Capcom hopes for handheld hits
Capcom plans to release 10 PSP and three DS games by the end of March 2006.
TOKYO–In its latest company profile report, Capcom has disclosed it plans to release a total of 10 games for the PlayStation Portable and three for the Nintendo DS during the current business year started April 1, 2005. Five of these games have already been announced, and the PSP editions of Viewtiful Joe and Devil May Cry could see the light of day before 2006. Further information should become available as the September Tokyo Game Show approaches.
Capcom plans to sell 1.45 million PSP games during this business year, which is nearly 10 times the volume it sold by the end of March 2005. Those sales were of the company’s only current PSP offering, Vampire Chronicle: The Chaos Tower. The game sold a total of 150,000 copies by April 1, 2005.
With only three games in development for the DS, it seems clear that Capcom has decided to favor the PSP in its plans for the future. All three of Capcom’s upcoming DS games have already been announced: Viewtiful Joe DS, Mega Man Battle Network, and Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney. Capcom plans to sell half a million DS games during the current business year. These three titles will be the first offerings for the DS from Capcom.
The company expects a 3.4-million-unit increase in sales of its PlayStation 2 games, but it also forecasts a massive decline in sales of its games for Nintendo platforms. Capcom expects a net profit of 3.9 billion yen ($36.3 million) for the current business year. The company made 3.6 billion yen ($33.5 million) during the business year ended March 31, 2005.
The rest of Capcom’s FY 2005 sales projections are listed below.
It would seem that Capcom has all but written Nintendo off, from home consoles to handhelds. It’s kind of perplexing to wonder why this is the case, when the Battle Network series makes Capcom a mint on the GBA, DS has sold more hardware than PSP and Resident Evil 4, despite their boneheaded decision to undermine its GC sales, has sold quite respectably (and VJ1/2 sold double, triple, quadruple on the Gamecube).
Let us have a look at some telling figures now.
FY 2004 Sales Results (4/1/2004 - 3/31/2005)
PlayStation 2 - 40 titles, 7.3 million copies
GameCube - five titles, 2 million copies
Xbox - seven titles, 250,000 copies
Game Boy Advance - seven titles, 3.4 million copies
PC & Misc. - 11 titles, 400,000 copies
FY 2005 Sales Estimates (4/01/2005 - 3/31/2006)
PlayStation 2 - 55 titles, 10.7 million copies
GameCube - four titles, 350,000 copies
Xbox - eight titles, 750,000 copies
Game Boy Advance - four titles, 1.25 million copies
PC & Misc. - zero titles, zero copies
The PS2 sold around 182,500 units per game in FY 2004, while the Gamecube sold 400,000 units per game and the Xbox sold 35,751 units per game. GBA sold 486,000 units per game.
Obviously the answer is to release more of those PS2 titles AND more XBox titles, but the Gamecube is getting a cut and the sales estimates are shorting Gamecube software sales[/sarcasm]. I’d bet money that the Gamecube exceeds their expectations and the PS2 and XBox fall far short. Lets not forget that, despite the announcement of the Gameboy Micro (which will sell like hotcakes), Capcom is cutting back both GBA and DS development and shorting their GBA software forecast, which will probably be far exceeded.
I guess I don’t have a head for business, because this stuff doesn’t make a lick of sense to me. Pound for pound, titles that are developed for Nintendo platforms are more profitable than their PS2 counterparts and a helluva lot more profitable than their XBox counterparts. Meanwhile, Capcom rakes in a ton of cash off of Nintendo’s portables.
Why go in the opposite direction?
A lot of you guys are in the business. Please translate these decisions into something that a rational human being can understand.