Poor Gears/God of War sales indicate disappointing March at US retail

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Financial services firm Cowen & Company has released estimated sales numbers of console-exclusives Gears of War: Judgment and God of War: Ascension, stating that the typically strong selling franchises appear to have significantly underperformed.”

Games Industry reports that, in an investor note, the company estimated the latest Gears of War title had moved around 425k units at US retail in March. The new God of War effort was estimated at 360k units sold.

"We had expected sales trends to improve in March due to a strong core line-up," wrote the firm. "Two historically strong franchises appear to have significantly underperformed."

The first month sales are well below the series' previous releases – Gears of War 3 sold over 2m in September 2011, and God of War 3 sold 1.1m in March 2010.

On the bright side, Cowen & Company also estimates Tomb Raider and Bioshock Infinite out performed expectations, respectively selling 696k and 665k (with Infinite reaching its total in just 10 days).

Regardless, the results have the company expecting NPD's March report to show software sales down 21 per cent year-on-year, with a 17 per cent slide for total packaged video game sales.