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NPD: Recession Inhibiting Game Biz Growth

The NPD's Michael Klotz says the video game industry is still growing in the U.S., but we "probably would have seen even more growth", especially during the latter half of 2008, without the economic downturn kicking in, according to new media reports.
The video game industry is still growing in the U.S., but that growth's been hampered by the economic downturn, according to the NPD Group's Michael Klotz, speaking at SMU's Game Business Law summit. "Previously, people thought that games might be recession-proof," said senior account manager Klotz, according to a report from game news site GameDaily. While one out of every four dollars spent on entertainment went toward video games in 2008, the video game business is still being affected by the recession, Klotz added. "The game industry is growing, but it has been impacted by the recession," he said. "We probably would have seen even more growth if it hadn't been impacted by the current economic climate in the U.S." Though August through November 2008 saw significant sales growth from 8 percent to 12 percent each month -- except for a 7 percent decline in October -- Klotz believes that those results should have matched with much higher increases from earlier in the year. Despite the recession's impact on the game industry, consumer surveys report that gamers do not intend to cut back on their video game spending during the economic crisis, the NPD manager said. However, Klotz also described the PlayStation 2 as a console with excellent value to consumers who may not be able to afford the $250 to $400 price for a current generation system, but still want to play titles like Guitar Hero.

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