Tuesday, June 16, 2009

PC Game Sales vs Steals

A number of causes have contributed to the decline of pc gaming, the least of which is not pc game piracy. In turn, a number of solutions have been proposed and attempted, some more successful than others. Before commenting on these and other possible solutions, I thought it would be interesting to compare the pc game sales charts to pirated pc game activity. Each week I will present the pc game sales charts, as reported by Shacknews, along with the top 10 most active pc game torrents from a popular torrent hosting site. Hopefully over time certain correlations and patterns will be discerned, in order to help solve the pc game piracy problem. The first installment is provided below.

NPD's Top Ten (by unit, 5/31 - 6/6)

1.The Sims 3
2.The Sims 3 Collector's Edition
3.The Sims 2 Double Deluxe
4.World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King
5.World of Warcraft Battle Chest
6.Spore
7.Real Deal Slots Adventure
8.World of Warcraft
9.Empire: Total War
10.Fallout 3 Operation Anchorage & The Pitt Expansion Pack

Direct2Drive's Top Ten (by unit, 5/31 - 6/6)

1.The Sims 3
2.The Sims 3 (Mac)
3.The Sims 3 (bundle with Prima Guide)
4.Assassin's Creed Director's Cut
5.Civilization IV
6.Delta Force: Xtreme 2
7.The Sims 2 Double Deluxe
8.The Sims 3 (Mac) (bundle with Prima Guide)
9.Mass Effect
10.Civilization IV: The Complete Edition

Steam Top Sellers (by revenue, 5/31 - 6/6)

1.Left 4 Dead
2.Killing Floor
3.Assassin's Creed
4.Team Fortress 2
5.Unreal Tournament 3 Black
6.Penumbra Collector Pack
7.Counter-Strike: Source
8.The Orange Box
9.Freedom Force Pack

Most Active Torrents (6/15)

Seeds Leechers
1.Prototype 2941 18622
2.The Sims 3370810592
3.Grand Theft Auto 45063647
4.Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare12973192
5.X-Men Origins: Wolverine8713015
6.The Sims 2 (incl. all expansion packs)5642657
7.Empire: Total War Special Forces Edition5852556
8.Fallout 315872382
9.Terminator Salvation3782172
10.Pro Evolution Soccer 20095352053

The most active pc game torrent list is presented with the number of Seeds and Leechers. Simply put, Seeds corresponds to the number of people who are uploading or sharing the game, whereas Leechers corresponds to the number of people who are downloading the game. One thing to note is that duplicates were not included in the most active torrent list. For example, the top three most downloaded games could have been three different torrents of Prototype. Only the most downloaded version is provided here, with the rest disregarded. As a result, the presented number of Seeds and Leechers does not necessarily correspond to the total number of pirated game copies.

Further there is a weeklong gap between the sales charts and the torrent chart. Subsequent installments will address that discrepancy.

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