Gamescom 2014: Xbox Gambles And Other Big Stories

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Gamescom has come and gone and it has been a very interesting week, to say the least. From the big players and the small, the news has been wide and varied regarding the success of the consoles in general as well as the growing nature of the independent scene. So lets look at some of the biggest news of the show.

1. Sony has crossed 10 million units sold through of the PS4

This is an important story because much of the talk around the video game industry has been about the growth of PC and decline of consoles. However, the strength of the PS4’s sales are showing that maybe the last generation lasted so long it caused a bit of stagnation. For a point of reference, Apple TV grew to be Apple’s fastest growing sector in 2013 with 10 million units sold. PS4 has crossed that threshold in nine months.

The set top box industry is an interesting comparison. As the ubiquitous nature of streaming has grown, set top boxes and smart TVs have been growing in popularity. Much of that was looked at as the demise of console gaming, much like smartphones is looked at as the downfall of mobile gaming. Thus far, the PS4 and the other new consoles have been on a good pace despite these thoughts of a downgraded market. Hopefully, this pace can continue for some time and the console gaming industry remains healthy.

2. Microsoft is making big moves to bring in more Xbox One gamers

Outside of the big news of Tomb Raider exclusivity, Microsoft has plenty of bundles incoming featuring Madden 15, FIFA 15, Sunset Overdrive with a white Xbox One, and the Call of Duty custom skin 1 TB Xbox One. They’ve also announced the Halo Channel, a place to watch, play, and interact with all things Halo on the Xbox One, including their Xbox original program Halo: Nightfall. Let’s address the biggest news though. Microsoft has taken a rather large gamble; there’s no way Tomb Raider came cheap, by purchasing timed exclusivity of the Tomb Raider games. We don’t know the specifics of the deal. However, the gamble here comes into the specifics of the deal.

If this exclusivity isn’t substantial to bring in crossover gamers, it could backfire and be a lot of money spent that doesn’t truly add value to their brand. If the deal works to bring exclusivity to Tomb Raider on consoles, this could be a huge get that may get some to consider an Xbox One as they become impatient to play the game. The current backlash to the deal of course gives Microsoft pause, but by next year maybe more will be coming around to the idea of buying an Xbox One and this will push them over the edge.