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May NPD: Xbox 360 sales aren't grand, but GTAIV's sales are stellar

Going into this we'll be as upfront and honest as you can expect a fanboy to be. Overall, May's NPD numbers are not all that peachy for team Microsoft and the Xbox 360. No, they aren't horrible by any means, but they surely aren't anything to write home about.

So, let's get the icky news out of the way first. Just as the analysts predicted, console sales in general did not see any magical Grand Theft Auto IV effect. The Xbox 360 was only able to move about 186K units in May while Sony was able to do a bit better selling around 208K PS3s and the Wii just keeps on selling like crazy, moving an astonishing 675K units. And even though GTAIV didn't spur new hardware sales it did itself sell very, very well. Being one of the only pro-Xbox 360 highlights in this May NPD report is mention that the 360 version of GTAIV outsold the PS3 version nearly two to one, selling some 871K units compared to the PS3's 442K. And you are correct, we will take pride in that GTAIV sales fact.

Check the break for a complete breakdown of May's NPD report including the top ten video games and a list of all console sales. Also, we recommend putting on two layers of fanboy armor, because we have a hunch that you'll need double protection this month.

Continue reading May NPD: Xbox 360 sales aren't grand, but GTAIV's sales are stellar

MS supports Viva PiƱata franchise heading to DS

Chatting with Eurogamer, Rare engineer Joe Humfrey re-confirmed Microsoft's' understanding ways when talking about Viva Piñata making its way to rival Nintendo's DS, saying that "they see DS as a very viable platform." Humfrey is of course talking about their upcoming Viva Piñata: Pocket Paradise project that'll bring those adorable piñatas to the DS. Which, admittedly, seems a bit odd at first, but makes sense from an "let's do all we can to expand the franchise" mindset. "They put the Viva Piñata franchise on TV to reach a broad audience, they put it on PC to reach a different broad audience, and they're doing the same thing with the DS," says Humfrey, "they're trying to widen the audience of the franchise."

And we fully agree. A DS version of Viva Piñata is going to roxorz and Microsoft should embrace Nintendo's portable handheld, that is until our Xboy releases. When that happens, we won't play nice with Nintendo.

MS: XBLA and XNA will 'leapfrog' the competition

In the same interview that brought word of the 350MB XBLA restriction increase, Microsoft's David Edery wanted to make it known that the Xbox Live Arcade is where it's at and thinks that it will "leapfrog" the competition with the user-created XNA roll-out later this year.

Speaking about both Nintendo's WiiWare and Sony's PSN, Edery mentioned that XBLA's XNA component "from an innovation perspective it's going to help us leapfrog the competition, effectively until they find a way to duplicate it, assuming they ever do." Zing! Zing! Zing! But before we begin the mudslinging, we have a bunch of questions that need to be answered. Questions like: Can user-created XNA content releasing to the XBLA differentiate it from what Nintendo and Sony are doing? Will it be easy to use and navigate? Will the XNA integration actually happen in 2008? Will it rain today? We can only hope our mountain of questions will be answered soon ...

Feb NPD: 360 sales lag, but software sales soar

It's time once again for our monthly dose of NPD sales numbers and for the second month in a row the Xbox 360 falls behind the PS3 in terms of hardware sales. Though, February's 254.6K Xbox 360 sales were only slightly lower than the PS3's 280.8K, so it wasn't a huge walloping. And, for the second month, Microsoft's excuse for lackluster hardware sales is due to hardware constraints and not being able to keep up with demand. A problem that should be rectified for March. Oh, and that console called the Wii ... 432K units sold. Ouch!

Hopping over to the software side of life, February was stellar for Xbox 360 games seeing five of the ten top spots. Among the big winners was Call of Duty 4, Devil May Cry 4 and our friends at Harmonix were finally able to break into the top ten with Rock Band selling 161.8K units. Click towards the break to get your fill of February NPD hardware and software sales and let's just hope March brings a turnaround. Otherwise we have a feeling the big guys in Redmond may be forced to do some North American price cutting to stay competitive and strike fear in the eyes of their enemies.

