I think we all know by now that Microsoft’s huge Xbox 360 exclusives almost always sell significantly more than the PS3’s counterpart. For example, Halo easily outsells Killzone, and Gears of War outsells Uncharted by millions. Many people wonder why, especially considering that the PS3 and Xbox 360’s console sales are very close to each other, with the PS3 only slightly behind. The Quality of Uncharted and Killzone are both exceptional, and easily rank up with Gears and Halo in terms of content and quality, so why do those games never manage to sell the huge numbers seen by Xbox games?
Many blame the PS3’s focus as a problem Sony’s developer’s face, with the PS3 being sold as more than a game console a lot of the sales PS3 receives are people looking for a cheap Blu-ray player or media center for their TV. I can only see that being a factor on the early PS3 sales not that people can get much cheaper media center alternatives now. Other excuses people make the lower sales seen on the PS3 is the smaller fan base due to lower console sales, though I don’t think that’s the problem considering the 360’s reliability issues bringing both consoles to roughly the same numbers, maybe even putting Sony in the lead on active consoles.
The question on why PS3 Exclusive sales are less gets even weirder knowing that the PS3’s attach rate is roughly the same as the Xbox 360’s. That means in short that the PS3 owners buy the same amount of games than Xbox 360 owners do. That brings up my main point, Sony’s exclusive games juggernaut is hurting the sales of PS3 exclusives. Let us think about it this way, Sony has 3 major exclusive first person shooters, Killzone, MAG and Resistance, where as Microsoft has only one, Halo.
The sales from the PS3 FPS fans are being split across 3 games, where as Microsoft has almost every major 360 FPS fan buying only one game. Halo’s only completion is multiplatform FPS’s, but Killzone has to compete with Resistance, MAG, and multiplatform FPS’s. The same problem is apparent in other Genres as well, Gears is Microsoft’s major TPS, whereas the PS3 has Uncharted, Warhawk/Starhawk, and Socom.
There is a good reason that games like Gran Turismo and LittleBigPlanet go out to sell record numbers, and thats because those genres aren’t flooded by PS3 developers. LittleBigPlanet is the PS3′s only major platformer, and the same goes for GT5 being the PS3′s only major racing simulator. If PS3 developers all focused on a different Genre we gamers would receive much more diversity and the developers would receive more sales. Its win-win.
So, Sony’s exclusive Juggernaut may not be hurting the console as much as its hurting the developers. It takes more man power to develop multiple games that end up selling more. When compared to the 360, it takes much less manpower to develop one game that will go out to sell the equivalent of 3 ps3 games. Sony would probably see higher game sales if they had fewer exclusives. Is it something I want to see happen? Not at all, I am glad the PS3 has loads of content to play with, and I am not going to argue with Sony’s strategy as I am sure they know what they are doing. Well, food for thought.
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Update: I was mistaken on the PS3′s attach rate when compared to 360′s. I updated the article to fix the misinformation.
Update 2: Clarified a few points.