Platform holders respond to NPD figures

We are teh Winz0rs, says everyone.

Following the announcement of North American videogames sales figures for May, all three platform holders have given themselves a big old pat on the back.

Nintendo probably deserves one, having actually sold more consoles than anybody else. Last month the Wii made up 63 per cent of all current-gen consoles sold, while the DS took a 71 per cent share of the handheld market. Lifetime sales figures for Wii and DS now stand at 10.2 million and 20 million respectively.

Of the top 30 best-selling games sold in May, 19 were for Nintendo systems. GTA IV may have topped the chart, but Mario Kart Wii was in second place with Wii Fit in third. Wii Play also did well - 295,000 copies were sold, bringing the lifetime total to 5.8 million.

"The Wii Wheel and Wii Balance Board accessories make game play fun for new gamers while presenting new challenges for those who have been playing a long time," said sales executive Cammie Dunaway, polishing the diamonds on the soles of her shoes.

Ignoring the fact Nintendo now owns most of the money in the world, Sony was quick to stick its tongue out at Microsoft. The company's statement said PS3 sales "eclipsed" those of Xbox 360, with a lead of more than 22,000 units sold.

Year-on-year, PS3 sales growth stood at 155 per cent. Software sales were also up, reaching 1.26m units during May - an increase of 234 per cent. And while more copies of GTA IV were sold for 360, Sony pointed out that more than 32 per cent of US PS3 owners bought the game. This means the attach rate was 6 per cent higher.

Between the start of January and the end of May, the PlayStation brand has generated nearly USD 2.27 billion in revenue - that's 46 per cent higher than Microsoft, according to Sony. For May only the figure stood at USD 133 million, 98 per cent higher than Microsoft.

More than 20 million pieces of content were downloaded from the PSN Store during May, including 11.6 million in North America. In total, there are now over 9 million registered PSN accounts worldwide and more than 160 million pieces of content have been downloaded.

Sony described PSP sales for May as "solid", and revealed PS2 sales were up 6.7 per cent over the previous month.

"The media have hailed 2008 as the year of the PS3, and with solid sales and growth opportunities ahead, we feel consumers are saying the same," said Sony bossman Jack Tretton.

Your Mum, said Microsoft, pointing out that Xbox 360 now has a global installed base of more than 19 million. It also has a better attach rate than any other console, with 7.7 games sold per machine.

Of the 25 top-selling first-party franchises, 21 sell best on Xbox 360. That includes GTA IV - 871,000 units have been sold for Microsoft's console, which means the Xbox 360 game is outselling "the other platform's" version by a ratio of two to one.

More third-party games are sold for Xbox 360 than other consoles, with USD 110 million in game sales generated during May. In this generation, 59 per cent of third-party games sold have been for 360.

And besides, Microsoft went on, gamers like hanging out with us best. The company quoted the results of a Nielsen survey that found gamers aged between 10 and 26 spend an average of 75 hours per month playing Xbox 360, compared to 53 hours playing PS3. The figure for Wii was 35 hours.

And besides and besides, the battle's not over yet. "We still have quite a few aces up our sleeve," the company's statement ends. "See you at E3 next month!"

It's not known whether "up our sleeve" is a reference to a new tattoo as per previous E3s, but perhaps not seeing as Peter Moore's left. Rumours Shane Kim will drop his trousers to reveal VIVA PINATA has been stamped across his buttocks, with an interesting interpretation of the dot over the second 'i', are completely made up.

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