Continue reading Feb NPD: 360 sales lag, but software sales soar

January NPDs put PS3 in front of the 360

Well, well, well. If it isn't the lowly PS3 finally making a move in January and actually beating the Xbox 360 in terms of number of units sold in North America. Yes sir, you can color us NPD shocked and impressed.

According to the just released January NPD sales numbers, the Xbox 360 has come in a disappointing third place in the console wars, only managing to sell 230,000 consoles while the PS3 moved 269,000 and the Wii sold 274,000. But before you storm the streets in a fit of rage, know that there is some sort of explanation for the third place outing ... there wasn't enough stock. You see, according to Microsoft, they haven't been able to replenish the retail channels quick enough post holidays, resulting in less Xbox 360s on shelves and less 360s available to consumers. So, if that theory makes you sleep better at night, then go with that and know Microsoft is producing 360s as fast as possible and should regain its sales lead over the PS3 come February NPD. Hopefully.

We also wanted to mention that not only has Call of Duty 4 claimed the number one sales spot selling another 330,900 copies in January, but Rock Band made its top ten NPD sales debut too. You can review the rather gloomy NPD ranks and numbers after the break, though we advise keeping one thing in mind. It was lack of stock at retail ... lack of stock at retail ...

Continue reading January NPDs put PS3 in front of the 360

Fanboys unite to bring GoldenEye 007 to the XBLA

A few days back we reported on the rumor that an Xbox Live Arcade remake of the N64 GoldenEye 007 was in development by Rare and since then, we've learned the truth. Or what we think to be the truth.

1UP reports that the XBLA version of GoldenEye was in development by Rare for two solid months before the project got shelved. Shelved, because Microsoft and Nintendo couldn't agree on financials, profit sharing and all the grown-up business stuff that's involved. As a result of the shelving, the GoldenEye and XBLA communities have united over at GoldenEye XBL in an effort to bring attention to the drama at hand by sending out emails and doing some old fashioned petition signing. Again, we can't be 100% certain that the GoldenEye / Microsoft / Nintendo drama is based on fact, but if you choose to believe and GoldenEye on the XBLA is important to you, then by all means get active. Unite!

[Thanks, to everyone who sent this in]

Reggie disses 360's European presence


Nintendo of America boss, Reggie Fils-Aime, has some fighting words for Microsoft. In an interview with the San Jose Mercury News, Reggie was asked about Nintendo's success with the Wii. When asked about its performance in Europe in comparison to its competitors (i.e. Microsoft) Reggis responded, "360 is selling well only in one country: UK. Across the rest of Europe, it is not performing well. Wii, on the other hand, is selling exceptionally well all through Europe."

We know that Microsoft has been aggressive in tackling markets all over the world, launching its console in countries like Brazil and India last year. Whether or not the 360 is performing well throughout Europe, we really don't know, though we're sure Microsoft remains confident in it sales prediction of 12 million units worldwide by the end of June.

What say you, European fanboys? Is Microsoft's Xbox 360 a hot commodity outside of the UK, or is Reggie right on the money?

[Via GamesIndustry.biz]

Built with XNA, a NES emulator on your 360

For everyone who thought Microsoft's XNA project would be worthless, now is the time to rethink your opinion. Xbox-Scene got word that a guy by the name of Lone Coder has used XNA to build a NES emulator that runs on the 360 called XNA SharpNES. Though, you'll need to purchase a XNA Creator's Club membership, have Visual C# Studio Express and XNA Game Studio Express installed on your computer. There are a few bugs to work out yet, like no ROM loading menu and overall performance on the 360 running at 60% - 70%. But at least things are moving in the right direction. For more information and to download the code head over to XNA SharpNES's Google Code site. And if you're willing to try this out please comment on your experience with the emulator so we can live vicariously through you.

