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For six years, the Internet Nexus served as my technology blog, but I've since started blogging at the SuperSite Blog instead. If you're looking for the blog, please head there. --Paul

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

2005: PC Gaming's Not Dead Yet

Actually, yes it is.

Business Week:
The most superficial analysis of the PC gaming market [in 2005] - i.e., the NPD summary of retail sales - showed yet another year-on-year tumble. Analysts (both professional and amateur) lined up to declare the platform dead. But there was a more sophisticated analysis to be made, and it pointed to continuing opportunity in the PC space.

Perhaps the single biggest accomplishment of 2005 was the online sales (via Steam) of Valve's opus, Half-Life 2. The company keeps its figures close to vest, but reliable estimates indicate that perhaps as much as half of the game's formidable sales total was achieved via Steam.

Importantly, these online sales did not come at the expense of the game's retail performance. Valve's Doug Lombardi says that Valve "saw increased sales via Steam without cannibalization of retail forecasts." According to Lombardi, NPD's retail-sales charts are understating the strength of PC games sales, and will increasingly understate that strength as the PC publishing model moves online to alternatives like Steam.
While I would never question the success of Steam, which is a wonderful tool through which I've made several PC game purchases, this is a terribly uninsightful article. Facts are facts: The PC game market is slowing, and the consoles are kicking ass. Game over, sorry.
[ Posted at 9:07 AM | Permalink ]


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