Madden NFL 12 Opens With Impressive First Week Sales Numbers

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Posted September 8th, 2011 at 11:30 am

Sales of the Madden NFL franchise continue to climb – along with its digital revenues. Madden NFL 12′s opening week displayed a sales increase of 10% over Madden 11 and in doing so is now showing consistent growth as it’s tracking 19% over Madden 10′s early haul. In the digital arena revenue is up 78% due in large part to Madden Ultimate Team mode as more than 200K card packs have already been purchased. 

The lead-up to release of Madden NFL 12 faced troubles such as the league lockout and departure of several high level developers and executives mid-development cycle while deciding to push back the release date by three weeks. However the end of the lockout created an unprecedented level of excitement for the NFL season and that seemed to bleed over to anything associated with the league. Madden 12 trended on Twitter on its release day – a feat that Madden 11 never achieved.

The later release date, which landed near the end of the pre-season, has proven to be a smart move. Not only were fans more excited for Madden as the regular season neared but that extra time from the release of NCAA Football 12 seems to have benefited both franchises. NCAA was up 15% in its first month of sales and the gap allowed a more reasonable opportunity for fans to purchase both games or tire of NCAA in time to trade it in towards Madden.

Anticipation for Madden 12 was especially high in the days nearing release and the “Season Ticket” – which offered the chance to play it three days early – may have helped. According to EA Sports four million gameplay minutes were spent playing during the three day period. More than that though it helped to spread largely positive word of mouth which may have assisted in the initial sales rush.

Again these sports titles are seeing improved early numbers also in part due to the incentive to buy new and do so on release day. Amazon and Walmart offered $20 promotional credits with pre-orders. It won’t be until November that Madden 12 can be purchased for less than what amounts to $40. The ‘Online Pass’ also factors in making the wait for used copies less viable as an option. One would have to procure a used copy for under $30 in order to match the deal offered by Amazon/Walmart – and that doesn’t even account for the time cost of waiting rather than having it on release day.

My projections place Madden 12 bringing in 2 million in sales in it’s first “month” – compared to 1.8 million for Madden 11 and 1.6 million for Madden 10. With the way NPD sets up for official sales numbers though Madden 12 will rise well above the 2 million mark making the comparisons tougher to analyze outside of these initial percentages. With the new release date all of the sales from its first five weeks will fall in September’s reporting compared to the 3+ weeks that generally made up August’s numbers in the past.

Despite reviews being down the actual word of mouth for Madden 12 has been positive and that bodes well for sales in the coming weeks and months. WOM will largely drive results going forward – which was shown in the past as the numbers held stronger for Madden 10 than Madden 11 through the holidays. Regardless the early sales numbers are encouraging and hopefully a message to EA that focusing on the right areas of the game rather than introducing gimmicks will be rewarded and begin to rebuild credibility.

  • Mykal94

    any roster update info?

    • Smsixx

      (Not Officall) But on Yahoo I had a few people tell me 8pm tonight.

  • Alex33

    good news. if only ncaa hadnt gotten higher sales cause that game is a travesty and ea is going to think they did a good job with it

    • Anonymous

      Games are like records these days. The first week sales really don’t mean much.  It’s the longevity.

      • Anonymous

        Cool analogy bro   ^.^

  • forty six & 2

    *Waits for “Keith.” to dispute and spin these figures.*

    • Keith.

      No problem.

      I think the newest “spin” press release from EA is pretty comical, actually.  Look back at the press releases from the past 4-5 years — every year they come out after the first week and say that sales have increased over the year before.  Then, come February, we see that Madden’s sales are actually DOWN from the year before.  It’s happened 7 straight years now, and my guess is this year will be no different.

      One other thing to keep in mind…if you read the actual press release, it doesn’t specify that sales are up on PS3/360, like you would expect.  Instead, it’s 10% across ALL platforms, including mobile.  If my memory serves, M11 didn’t come out on IPhone, IPad, etc. last year until a few weeks after the console games were released.  Thus, you’re naturally going to see an increase when adding those sales to M12′s first week numbers this year.

      Of course, some see me as nothing more than a Madden hater, when I’m actually calling EA out on the spin from their own release.  But fanboys will be fanboys, I guess.

