Gamers just aren't feeling the market right now -- at least in the U.S. -- with sales declining in recent weeks, and NPD citing that the video game market has dropped a massive 16%
in the previous month. Calculating hardware, software, and accessories, NPD claims the worst of it is actually over and that the holiday season will be a boon to the market.
That is great news for companies like Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo, who have seen a 25% decrease in hardware sales from a year ago. Game developers have it just as bad, with software sales down 15%. Only one segment of the video game market has actually increased -- accessories. That's an interesting footnote in an otherwise dismal period for the gaming market, as it can be interpreted in many ways.
Strong accessories sales may indicate that gamers are satisfied with the titles they already have, so they are more likely to buy additions for their games and consoles. On the flipside, they may just be displeased with recent releases and are spending their money elsewhere. Neither situation will keep manufacturers and developers happy, though, as they bank on a substantial improvement across the board over the next few months.
Sony has already demonstrated this with the hefty price drop in the PS3, and Microsoft has continued to nurture the Xbox's evolution. Meanwhile, many big-name developers are in heavy preparation for the coming months.