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PS2 showing no signs of slowing down despite being in its silver years
Mass market not ready for high-def gaming, says analysts

Before the two new console launches in November 2006, it was popular belief that supplies of the Nintendo Wii would be ample and consumers would be able to secure one without much hassle or worry. Today, a full five months following launch, Wiis are still hard to find, and those who do find them can resell them for a greater profit than the retailer.

According to one analyst’s opinion noted by Home Media Magazine, the demand for the Wii could outstrip supply all the way to 2009. “I believe the Wii will continue strong growth although supply continues to be a problem,” said Billy Pidgeon, video game analyst, IDC. “I’d like to see Wii hardware shipping in larger quantities or mass market consumers may cool on it. Having said that, I don’t believe supply will meet demand for the Wii until 2009.”

“Xbox 360 and PS3 need system-selling games ASAP. Halo 3 will help, as will Lair and Heavenly Sword, but that leaves a hole in Q2 which will be filled by Wii, DS and PSP hardware and software. We’ll also see more PC and PS2 software picking up the slack,” added Pidgeon.

Apparently he isn’t the only analyst who feels that the mass market isn’t quickly taking to high-definition gaming. Michael Pachter at Wedbush Morgan Securities thinks that the PlayStation 2 will remain a strong seller thanks to movie license games such as Spider-Man 3 and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

“It still seems to be the year of the PS2,” said Pachter. “Notwithstanding all of the other choices, consumers keep buying PS2 games, with barely any drop off. Virtually all of the year-over-year growth is attributable to a slower than expected decline in PS2 software sales.”

These analyst comments came immediately following the release of March video game hardware and software sales figures from NPD, with a particularly strong showing for Nintendo DS and PlayStation 2.



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I don't think so...
By AmpedSilence on 4/25/2007 4:56:47 PM , Rating: 5
Okay, first off i have a Wii and i love it. There now that that's out of the way on to the topic at hand.

I think the world is ready for HD gaming, just not at this price point.

Wait until 2009 comes around that analog signals have to be stopped broadcasting and people go out and new HD tvs. You think that then people won't be interested in HD gaming? The installed user base of people that can take advantage of the HD is limited, but once it grows these consoles will do better.

Second, its all about software. What games does each console offer? The Wii doesn't need a "killer-app" (it has the controller as it's "killer-app") but the other consoles do. Now given the controller will lose appeal unless there is a way to use it effectively, but for the time being it will be enough.

To Sony, you want to push out your PS3? Stop producing games for the PS2. They are releasing games on both systems, why would i go and purchase a $600 console when i can get a similar gaming experience on the PS2, which is what $150? NOTE: I realize that HD has advantages, but we are talking mass-market not high end, or even middle-high end.

But why would any publisher stop making games for the PS2? Here you have a system that has sold over 93 million units! 93 million!!! With some games costing over $10 million to produce this kind of user base is a gold mine. It would be silly for a publisher to limit themselves if they don't have to. And also why would Sony stop production on it? They make a killing on every unit, which by now has to be nothing but profit.

I can see the PS2 lasting a while until HD TVs are more wide spread OR Sony stops making them OR the game choice become limited for it. The Wii, well, that will be around and it will do well until people get bored with the current game set UNLESS Nintendo gets its act together and releases some really great games. Seeing as Mario Party, Super Smash Brother's (which i hear is online enabled), and Excite Truck 2 (which also looks to online enabled) are on the horizon i don't see that as being a problem.

XBOX360, well, when i get one in the next few months i guess i can form an opinion about that then.




RE: I don't think so...
By darkpaw on 4/25/2007 5:11:31 PM , Rating: 2
The analog cut-off won't have a huge impact at all. It only means there won't be any more over the air analog TV broadcasts. Lets see, just how many people do you know that still use rabbit ears? I knew exactly one family, but even they got cable last year. My poor ass white trash sister even has cable.The new broadcasts are forced to be HD, they just have to be broadcast in the assigned spectrum for digital broadcast. (derail - Always hate saying digital broadcast.. anything thats sent OTA is analog, its the content thats digitally encoded - end derail)

That said, HDTV penetration rate has gone up from roughly 15% to just under 30% in the last year alone and it will keep rising (I'm one of those happy new owners). This is mostly due to the drop in the price of HD sets though. The rest of your points are all pretty good.


