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Retail Down, Digital Up, Way Up


June 20th, 2012

Despite record declines in the retail gaming industry in May, the downloadable market has reached meteoric heights in May, as per the newest report from FADE. The downloadable market for the Xbox 360 saw a massive 392% increase in year-over-year revenues, thanks to Minecraft and other key releases in May. FADE believes that this transition in consumer spending may correlate with the weakness of the retail market, signalling further shifting away from retail to online purchases.

Minecraft Outsells Top-Selling Retail Title By Notable Margins

FADE estimates that Minecraft, originally a PC title ported to XBLA sold an estimated 1.7 million units through June 1st. The sales were strong enough to easily beat retail May releases such as "Max Payne 3" and "Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Future Soldier" by notable margins. Additionally, the spectacular performance was enough to generate more revenue in two weeks than any other XBLA release in history, making it the undisputed king of Microsoft's digital format for the Xbox 360 with its $35 million USD cume.

Xbox Live Arcade Healthy and Growing

"Even prior to Minecraft, Xbox Live Arcade had realized massive gains in 2012" noted Benjamin Schlichter, Director of Research and Analysis at FADE. As per the May report, he notes that other key titles saw strong sales during the month, such as the much-anticipated sequel, "Trials HD" and television and novel tie-in "The Walking Dead", both generating millions of dollars in revenue in May. He notes that year-to-date revenues for Xbox Live Arcade are approaching 2011 levels just five months into the year, with $113 million USD in revenues.

Top Five Xbox Live Arcade Games, May 2012 (Ordered by Gross Revenues)

    <*>Minecraft (4J Studios) - 1,739,000 Units Sold ($34.8 Million USD) <*>Trials Evolution (RedLynx, LTD) - 177,000 Units Sold ($2.7 Million USD) <*>The Walking Dead: Episode 1 (Telltale Games) - 270,000 Units Sold ($1.3 Million USD) <*>Fable Heroes (Lionhead Studios) - 92,000 Units Sold ($0.9 Million USD) <*>Sonic 4 Episode 2 (SEGA) - 47,000 Units Sold ($0.7 Million USD)

FADE is a strategic market research and consulting firm focused on electronic entertainment and the emerging download and mobile game markets. With very little information currently available in these markets, FADE allows smaller developers to investigate these new potential sources of revenue and make informed business decisions moving forward. Currently, FADE produces monthly and annual reports for Steam, Xbox Live Arcade, Playstation Network, iOS, Android, and more. For more information, please visit http://www.fadellc.com.??

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