Game trade-ins may be a games publisher and developer bugaboo, but it looks like they may also be a bellwether of customer discontent when it comes to Sony’s ongoing PlayStation Network outage.
Case in point, games-mag Edge says UK-based retailers are reporting a rise in PS3 console trade-ins for Xbox 360s. Edge’s source also says PSN point card sales are down (actually kind of a no-brainer, that), and that an increasing number of gamers are buying alternative (non-PS3) versions of multiplatform games.
One store manager said the outage’s first week showed little PS3 sales impact, but that thereafter his store had seen “an increase of over 200 per cent on PS3 consoles being traded in, split almost 50/50 between those trading for cash and those taking a 360 instead.”
Edge‘s list of sources telling the same tale continues and ranges from corporate chains to indie resellers. Not a huge surprise, but grim news, any way you spin it.
The magazine corroborates its ad hoc phone surveys with actual sales data, citing UK selling trends that shows recent spikes in Xbox 360 sales for multi-platform titles (like Call of Duty: Black Ops) and commensurate PS3 sales declines.
Sales data aside, the phone call claims may or may not be indicative of broader trends, and Edge admits the small sample’s hardly scientific. What’s more, they surmise it’s still just online-fixated gamers jumping ship. But as we know, the PlayStation Network has (or should we say had?) some 77 million members worldwide. It’s anyone’s guess how many of those are fixated enough to part ways over the three-weeks-and-counting outage.