311 units."
On top of that, the company claims that it's actually selling more third-party titles per console sold than Nintendo, which it believes, shows its success in the space.
"No matter how you slice it, the Wii third-party game story is not a pretty one," David Dennis, group manager of corporate PR at Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business, said in response to his company's report.
So which company is right? Well, it looks like they're both right in their own special way.… Read more
Ars Technica has an interesting story up today detailing the Association Against Audiovisual Piracy's analysis of P2P traffic of illegal movie downloads in France between November 2007 and June 2008, which found that more people than ever are illegally downloading some of the top domestic and foreign films.
The organization found that 90 percent of all P2P downloads came from the most popular films in theaters and that a "daily average of 450,000 downloads (in December, it was 536,000 per day), and a monthly average of over 14 million downloads" was witnessed.
Allegedly stunned by the gall of all those awful pirates, the organization felt it was necessary to send one of its hacks out to make a statement detailing how appalled it was at the information it obtained. But no one saw this one coming.
"We are facing a major phenomenon that can endanger the film industry and audiovisual industries. We did not expect such figures," ALPA director Frederic Delacroix said in a statement to the AFP.
Wow. Hold your horses for a minute here. This piracy problem can "endanger the film industry?" This should probably be filed under the "dumbest things I've heard all month heading."
If piracy kills the film industry and suddenly theaters from across the globe are closing up shop, I'll be the first to laugh, and I'll bet I won't even be laughing the loudest.… Read more
As I was thinking of something to discuss today, I peered beneath my HDTV and saw my Wii sitting next to my Playstation 3 and Xbox 360. And as soon as I looked at all three, it had me thinking: the Wii is a wildly successful platform, but the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 are still limping along in the hope that they'll compete with Nintendo's platform at some time in the future.
But when we objectively consider the state of the industry, it becomes blatantly clear that Sony and Microsoft simply don't have what it takes right now to compete and more consumers are more excited about Nintendo's platform than anything Sony or Microsoft can dole out.
Realizing that, why wouldn't Microsoft acquire Sony's gaming division and consolidate its power and influence in the gaming space? I know, it may sound radical and at first glance you would think that Sony would never agree to such a deal, but keep an open mind for a minute and hear me out.
Sony's gaming division is quickly becoming a drain on its financial stability and shareholder confidence, while Microsoft is chugging along at a pretty good clip even though it has little influence in Asia. And although neither company can beat Nintendo alone, don't you think it's entirely possible that Microsoft and Sony could become a powerhouse in the industry if the former acquires the latter, thus making it a valuable idea?… Read more
Sorry, but I refuse to believe that video games can be the scapegoat for all of our problems. Call me a video game apologist or just another gamer hack, but it's true. Why should the video game industry be blamed for the problems all of humanity faces?
According to reports, Thailand has halted the sale of Grand Theft Auto 4 after a teenage boy confessed to robbing and murdering a taxi driver in an attempt to recreate a scene from the game.
"We are sending out requests today to outlets and shops to pull the games off their shelves and we will replace them with other games," Sakchai Chotikachinda, sales and marketing director of New Era Interactive Media, told Reuters.
Always one to jump on the bandwagon, Reuters found an anti-video game hack to tell us all that it's only going to get worse, but we also should watch out for those GTAIV-wannabes.
"This time-bomb has already exploded and the situation could get worse," Ladda Thangsupachai, director of the ministry's Cultural Surveillance Centre, told Reuters. "Today it is a cab driver, but tomorrow it could be a video game shop owner."… Read more
Looking for a second monitor? Or an LCD for the den or bedroom? Best Buy has a Hannspree 19-inch widescreen on sale for $139.99 -- and no rebates! You can also avoid shipping charges by picking it up in-store, though you will have to pay sales tax.
