As Pixar film Wall-e sees an opening weekend well ahead of street expectations and its former film Ratatouille, analysts are predicting comparable performance for THQ's game version, offsetting risks of the publisher's owned IP failing to meet estimates.
The film's opening weekend brought in $62.5 million, ahead of Ratatouille's $47.2 million and Cars' $60 million, while expectations were in the range of between $50 and 60 million.
Following checks with retail outlets, Stern Agee analyst Arvind Bhatia has predicted combined sales of the game to reach 5.2 million for THQ's fiscal year, up 30 percent over last year's Ratatouille, while its June quarter alone might see more than one million units sold.
While Oppenheimer analyst Shawn Milne notes that while the game's ratings are currently in the 60-70s (ahead of Ratatouille's 55-60s), he adds that rankings are "not as critical for kids and movie-based titles."
Lazard's Colin Sebastian echoed the sentiment, saying rankings are "less relevant as the title is targeting a younger and casual audience."
"Importantly," Sebastian added, "we expect Wall-E to have 'long legs' over the year, with a healthy portion of unit sales likely to come over the Nov/Dec holiday period."
"We continue to believe the biggest risk to full-year estimates is high expectations for sequels of wholly-owned franchises Saints Row
and Red Faction
," Sebastian concluded. "Nonetheless, we believe THQ has an opportunity to recapture some share this year with a larger and more diverse product lineup."