News Article

December NPD: Xbox One Hits Back at PS4 in Next-Gen Console War

Posted by Sammy Barker

Sony says it's still winning in North America

Microsoft’s decision to redirect the majority of its Xbox One stock to North America may put the platform holder in positive spirits this evening, as the next generation system bettered the PlayStation 4 in the latest NPD sales report. According to a press release from the Redmond-based manufacturer, the pricey platform performed better than Sony’s super machine throughout the busy December shopping window, though the Japanese giant claims that it’s still on top in the region.

“[The] PS4 remains the cumulative leader for next-gen console sales in the U.S. since the launch on 15th November,” said a clever communications director Dan Race. “We sold every PS4 available at retail in the U.S. and were out of stock in December due to overwhelming consumer demand.” We doubt that the manufacturer will be overly concerned about a minor Microsoft victory, seeing as 2013 sales for the PlayStation maker’s latest console put its install base at 4.2 million units compared to its competitor’s three million units. Still, it shows that it needs to get stock into the region soon.

The new consoles helped to drive hardware sales up by two per cent year-over-year, up to $3.28 billion from $3.21 billion the year prior. This was propelled by a 28 per cent increase in console sales, though software sales still managed to decrease by 17 per cent to $1.28 billion. Unsurprisingly, the top ten consisted of the usual culprits, with Call of Duty: Ghosts, Battlefield 4, Just Dance 2014, Madden NFL 25, and NBA 2K14 fleshing out the top five. Grand Theft Auto V slipped all the way into seventh, but was the overall best-selling game in 2013.

We’ve included the full list of movers and shakers in the space below. While we’re sure that the executives at SCEA will be frustrated by Microsoft’s ability to get more stock on store shelves throughout December, we still reckon that Sony’s global approach will serve it well in the long run. Estimates suggest that it wasn’t far behind its competitor in December – and yet it’s still managed to stomp the Xbox One elsewhere. As already suggested, though, that new stock needs to come in swiftly.

Top Ten New Physical Retail Sales: December 2013

Call Of Duty: Ghosts (360, PS3, XBO, PS4, NWU, PC)
Battlefield 4 (360, XBO, PS4, PS3, PC) 2 Electronic Arts
Just Dance 2014 (WII, 360, NWU, XBO, PS3, PS4)
Madden NFL 25 (360, XBO, PS3, PS4)
NBA 2K14 (360, PS3, PS4, XBO, PC)
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag (360, PS3, PS4, XBO, NWU, PC)
Grand Theft Auto V (360, PS3)
Lego Marvel Super Heroes (360, PS3, 3DS, XBO, PS4, NWU, PSV, PC)
FIFA 14 (360, PS4, XBO, PS3, PSV)
Skylanders SWAP Force (WII, 360, PS3, NWU, 3DS, XBO, PS4)

Annual 2013 Top Ten Games (New Physical Retail)

Grand Theft Auto V (360, PS3)
Call Of Duty: Ghosts (360, PS3, XBO, PS4, PC, NWU)
Madden NFL 25 (360, PS3, PS4, XBO)
Battlefield 4 (360, PS3, XBO, PS4, PC)
Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag (360, PS3, PS4, XBO, NWU, PC)
NBA 2K14 (360, PS3, PS4, XBO, PC)
Call of Duty: Black Ops II (360, PS3, NWU, PC)
Just Dance 2014 (WII, 360, NWU, XBO, PS3, PS4)
Minecraft (360)
Disney Infinity (360, WII, PS3, NWU, 3DS) 10 Disney Interactive Studios

[via joystiq.com, vg247.com, neogaf.com]

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User Comments (32)

Gamer83

#1

Gamer83 said:

Not really surprising, the PS4 is obviously the better deal but the NA market is utterly clueless. The key for Sony is staying close and not getting trounced here like it did last gen.

UNC5052

#2

UNC5052 said:

It's all a matter of stock. I still haven't seen a PS4 on store shelves, and the store clerks that I've talked to all say that there have been a tremendous amount of people inquiring about them. I've seen stacks upon stacks of Xbox Ones, however. My local Best Buy, which is in a relatively small market area compared to many other places in the US, had over 100 PS4s in stock a few weeks ago, and they all sold out on the day they received stock. I'm glad I was able to get mine on launch day.

LDXD

#3

LDXD said:

@UNC5052 this is true I can go into best buy or Walmart right now and get a xbox1 pa4 is still sold out everywhere

Gamer83

#5

Gamer83 said:

@RyoHazuki

There's really no reason for Sony to panic over PS4 getting outsold by X1 in NA because the truth is Sony is never going to be the top dog here again. Too much damage was done to the PS brand's rep in the early days of last-gen and MS did a fantastic job capitalizing on it. Doesn't mean Sony can't win back some gamers though and stay close to MS, and that's the whole key. As long as PS4 isn't outsold 2-1 or more by X1 in NA, then it should be fine in the world wide picture.

