´Metal Gear Solid 4´, still officially a PlayStation3 exclusive, seems to have missed Konami´s sales targets. According to Japanese gaming magazine Famitsu (translated by Joystiq), ´MGS4´ sold 476.334 copies "in its first few days" in Japan.
That figure may make the title "the best-selling PS3 game to date in the region", but the game´s assistant producer Ryan Payton had set a higher mark in a Reuters article late last year:
Payton said the new "Metal Gear Solid" needs to sell over a million copies on the first day it goes on sale due to its costly production, but that may be a tough mark to hit given sluggish PS3 sales.
No definite figures are known for Europe or the US, but judging from the Japanese figures it seems unlikely that Payton´s target was met.
European software sales have been decent according to Chart Track but failed to boost hardware sales.
Why is this so significant? Of course, Konami will use those sales figures as a final decider regarding the exclusivity status of the game, providing the decision has not yet been taken.
Last November, SCEA´s senior vice president of marketing, Peter Dille, talked down the importance of lost exclusives:
From our perspective, as long as the games aren't going exclusive to other platforms, PS3 gamers are not actually losing anything.
That is true, at least for the ten million or so PS3 owners. But what about the masses that have not yet bought a console? To them, MGS4 will not be a reason to buy a PS3. And the Chart Track figures suggest that ´MGS4´ failed as a system seller. So, from an economic point of view, the game seems to have disappointed both Sony and Konami.
EDIT Payton claims he was misquoted. He never mentioned any sales targets, he insists.
As far as ´MGS4´ pushing PS3 hardware sales is concerned, the game did so in Japan. Hardware sales were up by a staggering 64.000 reaching a total of 75.311 in the game´s launch week, before dropping back down to 20.000 units the week after.
In Europe, the game had next to no impact on hardware sales. Reliable numbers for the US will be forthcoming soon.
Source: Famitsu (via Joystiq), Chart Track
Thanks to: Some Guy, Games Industry