December and Year-End 2015 Gaming Sales Numbers

Last month I provided my analysis of the NPD numbers when they were revealed and went so far as to predict Star Wars Battlefront might even move up from it's number two position to take the top spot over the holidays. Let's see if I was right...

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November Gaming Sales Numbers

As a nerdy, analytical video games enthusiast, some of my (weirdly) favorite days every month are the days when PlayStation reveals their monthly charts of which games sold best on the PlayStation Network and when the NPD Group releases the monthly list of top-selling physical copies of games. Admittedly, the NPD Group numbers seem to be slightly less relevant every month as they don't count hardware bundles or, more notably, the ever-growing number of digital sales. Still, these two reports tend to be our best tools for analyzing sales in the industry. So imagine my surprise when the PlayStation blog and NPD figures were revealed on the same day.

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What Activision Acquiring King Might Mean for Gamers

Candy Crush has excelled at making the casual gamer willing to endure microtransactions. Activision will now have access to all of the research and metrics that King has been working with for years. They'll study the pain points of microtransactions as well as how to capitalize on bringing in new audiences when the existing one is continually phasing out. Imagine a Call of Duty where you get 10 free matches a day but have to charge your PSN or XBLA account a few bucks to play the rest of the day. Dancing emotes in Destiny are making them money now, but consider if the rumors from a few weeks back about being able to purchase consumables with the microtransaction currency became real. Yes. Some players would be outraged because that time that they put into getting exotic gear becomes a little less meaningful when other players can just pay for a better chance at getting those drops. But far more players would probably drop a few bucks for the chance to get a few new yellow engrams, providing Activision with extra cash on a game that people already paid for. People are spending money so they can do the Thriller dance in-game; of course they'll do it for a chance at the game's best weapons.

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