BornOfEvil

#7

BornOfEvil said:

The Xbots are certainly happy about this on Facebook, even though the PS4 is still holding a very solid lead in worldwide sales.

Gamer83

#8

Gamer83 said:

Fanboys of any kind will have a field day when their corporate mother claims some kind of victory. I just want to see Sony keep the PS4's momentum up, as long as it sells well enough to stay close to the competition, unlike at the beginning of last gen, then we can be assured good versions of multiplat games. Part of the reason for the shoddy third party ports on PS3 until about 2009 was the fact the system wasn't selling for crap so the developers felt they didn't have to care. If PS4 continues to sell strong, there's no way devs can avoid putting solid ports of their games on the system.

Subie98

#9

Subie98 said:

Here in the US I got my ps4 last friday at a Target. They had three $399.99 units. I was in the store with my wife and chose to look for giggles and I couldn't believe they had some. It was an early bday present from my wife.

Godsire-

#10

Godsire- said:

Microsoft is only winning here in the US because of the lack of PS4's in stores. In the end, all this talk about early sales won't make any difference. PS4 will still outsell Xbox One in the states and is already doing it worldwide. They just need to manufacture. Xbox fans gloating are idiots. It's a lot easier to keep the US stocked with Xbox's when the rest of the world doesn't want your product.

Gamer83

#11

Gamer83 said:

Apparently my comments, which were harmless and in no way meant to offend anybody, ruffled some feathers of a Sony fanboy. I don't know if it was the clown who Sammy had to ban recently or somebody else, but if it's a person with the ability to still post here have the guts to put your idiotic rantings on this website where you can't block people rather than fill up my inbox on PSN, a$$hole. I didn't believe @Rastamadeus when he said there were some true pieces of sh*t in this community but he was right.

Sanquine

#12

Sanquine said:

@Gamer83 Wait... You got a PSN message? I got the same thing because i had a rant about vita ( it needs more exclusives was all i said)

Gamer83

#13

Gamer83 said:

@Sanquine

Yup,and apparently whoever was messaging me blocked me so I didn't have anyway to respond which is why I made my last comment. I have no problem with somebody disagreeing with me but I don't appreciate my psn being spammed and I think I should at least be given the chance to respond to somebody if they're going to cuss me out over something so silly as this.

Sanquine

#14

Sanquine said:

@Gamer83 Hmm there is someone on this community who can't stand some positive words about the competition. ( Got the same thing want to respond but the person already mentioned he would block me.. In his rant why i was so wrong). Some A$$holes on pushsquare

Gamer83

#15

Gamer83 said:

@Sanquine

It's probably the same person. I won't go posting their PSN name here because that would be a b*tch move, I just want that person if they're going to call me out, to do so at a place where we actually can respond to eachother, none of this p*ssy bs on psn where you can make a few comments then block people before they can answer back.

Gemuarto

#16

Gemuarto said:

I think MS will struggle to sell Xones in the future... It has good sales now only thanks to PS4 stock problems and hardcore fans

Visiblemode

#17

Visiblemode said:

@Gamer83 I disagree, The momentum shift is dramatic at this point and it started even before this latest generation, thus helping ps3 surpass the veteran 360 in total lifetime sales. Yes, that is globally, but strong US sales were a huge part of that equation.

Now, with Sony literally immediately selling every PS4 it makes, of course they wouldn't be able to meet holiday demands. (Think: a crowd gathers for an outdoor festival, the sun blazes overhead, two stands open, one selling ice water, the other warm milk. The ice water stand has 500 bottles available, the milk stand has 1000. Both sell out. The headline "Consumers prefer warm milk over ice water, 2 to 1, when temputures rise!" This is utter nonsense. Though, the market is more favourable to xb1 than milk on a hot day, it's just an illustration of manipulation of facts. Supply was clearly the issue in Dec, with adequate xb1 supplies and an absolute lack of Ps4 stock anywhere.)

This myth of North America being untouchable is illogical and historically untrue. One generation of being in second place (third if you count the DS family of handhelds) doesn't make a console brand untouchable. In fact, history has shown, there is no such thing. Every "console king" has eventually sunk, some returning to glory later, others not.

Even hardcore MS loyalists are keeping the rhetoric mild these days. The reason being, with MS having such a weak history with first party content, the early part of this console cycle is going to lean heavily on 3rd party titles which look and play better on Ps4, and despite what some elitists like to think, average people do know that and do care.

Will PS4 dominate the US territory in an unbelievable fashion? Not likely, but then again the MS supported hype that 360 did that was never true to begin with. Hard to say how things will shake out, but easy to say that the PS4 is likely to be in first place in most markets, the US included at the end of the first full year. (In fact they still lead in the US and globally, even now)

artemisthemp

#18

artemisthemp said:

I hope Sony is adding a video edit software in the future, since that's all Xbox One have over PS4.