      • Anonymous

        I have to back on Keith on this topic, even though I also agree that he is somewhat of a Madden hater.  Like I said before though, just because he’s a hater doesn’t make him a liar and he is telling the truth here.

        Every year Madden sales are up the first few weeks and then fall off.  Not to mention the increased  revenue from digital content paints a more “positive” financial outlook.  Considering the well warranted poor reviews of Madden this year, I’m betting sales will fall off again.  IT APPEARS that people may be catching on to this Madden hype plan.

        I’m still waiting on this magical NCAA patch.  I’ve defended NCAA for long enough, but the fact there is still no patch out (even though I haven’t experienced the majority of these problems) still pisses me off.

        • Fgjhjkl

          “It’s happened 7 straight years now, and my guess is this year will be no different”

          Someday Keith will stop quoting this misinformation and actually take the time to go read the actual numbers for himself. They’re really easy to get.

          I think it’s sweet that Keith has gotten multiple likes for his misformation, but it’s like encouraging a kid with Aspergers to keep tweaking out, lol.

          • Keith.

            Figured it was only a matter of time before one of EA’s “Game Changers” chimed in.

            I’ve posted a link before backing up my information.  Do you have a link showing that EA’s sales have gone up any of these past 7 years?  I didn’t think so.  But nice try to keep the “spin” going.

          • DatShitCray

            I dont get how someone is an ” EA “Game Changer” ” just because they are calling you out. You actually are wrong, just so you know. People can have a positive thought about the game and not be an ” EA “Game Changer” ” . Saying you’ve “posten a link before backing up my information” does you little to no justice. Gives you 0% more credibility and if you ACTUALLY did look up the numbers you’d see you were wrong.

          • Keith.

            I have looked up the numbers before, at vgchartz, which is the only source available these days.  And I’ve posted a link to those declining sales numbers on Pasta’s site before, within the last month actually.  

            I don’t care if you or anybody else likes what Tiburon’s been delivering — it’s your money.  But I’m not going to let EA get away with their “spin” just because no one else in the gaming media has the balls to call ‘em out on it.

          • Anonymous

            hey to break it to you son, but VG Chartz isn’t an official source for video game sales figures.  Get a clue and stop being ignorant. Also numbnuts, EA has stockholders they have to report to as well as the SEC. Go ahead and look that up……..I’ll wait…………………. Time to put on your big boy pants and learn something.

          • Keith.

            You got a source other than vgchartz? Seems to be considered accurate enough whenever people want to talk sales numbers for Backbreaker, The Show, and any of 2K’s sports games.

            For the life of me, I don’t know how Riccatello and other members of EA management have been able to escape getting ousted by the shareholders in the time since the exclusives were signed. As noted, Madden and NCAA hard copy sales have been going down each year, and EA has posted BILLIONS of dollars of losses over the past few years. Ricatello and Peter Moore seem to have a nice little shell game going, but maybe it explains why Phil, Ian, and others are now all gone.

          • Fgjhjkl

            You figured wrong again, just like the mythical figures you keep quoting. I’m not an EA “Game Changer” and if you were paying attention at all, you’d know that I hate EA and Madden in general. But as usual, you spew out misinformation. When will you stop?

            When did I say EA’s sales have “gone up”? NEVER. I am simply CORRECTLY stating, that your 7 years in a row BS is false. 07 sold more than 06. 08 sold more than 06 and 07 combined. 09 was another up year. 10 was a declining year in terms of money spent versus return (do your research on this as it was a very public situation at the time) but it actually outsold 09 in units moved, this is a fact. 11 was a big decline from ’10 and it was the FIRST TIME this generation that this happened. Your 7 years in a row garbage fails, but you just won’t give it up. 

            Again, instead of yapping out misinformation, go read the numbers from NPD for yourself and get the FACTS.

            I hate Madden, but I hate misinformation even more. You sir are a fraud.

          • Keith.

            If you’re not a Game Changer, you should apply.  You’re misinformation and insults are as good as they come.

