One of the peculiar elements of the Japanese video game store scene is that store managers love to keep blogs reporting on the situation of sales, pre-orders and on the latest purchasing trends they observe. They’re also useful to us because they give a glimpse on an environment that is often difficult to properly gauge. Media Create numbers help, but they’re cold, lack the human element and often show only part of the picture.
This week we got some interesting information about the first days of sale of the PS4 and pre-orders for March from a few sources.
Tencho Kara no Message, written by the store manager of the popular Tokyo-based independent store Games Ma-ya, reports that while Yakuza Ishin is by far the best selling game for the PS4, the rest of the line-up has finally started to move units as well. More importantly, she also mentions that customers satisfactions is high, with those that purchased Sony’s new console coming back and telling her “store manager, it was a good purchase!” or “can’t go back to the PS3 now.”
Chotto Game Suki ga Torimasu mentions that with the console out of stocks she receives a lot of questions from customers on when it’s going to be available again, and the same is happening at competing stores.
Nari Yuki Game Ya Blog has something very interesting to show, in the form of a pie chart with game pre-orders for March divided by platform.
While pre-orders for PS4 are still small due to the limited installed base, but they’re almost all for Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes, since it’s the only big game for Sony’s new console dropping in March in Japan, after the delay of Natural Doctrine to April. The only other is Nobunaga’s Ambition Online, which isn’t exactly expected to break the box office.
On the other side of the console war trench, he also reports that pre-orders for the Xbox 360 version of Titanfall are low, and there he received zero pre-orders for the versions of Metal Gear Solid V and Dark Souls II for Microsoft’s aging console. This isn’t really surprising since we’re talking about Japan, the nation where only about 250 Xbox 360 are sold each week.