Local bricks-and-mortar retail has shrunk by 19 per cent compared to this time last year, reports market intelligence agency NPD Group.
Total retail sales for the first six months of 2012 reached $465.6 million compared to $578.6 million over the same period in 2011.
Speaking exclusively with MCV Pacific, NPD’s Andrew Milgate said, “Console Hardware suffered the largest dollar decline, due to the average price of hardware dropping $51. This lower price led to a growth in units for HD consoles, in particular PlayStation 3 which saw a double digit increase.”
Some of the overall decline can be attributed to the lower recommended retail price for AAA boxed games, reports MCV, noting that the average RRP for such products has come down 8 per cent since 2011.
“One of the reasons for the decline was a lack of new software released in the first half compared to last year,” continues Milgate. “The number of new software SKUs in the market was down 30%, which was similar to the drop in new releases in the US (-34%).”
Bright spots include the growth of the PC platform, which is up 24 per cent on the first six months of 2011, in part due to sales of Diablo III, the top-selling game of 2012 so far.