RE: I don't think so...
By dice1111 on 4/25/2007 10:03:48 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
My poor ass white trash sister even has cable.
Can I get her number?


RE: I don't think so...
By Alpha4 on 4/25/2007 10:22:01 PM , Rating: 2
Shit son. WTF did your sister do to earn your animosity? My heart goes out to her now, but I think I speak for many here when I say this kind of drama is best kept away from public eyes & ears...


RE: I don't think so...
By darkpaw on 4/26/2007 9:00:10 AM , Rating: 2
Nah, no animosity. My sister is great, just goin back to where I grew up is like visiting Kenny's house in South Park. Most people that live there never leave, I got the heck out soon as I could.


RE: I don't think so...
By MonkeyPaw on 4/26/2007 9:14:51 AM , Rating: 2
For the record, you now know 2 people who don't have cable. Ironically, I have an HDTV, but it's mainly for my Xbox360 and widescreen movie watching. I also pull HD signals down over-the-air, and it's mainly to watch sports in HD (mostly football, but MLB and golf are good, too). I also appreciate the space savings of my LCD TV. Cable is a waste of money to me. I'd rather be doing something else than to flip through 65-100 channels of programming that I'm not dying to see. I find that with cable, you settle for whatever is on, and pay $40-60/month for the priveledge. That's a new game every month if I really wanted. That's just my opinion, though. I'm sure most people find cable pretty valuable.


RE: I don't think so...
By FITCamaro on 4/25/2007 10:48:44 PM , Rating: 4
Why does everyone seem to think that all digital cable signals mean they'll be in HD? Digital cable is a digital signal. Are all digital cable channels HD? Last I checked, far from it. There is some picture quality improvement with a digital signal but the all digital switch in 2009 will not speed the proliferation of HD.

Also, Sony isn't making games for the PS2. Developers are. Sony can't control what they make. Short of pulling all developers licenses for developing for the PS2 which would be like putting a gun to their head (which they've all but done anyway with their arrogance over the PS3).

They are pushing out PS2s still but thats because its selling and they're not about to cut off a revenue maker with PS3 sales in the toilet and each one that does sell being a loss. Even if Sony did stop making PS2s, developers would still keep making games for it. Honestly I wish Microsoft was still producing Xboxs'. They make a great moddable media PC to stream content from your PC to your TV.


RE: I don't think so...
By AmpedSilence on 4/26/2007 9:37:56 AM , Rating: 2
I completely agree.... no analog signal != all HD signal.

But in my post i had referenced that as a catalyst to truly push the HD TV units into mainstream. When the analog tv stops working in 2009, there will be a large portion of the population that will go and get a new TV rather opting for the converter box. Considering last black friday Wal-mart was selling 32" LCD TVs for $499; you can get that same tv for $399 on outpost.com.

Fast Forward 2 years, is it unreasonable to assume that at that time a 42" plasma/LCD/DLP with 720p or 1080i (or even 1080p) capability will be that price? I don't think so. In fact, such a deal might already exist; i haven't researched.

So once that HD TV user base is installed, then people might truly consider HD gaming an option for the mainstream.

In addition, by that time there is a good chance that there will be a price drop for all systems in question. So, lower cost of entry and a TV to take advantage of the HD capability. Then the current HD systems will shine.

Lastly, i think addressed why PS2 was still having games produced for it. But i agree with you regardless.

Oh, and i think of everything i own my modded XBOX with XBMC gets more use than anything else!


RE: I don't think so...
By phusg on 4/26/2007 7:07:12 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
The Wii doesn't need a "killer-app" (it has the controller as it's "killer-app") but the other consoles do.

I know what you mean, but don't say it all wrong like that, then I have to reply. No matter how innovative and good a controller is, it is not an application, it's an input device.

As far as I can gather from earlier posts Wii Sports is the killer-app for the Wii.


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