Jason Kraft & Chris Kwak (of the Susquehanna Group) have released a report analyzing the potential impact of lower next-gen game sales, lower current-gen game sales, and lower current-gen game prices on the major publishers. They call the report an analysis of the potential “disaster scenarios” caused by a PS3 delay, but that’s really just sensationalism, and it actually reduces the usefulness of the report (which could apply equally well to scenarios in which the PS3 ships but doesn’t sell due to price issues, hardware glitch issues, etc). And the report doesn’t account for scenarios in which the 360 begins to outperform, and/or the Nintendo Revolution explodes out the gate (thus helping to compensate for failures on the PS3 front). These are serious consideration! So basically, all the report really tells you is: “Which publisher(s) would be hurt the most if the next-gen console market failed to take off in 2006.” Which is worth knowing, if not terribly difficult to figure out.
Having made my reservations about this clear, here are the conclusions of the report:
- Lower-than-expected next-gen game sales would create the most pain for EA and Activision, which have the most exposure to next-gen. THQ is best insulated (thanks to its focus on portables).
- Lower-than-expected current-gen game sales would hurt Take-Two most.
- Lower-than-expected current-gen game prices would also hurt Take-Two the most.
If you want the details, I believe they still offer copies of their reports for free to anyone who asks. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.