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Record Video Game Sales Predicted for 2002

21 Feb, 2002 By: Brendan Howard

The video game industry looks poised for impressive growth in the next few years, according to a new report from interactive entertainment research firm DFC Intelligence.

Annual unit sales of video games and PC games in the United States are expected to grow more than 40 percent from 2001 to 2006, according to DFC. By 2006, combined U.S. sales of the Sony PlayStation 2, the Microsoft Xbox and the Nintendo GameCube should reach more than 60 million units.

"The successful introduction of four new game systems in 2000 and 2001 meant that the industry was able to avoid the major downturn in sales that has occurred in past platform transitions," said DFC president David Cole.

The picture isn't all rosy, however. The report predicts higher sales for some platforms, and its best- and worst-case scenarios have to take into account the possible impact of new systems expected to be released between 2004 and 2006. The report also notes that as unit sales continue to rise, so do the costs of development and marketing.

"The game business is starting to look like the movie industry," said Cole. "This has become a high-risk/high-reward industry where a handful of winners must make up for the money lost on the majority of products."

In addition to forecasting, the new 800-page report titled The U.S. Market for Video Games and Interactive Electronic Entertainment looks at business challenges, industry economics, retail and online distribution, consumer profiles, game genres and other industry trends through 2006.

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