            Madden, at one time, sold 8+ million copies across all consoles.  Now, they’re lucky to hit 5.  
            Here’s a vgchartz link showing the highest number of units sold in any given year for EA (dating back to 2005) was Madden 2005 on PS2, when it sold 4.35 million copies just in America alone.  

            http://www.vgchartz.com/worldtotals.php?name=madden&publisher=&console=&genre=&minSales=0&results=50&sort=Total

            If you look at the vgchartz link and do the math, here’s what you see:

            Madden 2005 total units sold — 6.03 million

            Madden 2006 total units sold — 5.73 million

            Madden 2007 total units sold — 8.66 million

            Madden 2008 total units sold — 7.43 million

            Madden 2009 total units sold — 7.17 million

            Madden 2010 total units sold — 6.87 million

            Madden 2011 total units sold — 5.65 million

            So as it turns out, I was slightly mistaken — EA did see a bump in 2007, when they sold 8.66 million.  But every other year has seen a decline over the year before, which I bet EA didn’t think would happen when they pitched the exclusives back in ’04.  

            I don’t have the time right now to do the math for NCAA, but I’d bet it’s very similar if not even a more pronounced decline in sales since 2005.

            http://www.vgchartz.com/worldtotals.php?name=madden&publisher=&console=&genre=&minSales=0&results=50&sort=Total

            And if you want to continue to call me a fraud after all that, then so be it.

             

          • Keith.

            If you’re not a Game Changer, you should apply.  You’re misinformation and insults are as good as they come.

            Madden, at one time, sold 8+ million copies across all consoles.  Now, they’re lucky to hit 5.  
            Here’s a vgchartz link showing the highest number of units sold in any given year for EA (dating back to 2005) was Madden 2005 on PS2, when it sold 4.35 million copies just in America alone.  

            http://www.vgchartz.com/worldtotals.php?name=madden&publisher=&console=&genre=&minSales=0&results=50&sort=Total

            If you look at the vgchartz link and do the math, here’s what you see:

            Madden 2005 total units sold — 6.03 million

            Madden 2006 total units sold — 5.73 million

            Madden 2007 total units sold — 8.66 million

            Madden 2008 total units sold — 7.43 million

            Madden 2009 total units sold — 7.17 million

            Madden 2010 total units sold — 6.87 million

            Madden 2011 total units sold — 5.65 million

            So as it turns out, I was slightly mistaken — EA did see a bump in 2007, when they sold 8.66 million.  But every other year has seen a decline over the year before, which I bet EA didn’t think would happen when they pitched the exclusives back in ’04.  

            I don’t have the time right now to do the math for NCAA, but I’d bet it’s very similar if not even a more pronounced decline in sales since 2005.

            http://www.vgchartz.com/worldtotals.php?name=madden&publisher=&console=&genre=&minSales=0&results=50&sort=Total

            And if you want to continue to call me a fraud after all that, then so be it.

             

      • tish

        Surprisingly, this actually makes a lot of sense. Props to Keith.

        On the other hand, if Madden numbers really are up, it saddens me greatly. EA will keep releasing the same crap game every year and we never get another good football game like 2k5 or madden 04 & 05 again. :(

        • Smsixx

          You do know that Madden is still being released on PS2 right? If Madden 04 and 05 were supreme n that console then why don’t you just pick up a copy for PS2 and tell us what you think?

          My guess is you won’t and your full of shit :)

          • Marvrippe

            I thought you were out of your mind saying Madden 12 was released on PS2. I can’t believe they are still releasing games for PS2!! Who still plays a PS2?

        • Smsixx

          You do know that Madden is still being released on PS2 right? If Madden 04 and 05 were supreme n that console then why don’t you just pick up a copy for PS2 and tell us what you think?

          My guess is you won’t and your full of shit :)

      • tish

        Surprisingly, this actually makes a lot of sense. Props to Keith.

        On the other hand, if Madden numbers really are up, it saddens me greatly. EA will keep releasing the same crap game every year and we never get another good football game like 2k5 or madden 04 & 05 again. :(

      • Thedemocrats

        What keith is saying isn’t about madden hating. Being critical of a company that trashes the consumer and lies through their teeth in order to sell unfinished games is admirable is this age where people are too stupid or too scared to stand up for themselves.

        • Smsixx

          No one is being forced to shell out $60…what is there to “stand up tof”???.

