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GTA IV was the top game of April, though Nintendo ruled all once again in hardware

Lately, the NPD monthly console sales figures all start off the same way with Nintendo on top. The figures for April are no exception, with the Wii and DS planted solidly in first and second place.

The Wii sold a stunning 714,000 units, almost matching the 721,000 it did in March. On top of the still strong-selling Super Smash Bros. Brawl, April also had the release of Mario Kart Wii to add to the Nintendo mascot-fuelled software frenzy. The upcoming release of Wii Fit will only boost Wii sales even higher, if such a thing were possible.

“Wii sales were buoyed in part by the strong launch of Mario Kart Wii, which sold more than 1.1 million units,” said Cammie Dunaway, Nintendo of America’s EVP of sales and marketing. “Our belief in appealing to a broad, diverse audience of players continues to resonate with consumers, and we look forward to continuing our outreach to an expanded audience with the launch of Wii Fit next week.”

The DS sold 414,000 handhelds, well behind the 698,000 units it did in the month prior, but still well ahead of all the competitors.

Sony’s handheld took up third place once again with 192,000 sold – strange for a month where no PSP game appeared on the top ten best-selling games.

Surprisingly, Grand Theft Auto IV’s release at the end of the month didn’t seem to stir high-definition console sales as much as most were expecting. Both the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 sold roughly the same number of hardware.

Microsoft’s console was just ever so slightly ahead with 188,000 Xbox 360s sold, while the PlayStation 3 was right next to it with 187,100 sold. Both consoles sold fewer units than it did in the previous month, when the Xbox 360 at 262,000 units and PlayStation 3 selling 257,000.

Despite the slowing sales, Sony seemed pleased by the sales improvement over a year ago. “Clearly, the tremendous legacy of Grand Theft Auto on PlayStation, combined with the blockbuster launch of Gran Turismo 5 Prologue packed a one-two punch with consumers at retail this month. The proof is in the numbers and, in April, PlayStation 3 hardware sales experienced a 127% increase over April of last year,” said Jack Tretton, president and CEO of SCEA.

The PlayStation 2 was still alive with 124,400 sold, but also down from 216,000 units in March.

Without a doubt the biggest game of April, despite being released the last few days of the month, was Grand Theft Auto IV for the Xbox 360 with 1.85 million copies sold. Mario Kart Wii took second place with an impressive 1.12 million. PlayStation 3 owners also bought 1 million of Grand Theft Auto IV to push that version to third place.

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RE: Did I read the end of this artical wrong?
By Hiawa23 on 5/16/2008 10:09:37 AM , Rating: 2
I don't know about many of you, but I did not expect GTA4 to move anymore consoles than the month before & let's be realistic here, these numbers came out when GTA4 was only out for a few days. On top of the game being available for both consoles, & I figure that many who want this game already owned a PS3 or 360, or like me, both, & I also own a Wii, but really has no appeal to my tastes other than gaming with my daughter.

It's clear the game did an amazing job setting the record for an entertainment event, but to base everything on these numbers when the game was only out afew days, really isn't giving the whole picture.

Actually, I am surprised, given the high gas prices, damn near every thing up at the grocery stores, the HD consoles sold what they did. As far as the Wii goes it caters to a totally different market so I expect that to continue to do well.

I figure the Wii is about $500 plus cheaper tan the HD consoles, since most that buy the PS3/360 will have to invest in a HD TV, at minimum to get the most out of them while the Wii many casuals don't even care about that.

By Locutus465 on 5/16/2008 10:56:53 AM , Rating: 2
I didn't expect it, but on many forums I was being told that GTA4 was going to cause mass purchases of PS3's by current PS2 owners just looking for a reason to upgrade. In this regard the GTA launch was rather underwhelming. Which at least in my mind validates what I was thinking... Never look to any multiplatform releases no matter how traditionally the the series is for the sony platform to sell sony hardware. Instead it'll be games like MSG and Gods of War (actual PS exclusives) that will be the drivers for the platform. In a way I almost hope that doesn't quite pan out the way they're hoping... It would just push more PS3 price drops meaning I'll be able to pick one up sooner for GoW ;)

"You can bet that Sony built a long-term business plan about being successful in Japan and that business plan is crumbling." -- Peter Moore, 24 hours before his Microsoft resignation

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