Retail buyers are banking on FIFA and Xbox One S to revitalise a struggling physical games market.
Last week's major releases - including the new PS4 and PES 2017 - failed to rejuvenate the sector after a summer of low sales.
No Man's Sky was a bright spot in a difficult period for boxed games, which included the worst sales month on record in July, and the lowest weekly figure for physical games - 3.9m was generated in the week ending September 10th, over half a million below the previous all-time low [GfK figures).
Sales were expected to improve last week with the arrival of an updated PS4, plus seven new games. Yet fewer than 85,000 new boxed releases were sold for the week ending September 17th.
But leading retailers are expecting a huge improvement over the coming weeks thanks to the Xbox One S launch and arrival of FIFA 17. Furthermore, retailers tell MCV that early pre-orders of the PS4 Pro in November are ‘extremely positive'.
Xbox One S interest seems high. We may see 25,000 sales Week One,” said one leading games retail boss. FIFA 17 pre-orders are also ahead of the curve our end.”