The numbers are in... sort of. The new January 2014 data from the NPD Group has revealed that the PlayStation 4 is still the top selling console of the first quarter of 2014 and it has outsold the Xbox One 2-to-1 in Microsoft's home territory.
The NPD numbers are sketchy, to say the least, but several game sites paint from an easel that you can almost use to piece together the full sales painting. So what does the painting say? Well, first up, retail brought in $664 million in sales, down 21% from the previous year. The top 10 games of January are as follows:
1. Call of Duty: Ghosts (360, PS3, Xbox One, PS4, Wii U, PC)
2. NBA 2K14 (PS4, 360, Xbox One, PS3, PC)
3. Battlefield 4 (PS4, Xbox One, 360, PS3, PC)
4. Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag (360, PS4, Xbox One, PS3, Wii U, PC)
5. Grand Theft Auto V (360, PS3)
6. Madden NFL 25 (PS4, Xbox One, 360, PS3)
7. Minecraft (360)
8. FIFA 14 (PS4, Xbox One, PS3, 360, Vita)
9. Lego Marvel Super Heroes (360, Xbox One, PS3, PS4, 3DS, Wii U, Vita, PC)
10. Tomb Raider (PS4, Xbox One, 360, PS3)
Now let's get to the real meat and potatoes; enough with the foreplay, it's time to whip off the sheets and see what's underneath those sexy hardware sales.
According to IGN they're reporting that Microsoft opted out of revealing actual numbers for the Xbox One sales, but only noted that...
[The Xbox One units] “have sold at a rate of 2.29 times faster than Xbox 360 in the U.S. in the same timeframe for the first three months on the market.”
That's some useless stat right there. But the reason they skipped out on releasing retail data was because Sony has been laying the smack down on the Micro 'S.'
According to Venture Beat, things were not in Microsoft's favor...
“We reached out to Microsoft for its sales result, but it declined to comment. Nintendo also did not update its hardware numbers. Sony, however, confirmed that the PS4 doubled Xbox One’s sales.”
When in doubt, refer to VGChartz; and according to VGCharts the Xbox One seems to have moved more than 500,000 units since Microsoft's last report, where-as the PS4 is up by a million units, rocking 5.1 million as their install base.
Is that some sort of bad omen? Being underneath the Atari 7800? A sign that the Xbox One is relegated to resolutions at 720p, perhaps? Well, that's another article for another time (but probably not far off given how often news about the Xbox 720 surfaces).
Anyway, Sony spokesman Guy Longworth didn't hold anything back, firing shots like New Year's eve in Chicago, saying...
“Demand for PlayStation 4 remains incredibly strong as it was No. 1 in sales for next-gen consoles in January, nearly doubling the nearest next-gen competitor, and remains the cumulative leader, according to today’s NPD report,” .... ”Although PS4 remains severely constrained at retail, we are working hard to refresh supply as quickly as possible.”
This is not good for the Xbox One, especially given that the Sony PlayStation 4 has not yet launched in Japan, where it's further expected to dominate and move another million or so units before the end of spring.
Right now, though, it looks like Sony may be gunning for the current leader of the eighth gen race, the Nintendo Wii U.
Iwata and crew aren't taking this lying down, though, and they recently held a Nintendo Direct to keep the masses entertained and those sales numbers steady.
As for Microsoft... they're really going to have to go all-in on Titanfall in March, if they hope to turn the tide, because right now Sony is running the show the world around. That Titanfall -themed console is probably looking real good right about now, eh?