PS2 Blows Xbox 360 Away...

june 12, 2006

...Well, not in the "shiny graphics department", but in the sales department. Since the Xbox 360 was released, it has sold an average of 246,000 units a month. That is compared with the 473,000 PS2s that were sold a month, on average, during the same period of time. Yes, we have to take into account that the Xbox 360 had "shortages" during this period, but it still does not bode well for a next-gen console to be outsold by a current-gen console. My guess to the strong PS2 sales? Price. A Xbox 360 Core system is $300. An extra controller is $50. A memory card (since this is the Core system) is $40. Add two games at $60 a piece and the grand total comes to: $510. A PS2 system is $130. And extra controller is $25. A memory card is $25. Add two games at $40 a piece and the grand total comes to: $220. For parents and kids, the Xbox 360 sounds great and has all that shimmery goodness of a "next-gen" box. But, in reality the PS2 plays the same kinds of games and you can have the same amount of fun -- at less than half the price. A lot of titles are still available cross platform, so a game for the Xbox 360 (like Hitman) is available on the PS2 -- but, the Xbox 360 game costs $60, while the PS2 version costs $40. Sure, the game may not be as shiney on the PS2 as it is on the Xbox 360, but hey: Deep inside, it is still the same game. And look at it this way from a parent's point of view: For the cost of the above Xbox 360 bundle, a family can get the same thing for the PS2 but with nine games instead of two. The PS2 still has a long life ahead of it as the cost of playing games on it continue to drop. With a huge install base of 100 million PS2s in the world, publishers would be stupid if they tried to ignore the platform as it releases titles. It is surprising to see that the PS2 is holding on so well against the Xbox 360. But, it is even more surprising to see that the Xbox 360 is not selling like gang-busters as Microsoft thought it would.