          Thi isn’t foreign policy, politics, economy, or freedom…none of that…we are talking about a fucking video game…a cheap disc that you have the right to purchase or not to purchase. Why do you clowns act like this should be a full on revolution? It makes me really wonder if any of you kids have jobs.

      • Thedemocrats

        What keith is saying isn’t about madden hating. Being critical of a company that trashes the consumer and lies through their teeth in order to sell unfinished games is admirable is this age where people are too stupid or too scared to stand up for themselves.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_FDHTJKV7CEJ5EO5AM35ZPGNF2Y Carter

    i think they did it the friday after the first thursday game last year…..the roster updates

  • Koachvonner

    This sucks. We will never be able to get a game that we like and enjoy as long as everybody keeps running to midnight releases and buy the game. I was going to hold off from buying Madden to try and make a point but obviously my efforts are “Null and Void”.

    • forty six & 2

      So basically you’re saying that “we” which means you, will never get a perfect game that you can’t nitpick because (outside the fact that it’s humanly impossible to make something perfect) other people keep buying the game. So all the people that actually enjoy the game that go out and purchase it are wrong to do so because you want bad sales to lead to competition that will lead to more detailed sidelines, mouthpieces, and more cleat options? 

      • Smsixx

        Don’t forget socks :)

      • Smsixx

        Don’t forget socks :)

      • tish

        Most of us don’t care about socks. We just want a game in which the gameplay actually resembles football and fully functioning game modes. Superstar is unplayable and offline franchise is a complete yawnfest that is stale after going through one season for the first time.

        • forty six & 2

          I never cared for the idea of Superstar mode, so that it’s “unplayable” doesn’t matter to me personally. I like Franchise mode this year. I’m in season seven and I don’t find it to be a yawnfest or stale at all. But those are just my opinions which you don’t share. There are a lot of people that share both of our viewpoints. Either way, whether you like the game or not, your money is still the same to the company.

        • MaddenLover19

          I just want a offline Franchise Mode that doesn’t get boring after a week.

      • You’reWrong&I’mRight

        Is that so much to ask for? lol. I want to be able to see the hairs on Tom Brady neck stand up when he seems Clay Matthews coming from his blindside. WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE?!

        I want to see season ticket holders (every last one of them) sitting in the stands (including wife and kids, & hot dogs and beer) cheering for my Patriots.

        If its TRULY in the Game then it should be IN THE GAME.

        • You’reWrong&I’mRight

          *sees

        • You’reWrong&I’mRight

          *sees

  • J Tatum

    It also seems like there is less communication with the madden community now as well with the change in developers.  Before they at least kept the community updated on what issues they were going to attempt to fix.

    • http://pastapadre.com/ pastapadre

      I disagree with that, though I suppose perception could depend on where you’re looking for communication. They handled things terribly after NCAA 12 but in regards to Madden they are addressing issues on Twitter and have set up the feedback email address where they are reading it all and investigating. 

      I do think though that straight from the dev team communication is going to drop. Phil and Ian largely drove all of that. 

      • Hijbvbkjn

        Hey Pasta, how do you get the trophy “This should be easy” or something like that where you have to create a MUT but the game imported my team from 11 and there is no option to start a new one, is there a way to get this trophy?

      • Hijbvbkjn

        Hey Pasta, how do you get the trophy “This should be easy” or something like that where you have to create a MUT but the game imported my team from 11 and there is no option to start a new one, is there a way to get this trophy?

      • J Tatum

        In my opinion they knew very well some of the issues of this game when shipped.  They should be addressed on their forum that they are working on patching them or not.  The custom playbooks being the most obvious situation.  This is not like NCAA where only some users experienced problems.  Custom Playbooks are a complete mess.  It took me less than 15 minutes to figure that out when I couldn’t get sets to stack under formations.  They either didn’t test them at all, or they couldnt get them done right and knew people are forced to buy it regardless if anything works.  As an older consumer (32 years old) at least admit that the feature is broke and let us know if they plan on trying to fix it.  That would leave me with less ill will than wasting hours of time trying to get a broke feature to work right.