Normally I wouldn't get too amped about a 19-inch monitor, but this one has two big perks: built-in speakers and an HDMI interface (VGA, too). That means you could connect, say, a Blu-ray player or Xbox 360, or even an HD cable box. And because the monitor has a maximum resolution … Read more
Want to turbocharge your PC's video performance? The Asus ATI Radeon HD3450 graphics card works magic on the cheap. Though an entry-level card, it comes with an HDMI output and other bells and whistles. It lists for $49 (already a steal), but NewBiiz has the ATI Radeon HD3450 on sale for just $19 (after a $10 mail-in rebate).
Perfect for media-center PCs, the card's HDMI port offers easy HDTV connectivity. (It also has VGA and DVI ports.) It can produce resolutions up to 1920x1200, meaning it'll deliver full 1080p video. Plus, it's HDCP-compliant, so if you … Read more
E3 should be like the Olympics and presidential elections. That's right -- it shouldn't be a yearly show where press is ushered around San Francisco and made to listen to barely entertaining conferences from companies that like to massage their egos and try to show how compelling their products are. Instead, E3 should be the gaming event every four years that highlights the major developments in the gaming space and leaves the extra garbage to shows like the Tokyo Game Show or the Game Developers' Conference.
Now I know this may sound drastic and surely some of you are saying that I've lost it, but hear me out. On this week's TWiT, I first mentioned this theory to my fellow panelists, Leo Laporte, Veronica Belmont, and Major Nelson. And due to the immense response from the TWiT faithful, I felt I needed to expound on my theory a bit more and explain why E3, in its current state, is quickly becoming irrelevant and is in desperate need of a revival.
Unless it's a year where new consoles will be released or a major title will be announced, E3 is boring. How many times do we go to E3 hoping Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo will announce something major, only to find out that they want to talk about sales, revenue models, and a handful of games that don't matter nearly as much as they want us to believe? Lately, it has happened more times than we want to admit.
But for those years where new consoles are being announced, along with major new franchises or updates to big-time games, E3 is a spectacle that outshines all its competitors and makes for an extremely compelling week.
Unfortunately, those events are few and far between.… Read more
Call it rash, call it dumb, call it outlandish, call it crazy, but I'm officially boycotting first-person shooters. Why? Because I've finally had enough of the video game industry and its laser focus on profit to the detriment of innovation and fun.
Understand something: I grew up in a world where video games were not only innovative and fun, but they weren't derivative, they weren't over-blown movie wannabes, and they absolutely were not multi-million dollar projects that required more business acumen than innovation.
So for the past few years, I've quietly sat back and witnessed the video game industry sink into a rut that it's unwilling to dig itself out of. Why have we been forced to sit through sequel after sequel of the same rehashed game with only a few improvements here and there? Why have we been forced to sit through countless sports, first-person shooter, and dumb adventure games? Why have we been forced to basically play the same old game when all we really want is to play something new, exciting, and unique?
And although I can boycott any derivative genre I want, first-person shooters have become the worst culprit of them all, and if I want to take my own personal stand in the little way I can, that's the best place to do it.… Read more
I've been extremely tough on YouTube lately. About one month ago, I called for its head if Google doesn't turn things around quickly and I've also said that it's the garbage bin of the Internet. And while I still believe the second point, I'm starting to think Google is doing just what I said it should -- start working with major players and turn things around.
After it announced that YouTube would be working with Seth Macfarlane and feature his own channel, two big announcements from the YouTube camp have me changing my tune and thinking that Google may be on to something big here.
First, YouTube is coming to TiVo Series3 and HD boxes. At first glance, this deal may seem like a big deal, but in reality it's nothing more than a way for YouTube to expand its horizons and hopefully make it such a valuable attribute of set-top boxes (it's already on the Apple TV) that companies will be willing to enter sweetheart deals to have it included in their own boxes. In other words, it could have some long-term effects, but right now, it's not going to have any impact on the service's losses.
But in a far more important announcement that will have an impact on the entire service and probably have lasting effects, Google also announced that it has struck a deal with Lionsgate that will see the independent film studio enjoy a revenue-share agreement with YouTube and get a branded video channel to broadcast movie clips.… Read more