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Nintendo winning US hardware war

Xbox 360 in fifth, but lots of games sold.

NPD's US hardware sales figures for the month of February have revealed Nintendo is winning, you will be shocked and stunned to hear.

More than 587,000 DS units were shifted during the month - that's more than twice the number of PSPs sold (243,000).

The Wii was in second place with 432,000 units shifted. The PlayStation 2 outsold its big brother with more than 351,000 units snapped up compared to the PS3's 280,000. Xbox 360 was in fifth place, racking up sales of 254,000 consoles.

But Microsoft will have been cheered up by news that the two best-selling games of the month, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and Devil May Cry 4, were both on Xbox 360. Wii Play came in at No. 3 followed by the PS3 version of DMC4.

In fifth place was Guitar Hero III for Wii, while the PS2 version made it to No. 9. Mario & Sonic at the Olympics DS was at six, followed by more Xbox 360 games - Lost Odyssey and Turok - at seven and eight. The Xbox 360 version of Rock Band rounded off the chart at No. 10.

See, said Microsoft, everyone likes us really, pointing out that USD 332 million was spent on Xbox 360 games and consoles during February - compared to USD 283 million on Wii and USD 235 million on PS3. And besides, the company claimed, again, stock shortages meant it didn't have enough machines to sell.

The number of Americans who own an Xbox 360 has now reached 9.6 million. The figure for Wii stands at 8.1 million while for PS3 it's 3.8 million - though it's worth remembering that Microsoft's console had a head start.

People are buying more games for 360, all the same; the attach rate is now 7.2 games per console, nearly double the rate for Nintendo and Sony's machines.

Who cares, said Sony, we sold 10 per cent more consoles than you, and year-on-year sales growth is up 120 per cent. According to bossman Jack Tretton, "Consumers are recognising the tremendous value of PS3 and we believe that Blu-ray becoming the high-def format of choice was the tipping point for many consumers."

He reckons the release of titles like Gran Turismo 5 Prologue, Metal Gear Solid 4 and Grand Theft Auto IV will make this "the year for PS3".

Hahaha whatever said Nintendo, having kicked both Sony and Microsoft's faces off in no uncertain terms. "Our momentum has not let up since the holidays and we expect it to continue throughout the year," observed Nintendo of America exec Cammie Dunaway.

"We have the industry's strongest line-up of games for everyone from core to casual gamers." And the strongest lineup of gold bars, diamond rings and luxury yachts, of course.

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Ellie Gibson


Ellie spent nearly a decade working at Eurogamer, specialising in hard-hitting executive interviews and nob jokes. These days she does a comedy show and podcast. She pops back now and again to write the odd article and steal our biscuits.