magazine, sister publication to Gamasutra and leading U.S. video game trade magazine, has revealed its 2006 Top 20 Publishers list in the October 2006 issue of the magazine, and the ranking is again topped by veteran publisher Electronic Arts.
The article ranks the top 20 video game publishers concretely by factoring annual revenue figures, average aggregated review scores, number of releases, and anonymous developer surveys regarding milestone payments, pay and perks, and producer quality, and has been running since 2003.
In the exclusively compiled chart, Electronic Arts made its fourth appearance at the top of the heap, in spite of a fourth quarter 2006 earnings loss, and labor practices-related lawsuit settlements. Nonetheless, the largest number of releases and highest revenue of any publisher, alongside solid feedback ratings and above-average review score led EA to the top again.
Nintendo moved up to second place on the list this year, up from fourth, due to strong DS software sales, with multiple million-sellers such as Nintendogs
and New Super Mario Bros.
The company also boasted significantly more releases than last year. Nintendo also boasted the highest scores for milestone payments and producers this year, helping propel the company up the list.
Activision was bumped from second to third by Nintendo’s strong showing, but the company is certainly no slouch, as its Call of Duty
and Tony Hawk
series continued to perform very well. The company’s release count decreased somewhat, but the slight decrease in quantity was replaced by quality, with a higher average review score coming through for the company.
Sony moved up one spot to fourth place this year, due to stronger PSP game sales in North America, and a higher average review score, bolstered by critical hits such as Shadow of the Colossus
. Weighing in at number five this year was Take-Two, bolstered by its Grand Theft Auto
powerhouse in terms of revenue, in spite of controversy and fading legal threats. Healthy sales of the co-published The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
didn’t hurt the company's rise either.
The overall top ten list compiled by the magazine, with the company's 2005 ranking in parentheses, is as follows:
1. (1.) Electronic Arts
2. (4.) Nintendo
3. (2.) Activision
4. (5.) Sony Computer Entertainment
5. (10.) Take-Two
6. (3.) Microsoft
7. (8.) THQ
8. (6.) Ubisoft
9. (7.) Konami
10. (9.) Sega Sammy Holdings
The full 2006 Top 20 Publishers listing, including statistics, analysis on all of the Top 20, and lots more background, is available in the October 2006 issue of Game Developer magazine
, for which subscription copies have been sent out - the magazine will be available for digital download later this week.
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