Saturday, October 8, 2011

DUST 514: A Possible Fear

A Pessimistic Analysis

As revolutionary as the concept of Dust 514 is, I fear there are many factors that could hold the game back from being the success that it deserves to be.
One of these factors is that this is a PS3 exclusive shooter. I'm not simply talking about the obvious fact that being on more platforms will increase sales, but specifically the problems of PS3 platform. I love my PS3, but I have a theory about why Xbox360 shooters do better than PS3 shooters in sales. The theory is basically this; PS3 has so many exclusive shooters that the sales get really divided among the many titles, so none of the PS3 shooters get nearly as much individual sales as any to Xbox360 shooters.

2 week sales of recent exclusive shooters (from vgchartz)
Halo: Reach - 4.87 million
gears of war 3 - 3.71 million
Killzone 3 - 821.9 thousand
Resistance 3 - 350.49 thousand
Socom 4 - 253.37 thousand
MAG - 458.25 thousand
Uncharted 2 - 1.9 million (best sales, though still behind top Xbox60 shooters in sales)

Needless to say, I'm not exactly expecting amazing sales for this game. I'm hoping I will be proven wrong, and that Dust 514 will sell millions very fast and become a hit the way Uncharted 2 was. The reason I worry about sales is not because I'm someone who measures the greatness of a game by its sales, but because having a strong player base really does matter, and even more so in a MMO where players drive the universe and economy. Killzone 3 is an example of one of the better selling exclusive PS3 shooter, and I often notice a severe lack of players at times when my brother plays it. Dust 514 will have far more players per game than Killzone 3, making the importance of a decent player base even more important. It is also a new IP which makes it even more challenging to acquire such a player base.
There is a glimmer of hope though. The concept of a persistent shooter could be so compelling that buyers take the risk. The fact that it will be a downloadable shooter makes it very accessible since players won't have to physically get up and go to a store. And lastly, the "cover charge" price is very cheap.


  1. Not much of a risk on the buyer's part. The initial cost is going to be at a fraction of the cost of initial pricing for new retail games. I wouldn't be surprised if it was like 20 bucks, which, if it lives up to the quality of mainstream blockbusters, won't be a hard sell. This is amplified by the gimmicks and future vision features that CCP promises.

  2. good article. those numbers are telling. too many average shooters in my opinion. Dust will be a great shooter.

  3. i think it wont sell as much as a mainstream shooter, but when it goes free 2 play i think allot more people are going to take intrest in this game....
    if its good =)

  4. 20 bucks isnt much but if no one knows about the game they still wont buy it. Sony/CCP NEEDS to market the game. Im sick and tired of sony never marketing their games properly. Games like these NEED a large consistent player base or its MAG all over again waiting 15+ mins to get a match

  5. You also must consider 1 year sales, playstation is really a worldwide brand, first 2 weeks in the usa is not a fair assemblymen of how a game sells

  6. xbox really sells!

  7. The problem is that xbox wouldn't allow Dust to link up to the Eve servers, which would negate the entire 'persistent shooter' part of the game.

    Leave it to microsoft to botch a great partnership...