[Thanks, to everyone who sent this in]

360 gets some love, but none for you PS3

Back when the 360 launched in 2005 there were shortages for months and months. Nobody could find 360s earlier this year, so why hasn't the PS3 shared the same "hard to find" lifecycle? The PS3 did share similar launch shortages just like the 360 due to blue diode manufacturing issues. Shouldn't that have spurred an overflow of sustained demand like the 360 did? Geekidiot.com put together a few reasons why the PS3 hasn't been in huge demand and we must say, we agree with them. Especially the point they make about the 360 being the console that your friends have, the console for online gaming, and the console for multiplayer fans. It's kind of odd to see how the 360 and PS3 demand cycles ended up being so different.

Be sure to kiss your 360 tonight knowing that you have one damn fine gaming system in your possession ... be proud of her.

[Via Digg]

What if GoW was on the Wii?

The other day I got my hands on a Nintendo Wii, played a little Wii sports and nearly chucked the controller through the TV. Big deal you say, this is Xbox 360 Fanboy, not tell me your experience with the Wii fanboy. Again, point taken. But I was thinking, what if Gears of War was on the Wii? Do you think it would work or just be awkward? Rolling around your living room, popping up behind the living room couch, raising your hands for a little chainsaw action ... maybe. Then again, that sounds like a lot of exercise and sweating. I'll stick to Gears of War on my 360, what about you?

PS3 cut in half, delay in Europe: Our take

Covering PS3 news is anathema to some of our readers, but we must comment on Sony's surprise announcements today. In case you haven't heard, Sony set us up the bomb today that they will ship a worldwide total of 500,000 PS3s at launch, and only in the US and Japan at that. Given these numbers, Sony also readjusted their end of the year sales estimate to 2 million units (down from 4 million). Even more perplexing, Japan will only see 100,000 of the first shipment. Even more perplexing than that, Europe will see a grand total of zero (zed) PS3 units at launch. Which of course means that the PS3 won't actually be launching at all in Europe, at least, not this year. Our sad crumpet munching friends will have to wait until March of 2007 to snag a PS3. At least you have Dead Rising now. What, if anything, does this mean for the 360? Read on for our take.

Continue reading PS3 cut in half, delay in Europe: Our take

Reggie: Wii no sidekick to 360


Numerous fanboys (not to mention Peter Moore) have predicted that the Nintendo Wii find success as "second console," tucked safely on the shelf next to an Xbox 360. An agile Robin, if you will, to Microsoft's burly Batman. Afterall, you can buy both a 360 and a cute, cuddly Wii console for the cost of a PS3. Unfortunately, Mario master Reggie Fils-Aime told USA Today that his Wii refuses to don the green underwear.

"I'd much rather have the consumer buy a Wii, some accessories, and a ton of games, vs. buying any of my competitor's products."

So for Fils-Aime it's my Wii or the high-Wii. Hey, nobody expects Reggie to embrace the role of yellow-caped man-bitch...er...Boy Wonder. The economics just work out that way.

MS sued over controller design

Some no-name company from Texas is dragging Microsoft and Nintendo to court over 12 supposed patent infringements related to game controllers, that amazingly went un-noticed until now. Sony, fresh off a losing court battle over force feedback technology, seems to have avoided the dual shakedown this time around. Who holds the patent on transparent extortion schemes?

[Thanks Randy]

MS Exec: Expect "surprises" (except a price cut)

Microsoft's European executives continue to talk better smack than their US counterparts, and hence earn our fanboy love. Richard Teversham, marketing manager for Xbox Europe, promised MS will reveal "a number of surprises" intended spoil Sony and Nintendo's party this fall. Teversham specifically denied plans for a 360 price cut, re-directing the question at Sony's gilded console. He went on to call the Wii a "Gamecube with a DVD drive" and questioned Nintendo's ability to meet demand. En garde!

So what surprises could Microsoft have up their sleeve?

And now a word from Peter Moore


Kikizo sat down with Peter Moore for a big video interview where he spoke candidly about all things Microsoft, Xbox 360, handhelds (kind of), their competition and more. It's packed full of information, so go ahead and watch it to get the full effect.

Here's a little comment from him on the topic of widening the scope of games industry as a whole and what he believes the competition is doing for everyone: "I think Nintendo's doing their job, in broadening the look and feel of what games are about for the consumer. And, you know, Sony wants sell high definition movies."

Touché Mr. Moore.

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