Visiblemode

#19

Visiblemode said:

@Sanquine worth remembering that actual children are visiting these sites. Great chance that when you are being attacked by someone as immature as a 12 year old, they may actually be one. So yeah, kinda hard to care about the rantings of some silly kid without the maturity to express their opinions logically.

get2sammybAdmin

#20

get2sammyb said:

@Sanquine @Gamer83 Yeah, there's a guy that lurks and opts to send abusive messages through whatever channels he can. Unfortunately, seeing as these tend to fall outside of Push Square, there's nothing we can do. My advice is to report his abusive messages on whatever service he's using (Twitter and PSN) and we just have to hope that he gets bored.

I'm so sorry about this. :(

rastamadeus

#21

rastamadeus said:

@Gamer83 You'll slowly learn I'm always right ;) haha. Yeah, I've had a few PS3 messages off that chump who was banned, even off different PSN accounts. Could tell it was him as the spelling was shocking and the messages stunk of hypocrisy. I take it as a badge of honour really, if you get that kind of abuse off a fanboy it's because they've realised they're wrong but can't do anything but lash out and accept it, like a toddler having a tantrum.

divinelite

#22

divinelite said:

That because us has the best value for ps4
I can just go into any Sony center or local game shop (importer) and take ps4 as low as $650...

I will just wait Sony Asia realize us in Asia is not even wealthier from us...

-CraZed-

#23

-CraZed- said:

@Gamer83 While I agree that the Xbox brand is strong here in the states I have to disagree with your assertion that "Sony is never going to be the top dog here again," and "Too much damage was done to the PS brand's rep in the early days of last-gen."
RIght now Sony is Top Dog and while they were slightly outsold for the month of December their Early launch success is keeping them ahead of the XB1 even here in the States where the PS4 stock levels are still pretty low. Also, the very fact that the PS4 has enjoyed the biggest launch in console history would also suggest that any damage done by the PS3 launch debacle has since eroded.
PS4 isn't just keeping pace with its competition it is out ahead ATM despite the lack of consoles available here.

Grockumus

#24

Grockumus said:

@artemisthemp Yeah, The Playroom is pretty much your only option for anything video, but a video editor like PlayMemories Studio or something like the EyeCreate on PS3 would be really awesome to have at this point.

Gamer83

#25

Gamer83 said:

@get2sammyb

No problem Sammy, I know there's nothing you can do and I appreciate the fact you and your staff have done a great job keeping this community mostly devoid of these kinds of people. My initial comment was made just because I was furious I got three successive hateful messages on one of my personal accounts without even a chance to respond. My hope was that whoever it is, if they are able to respond through this website, that they would do so, so I could argue my point of view as well but apparently that's not going to be the case. Like @Rastamadeus, I'll just laugh it off because it is kind of funny that a comment, not even one that really said anything bad about Sony, could incite such rage.

Gamer83

#26

Gamer83 said:

@-CraZed- @Visiblemode

Well, seeing as I'm invested in PS4 for the long term, I actually hope you guys are right. I'd like to see Sony win in all territories since at that point you're looking at a situation where now developers have no choice but to take advantage of PS4 as the lead platform. It's just that with NA being so shooter happy and MS signing deals with big third parties for exclusives like Titanfall which has a chance to be huge, it still gives MS an edge. Despite being $100 more, the X1 is selling very well so it seems like it will be a struggle for Sony to win out in this market in the end. But as I posted before, just stay close. As long as PS4 isn't outsold 2-1 like PS3 was, the worldwide picture looks that much better if Sony can keep the territories it usually wins.

SimonAdebisi

#27

SimonAdebisi said:

@Gamer83 'don't panic don't panic' was sarcasm. If you've ever seen 'dads army' I imagine not. Then you'd understand (old British TV) I have to completely disagree. The ps4 is a better and cheaper console. Its only a matter of time before the Xbox is overtaken. My honest opinion is that Xbox has already been demoted for this gen and that long term sale will prove this in the next 12 to 24 months.

Scollurio

#29

Scollurio said:

1st. Who gives a flying f... frog?
2nd. What is out of stock can't be sold.
3rd. That is all.

Scollurio

#31

Scollurio said:

Right. My point being, Im happy with my console, I don't care what other people are playing with. Does it make me feel better knowing that the PS4 sells better than the Xbox one? No it doesn't, even though I didn't get the whole TV-thing appeal of the Xbox one in the first place. Everything is digital and has an app to watch content, why even bother squeezing your whatever-TV-source through your console... guess its made for americans...

Gamer83

#32

Gamer83 said:

@RyoHazuki

X1 hasn't been sold out but that's because MS has done a good job keeping stores stocked. From talking to friends who work retail though, the console is selling at a very strong pace. PS4 is selling well too but Sony is obviously more worried about the global picture where right now it seems MS wants to get a stranglehold on its strongest territory. Sammy wrote another article which focuses a little on the different strategies that was an interesting read.

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