From the day of the PS3's launch, Sony have pursued a bold strategy of constantly launching new, original IP as exclusive titles on the console. But while it's a move that should be applauded on principle, it's just not translating into sales.
Number-cruncher Matt Matthews has, in a report over on GameSetWatch, detailed the North American sales performance of Sony's new, exclusive titles, revealing a lineup of games that are two-headed beasts: somehow managing to consistently find critical success while being, relative to their exposure and advertising backing, commercial flops.
Excluding games sold as part of hardware bundles, for example, only a single game published by Sony on the PS3 has sold over a million copies at retail, and that's the original Resistance. LittleBigPlanet is close to this figure, but many other high-profile releases - such as Killzone 2, Resistance 2 and Uncharted - are not.
The numbers look even worse compared to sales for exclusive titles on other platforms. Gears of War sold a million units in a month on the 360. Gears 2 sold 1.5 million in the same amount of time. Smash Bros has sold over 4 million units on the Wii, and Mario Kart over six million.
So what gives? Matthews raises the possibility that Sony put too much faith in new stuff. Rather than having Insomniac and Naughty Dog release Ratchet & Clank and Jak & Daxter games, which would have sold, Sony let them first release all-new titles, Resistance and Uncharted, neither of which have so far matched the sales or pulling power of their better-known PS2 platformers.
We're also only seeing proper releases in Sony's two biggest series - God of War and Gran Turismo - this year. 2009. Three years after the console was first released. They should perform better than any of the above titles, but you have to wonder whether it has been wise of Sony to release nothing but original titles to date (Killzone aside), when a God of War or two by now may have spurred sales of both PS3 hardware and software. Analysis: Was Using Original IP The Best Idea For Sony's PS3 Strategy? [GameSetWatch]