[GamerBytes editor Ryan Langley examines March 2010's PlayStation Network debuts and continuing successes, using leaderboard data to find out what digital PSN titles are faring well as 2010 progresses.]
While Microsoft had the Xbox Live Block Party in March, as also analyzed by us, the PlayStation Network was having a quiet get together -- nothing particularly flashy, but including a few neat PSN digital exclusives like Wakeboarding HD, Hamster Ball, Section 8 and Anarchy: Rush Hour.
We unfortunately did not get a Top 10 of PlayStation Network downloads this month, but we do still have Leaderboard statistics for a selection of popular titles for a look at well games are selling on the service.
There were 8 new releases for March on the PlayStation Network. But unfortunately, we’re only able to follow 3 of them -- Feeding Frenzy 2, Wakeboarding HD and Hamster Ball. The releases of Groovin’ Blocks, Mega Man 10, Anarchy: Rush Hour, Section 8 and the Blue Toad Murder Files episodes either have Leaderboards we cannot follow, or don’t have them at all. A real disappointment -- many of these titles would greatly benefit from a real Leaderboard structure.
Feeding Frenzy 2 was the first title we could follow on the calendar, and was released on the 11th of March in the United States (it has yet to be released in Europe). During its three weeks of release, it was able to pick up 14,894 players to its paid-only Leaderboards.
Hamster Ball was only released in the United States and only for a week, but during that time the game was able to add just 2,722 names to the Leaderboards. Finally, Wakeboarding HD was released on the 18th in Europe and 25th in America, and it added 6,166 players to its Leaderboards, and at $15.
Overall, there wasn't a big user turnout for new games on the PlayStation Network, and certainly not as big as those in the Block Party promotion over on Xbox Live Arcade -- but to a certain extent, that's expected with the relative lack of promotion.
First of all an apology – over these past few months we had been discussing the Leaderboard statistics for both UNO and Tank Battles from Gameloft. We now realize that these statistics actually include anyone who has played the game - both via the trial and through the full game. We have now corrected this.
Critter Crunch, Braid, Digger HD and Mushroom Wars have continued to do well each month since their release -- Hustle Kings too. Despite their age they’re doing well – likely better for the 'long tail' than they would have done on the Xbox Live Arcade, perhaps due to relatively less PSN releases being available.
April 2010 will be a month of games that will be debut both on XBLA and PSN, like After Burner Climax and Final Fight: Double Impact, but also PSN-specific games like online shooter Lead & Gold, which could become a big success on the platform. We already know we cannot follow Sam & Max, which debuted on PSN during April, in terms of Leaderboards, but hopefully we’ll get a Top 10 from Sony this time around to help us work things out.