258w ago - Amazon has reported record holiday sales despite the tough economic climate. Over 5.6 million units were shipped on its peak day of December 15th and the most popular products included the Nintendo Wii, the iPod, Acer notebooks and a 52" Samsung HDTV.
To quote: Internet retail giant Amazon.com reported record holiday sales on Friday, a rare good performance in one of the most dismal holiday shopping seasons in years.
The Seattle, Washington-based online store did not provide a breakdown of sales figures but said online orders reached record levels during the holiday shopping season for the 14th year in a row.
It said in a statement that more than 6.3 million items were ordered worldwide and 5.6 million units shipped on its peak day, December 15.
Amazon said it shipped items to more than 210 countries between November 14 and December 24 and more than 99 percent of its orders arrived in time for the holidays.
Amazon said best-selling holiday items this year included the Samsung 52-inch HDTV, the Apple iPod, the Acer netbook computer and Nintendo Wii.
258w ago - The Little Big Planet team addressed some of the biggest little issues facing the game in an interview with IGN, from copyright infringement to talk of a sequel. Despite reportedly slow sales, Media Molecule is optimistic about their numbers so far.
"There's all these different reasons that you could be disappointed with the sales and look at it that way, or you can say we kept pace with the Fallouts, etc," said Media Molecule's Alex Evans. "Every other game that we were keeping pace with was a third or fourth iteration, and this is our first one."
David Smith from MM said they'll be consistently releasing packs like the recent Metal Gear Solid themed, so "every few months this thing improves so it stays visible and people stay excited."
This led to the talk of a sequel, and in direct contrast to reports, the developer is shying away from a follow-up right now, at least publicly.
"When I told people we're not going to do a sequel, they thought that we were lowering our support for it," said Evans. "A new way of answering that question is that we're putting all the creative ambition of a sequel in, but we might not end up calling it a sequel."
258w ago - As predicted, the Blu-ray format experienced excellent holiday sales during the past few weeks. One of the hottest ticket items were Blu-ray players. Consumers have spent over $60 million on Blu-ray titles last week, representing 14 percent of the total home media market.
Reports from the Home Media Magazine, state that Blu-ray sales experienced a dramatic increase of 167 percent. This increase is mainly due to the release of The Dark Knight.
There were several other successful movies such as Wall-E and Wanted. Wall-E followed closely behind The Dark Knight. It is definitely a significant achievement for Blu-ray sales to reach 14 percent of the home media market, considering all of the various forms of audio and video formats out there.
259w ago - Couple of sad stories for you today, PS3 owners. One involving a cute little title that should never have been thrust into the limelight as a system seller. The other, a gorgeous tactical RPG.
Let's start with LittleBigPlanet, then. Media Molecule's quirky, original platformer was always going to be a struggle to sell to the holiday masses, what with it being an original IP that involved neither rock music nor guns. But even Sony's most pessimistic sales teams wouldn't have been prepared for this.
The game sold an OK-ish 205,000 units in October, but wasn't out for that long. It'd do a lot better in November, when it was on sale for all four weeks, right? No. It sold a disappointing 141,000 units for the month, which saw it slip out of NPD top 20 charts altogether.
Lord only knows how few copies it would have sold had it not been marketed to hell and high water. Then again, maybe that was the game's problem. The game itself is fine, as its "failure" is a relative one. Selling 346,000 of a niche, debut IP with novel concepts would otherwise have been a huge success!
But selling 346,000 copies of your most high-profile holiday release? That is not a success.
The second game we're looking at today is an even sadder tale. Valkyria Chronciles is one of the best-looking games...
260w ago - Alone among the three major videogame consoles, sales of the PS3 are down about 19% from November 2007, according to the latest stats from the NPD Group. Sony was only able to sell 378,000 PS3s this November, compared to 466,000 last year.
And the problem for Sony isn't the recession, it's the PS3. Microsoft (MSFT) put up respectable numbers with its Xbox 360, selling 836,000 units vs 777,000 in November 2007. And Nintendo's (NTDOY) Wii continues to dominate the market, more than doubling sales from 981,000 to 2.04 million.
So why is the PS3 flopping so badly?
1. It's the most expensive console on the market, $150 - $200 more than its rivals. Even if you believe the video game industry is "recession-proof" (it isn't), a tanking economy makes consumers more price-conscious.
2. The PS3's big bonus is its ability to double as a Blu-Ray player. Too bad no one seems to care about hi-def DVDs. The differences between Blu-Ray and DVD are hard to see on a TV less than 50".
3. The PS3 just doesn't have any must-have titles exclusive to the console. "LittleBigPlanet" has generated decent buzz but isn't a game-changer, and neither is Sony's new virtual world "Home."
There's really only one option left for Sony to remain in the game: deep price cuts, and not just for...