News about THQ’s sale of the UFC’s video game rights to EA continues to slip out as people on the E3 floors discuss it. At first it was seen as another sign that THQ is in some serious financial doo-doo. Now it looks like they were struggling to make money off the licence as well:
UFC Undisputed 3, THQ’s last UFC game, came out in February and has thus far failed to meet its break-even sales mark of two million units, company management told analyst Michael Pachter, despite being the third-best-selling game in the U.S. in its first month of release and with initial sales that THQ said in April were better than expected.
The previous edition, UFC Undisputed 2010, also failed to live up to expectations, which THQ President and CEO Brian Farrell blamed in part on its proximity to the first game in the series, UFC Undisputed 2009. That game sold more than 3.5 million units and at the time appeared to establish a solid foundation for the franchise.
I’m sure there’s a lot of confused execs wondering why more MMA fans weren’t willing to buy the same game three times. Perhaps EA will be better at pulling that off … it is kinda their bread and butter. No word on how UFC Personal Trainer fared sales wise.
*UPDATE* A little birdie in the gaming industry sends me these NPD numbers on game sales:
UFC 09 May:
- Xbox 360 (679.6k) + (338.3k in June 09)
- PS3 (334.4k)
UFC 2010 May:
- Xbox 360 (221.1k)
- PS3 (192.3k)
UFC 3 2012:
- To Date: 1.4 Million SHIPPED, not sold, over 5 months