Even though growth in the industry is likely to slow from 19 percent to 6.7 percent, analyst Mike Hickey of Janco Partners says U.S. video game industry revenues will be worth over 20 billion dollars by the end of 2009.
"We continue to believe video games offer an exceedingly strong value proposition for consumers in the current economic malaise, and should continue to over index other forms of entertainment," Hickey writes, adding, "Continued success of the Wii and DS platforms are critical for CY09 growth, in our view."
However, it's not all super good news. According to the research, we can expect profits from hardware sales to drop 5.4 percent to $7.4 billion. It has nothing to do with people not buying consoles. The loss of profits may come because of console price drops.
Update: Numbers are funny things. A press release from industry lobby group the Entertainment Software Association, says that the U.S. game industry is already worth $21 billion. Specifically: "Overall computer and video game industry hardware, software and peripheral sales in 2008" are worth over $21 billion. Both the Janco Partners and the ESA got their research from the NPD Group, so the discrepancy in amounts may be from a difference in opinion of what, exactly, constitutes the U.S. Video Game business.
The research lists specific software titles that will drive 2009 sales, including unannounced titles, such as the Beatles music game and Guitar Hero V! Below is the list.
- Guitar Hero: Metallica
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
- Guitar Hero V
- Godfather II
- Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
- Mass Effect 2
- The Beatles
- Grand Theft Auto IV: The Lost and Damned
- GTA: Chinatown Wars
- Bioshock 2
- Mafia II
- UFC 2009 Undisputed
- Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Conviction
- Red Steel 2
- Assassin’s Creed 2
- F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin
- Street Fighter IV
- Killzone 2
- Halo Wars
- Resident Evil 5
- Halo 3: ODST
- God of War III
Personally, I don't think Mafia II or The Godfather II are going to be super-huge sellers, and seriously, Red Steel 2? Did you play the first one? I also wonder if Chinatown Wars is going to have the huge sales numbers some think. Sure, it's a handheld GTA game, and there 75 billion people with a Nintendo DS, but are the users of the DS too young to buy the game in huge numbers?