China Toy Fair


August Video Game Sales Up Year-over-Year, but New Software Launches Show Weakness

NPDGrouplogoAccording to analysis from The NPD Group’s Liam Callahan, overall new physical retail sales of video game hardware, software, and accessories increased by 8 percent this August over the same month last year. These overall sales also followed a similar pattern as prior months, with explosive hardware growth driven by eighth generation consoles offsetting declines in software.

For August, overall hardware sales doubled from the same month last year, caused by a more than 200 percent increase in console hardware sales with continued strong sales of eighth generation hardware, including Wii U, PS4, and Xbox One. Eighth generation hardware represented close to 70 percent of August’s hardware sales—the highest percentage share since the release of the Xbox One and PS4 last November.

As far as software, new launches in August declined 41 percent compared to last August, due to poor comparisons between titles. Eight of the top 10 games last August were new launches, compared to only three during this past August. Madden NFL 15 was the number one game in August, with growth over last August’s Madden NFL 25.

LeapFrog Introduces LeapTV Video Gaming System

LeapTVLeapFrog Enterprises Inc. has unveiled its first educational, active video gaming system, LeapTV, which is designed specifically for children ages 3 to 8 years old. This new console system combines activity and movement with LeapFrog’s educational curriculum.

LeapTV features a transforming gaming controller that has been specifically designed for children’s small hands and limited dexterity. In its regular configuration, it enables classic gameplay, but with the press of a button it easily transforms into a motion controller and LED pointer controller. The LeapTV system also features a motion-sensing camera, which puts a child directly in the game, as well as a design that integrates into most homes.

The LeapTV video game system puts learning into motion with three ways to play: body motion, pointer play, and classic control. For body motion, the motion-sensing camera captures a child’s moves and puts them into the game as they explore activities like dance and martial arts. For pointer play, the controller transforms into a pointer with a simple twist and lets kids snap jungle vines, slice through coconuts, swing from building to building and more. [Read more...]

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Embraces Next Generation Gaming Technology

CallofDutyAdvancedWarfareThe next generation of the Call of Duty franchise will focus on one thing: power. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare by Activision Publishing Inc. will include a new advanced soldier, all-new exoskeleton gameplay mechanics, and film/TV star Kevin Spacey. Sledgehammer Games is currently developing the game for next generation consoles and PC.

The game is set in the year 2054, when a private military corporation has emerged with the power to rescue humanity and rebuild the world, which is struggling to recover after a global attack. Players will play as advanced soldiers empowered with new exoskeleton abilities, high-tech gear, technological advancements, and the ability to join the ranks of specialized units. [Read more...]

NPD Reports Xbox One and PlayStation 4 Powered Video Game Sales

According to the U.S. Games Industry Sales analysis by The NPD Group’s Liam Callahan, February hardware sales increased by 42 percent over the prior year, due to a more than 60 percent increase in console hardware sales. These strong year-over-year increases are due to the success of the Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

The analysis also showed that total video game sales in February were $887 million, a change of 9 percent compared to February 2013. This is credited to strong growth in hardware and a slight rise in accessory sales. Total software sales—across the console, portable, and PC categories—were [Read more...]

NPD Report Shows 36 Percent of U.S. Plays Digitally Downloaded Games

According to The NPD Group’s Exploring Digital Gaming report, an estimated 36 percent of the U.S. population ages 13 and up are digital gamers, defined as currently playing digitally downloaded games on either a computer, video game console, or portable device. Of that percentage, 16 percent report only playing games downloaded digitally.

The computer is the most popular device for digital gaming, owning 90 percent of digital gamers playing on the device, while 28 percent play digitally downloaded games on a video game console. Although digital play is increasing among console players, only about two-thirds of primary console players—or those who play on consoles most often—purchase digital games more than once per year. Only 14 percent purchase on a regular, monthly basis.

When asked about their purchase preference if both physical and digital formats of a game are being offered at the same price, 44 percent of primary console players are more likely to choose physical in this scenario. Primary computer players do not automatically choose digital, with the group being split between 25 percent for digital, 28 percent for physical, and the remaining gamers being indecisive.

 

Hasbro and Ubisoft Partner to Bring Hasbro Games to Consoles

ubiUbisoft will develop and publish current and next-generation console games based on some of Hasbro’s most popular gaming brands, including Monopoly, Scrabble (in the U.S. and Canada only), Trivial Pursuit, Risk, Battleship, and Cranium.