  • J Tatum

    It also seems like there is less communication with the madden community now as well with the change in developers.  Before they at least kept the community updated on what issues they were going to attempt to fix.

  • Brockhuard

    Basically this is the biggest disaster that could have happened because EA will continue to put out shoddy bullshit products and stomp all over consumers with little to no regard to the quality (lack thereof) of their product.

    In short, we will NEVER get a good NFL game.

    • You’reWrong&I’mRight

      Drama queen. It really isn’t that bad. Madden ’11 was a disgrace. But, this game isn’t that bad. We’ll see by the end of th year what it is looking like when they come out with all the patches.

    • herpaderp

      K.

    • Smsixx

      Question…

      Did you ever play a Madden game on a Sega Genesis or PS1 system? :)

  • Sean

    I like Madden 12 a whole lot more than Madden 11. Not perfect, but a step in the right direction.

  • JM

    Over the last 5 years, the only mistake EA made, was underestimating the size of the microscope they put themselves under after they signed those exclusivity contracts with the NFL and NCAA. Scrutiny was off the grid, every step they took was analized down to the smallest detail. I don’t think they had a clue as to what this game means to us, the fans, and there’s still a lot of catching up to do. M12 & NC12 was a step in the right direction, but as we all know…EA will backslide, so my advice to the dev team is, don’t pop the cork just yet, this was a good effort, but you’ve got to come even harder with NCAA13 & M13 next year. We’re watching, because there’s no other football games out there….to compare!

  • IOwnU

    It sucks that I may not live to see the ultimate football simulation game. (I’m only 26) At the rate they are going, it will never be “In the Game.”

    • Smsixx

      LOL!!! If you seriously have this thought then you need to wake up and get a life (no joke)

      • IOwnU

        Wtf u talking about? EA nitpicks what they want to improve year after year and then neglects on something else. They improved gameplay last year didn’t touch anything else. Improved Franchise this year and didn’t touch gameplay or anything else. 

        This game is flawed and will never be perfect to everyone’s standards (people will ALWAYS find something to complain about). YES its better than it was the year before and I have no problem with it. I’m just saying I WILL NEVER SEE THE ULTIMATE FOOTBALL SIMULATION game in my lifetime. 

        Because the game (real life) is constantly changing and EA is lagging behind (rules, simulations, injuries, stats, realism in game play, players personalities, etc). 
        Because its going to cost more (its going to take more to do so they have to put more work and effort into it—-I could go on another tangent about people complaining about how they want more in their video games but don’t want to pay extra for it) and no to mention there will probably be newer consoles. These video game makers will have to keep pace and adjust their games to match the consoles.

        So I’m not complaining I’m just thinking people need to take this into consideration AND STOP COMPLAINING ABOUT HOW BAD THESE GAMES ARE YEAR AFTER YEAR. Just be happy and buy it or STFU!!

      • IOwnU

        Wtf u talking about? EA nitpicks what they want to improve year after year and then neglects on something else. They improved gameplay last year didn’t touch anything else. Improved Franchise this year and didn’t touch gameplay or anything else. 

        This game is flawed and will never be perfect to everyone’s standards (people will ALWAYS find something to complain about). YES its better than it was the year before and I have no problem with it. I’m just saying I WILL NEVER SEE THE ULTIMATE FOOTBALL SIMULATION game in my lifetime. 

        Because the game (real life) is constantly changing and EA is lagging behind (rules, simulations, injuries, stats, realism in game play, players personalities, etc). 
        Because its going to cost more (its going to take more to do so they have to put more work and effort into it—-I could go on another tangent about people complaining about how they want more in their video games but don’t want to pay extra for it) and no to mention there will probably be newer consoles. These video game makers will have to keep pace and adjust their games to match the consoles.

        So I’m not complaining I’m just thinking people need to take this into consideration AND STOP COMPLAINING ABOUT HOW BAD THESE GAMES ARE YEAR AFTER YEAR. Just be happy and buy it or STFU!!

      • 19

        you’re the one that needs the life

        • Smsixx

          And why is that?

          Because I wake up in the morning and have better/more important shit to worry about?
          Because I can enjoy a game and not have to nitpick tiny details?

          Enlighten me Einstein :)

  • Hawkeye4077

    Playing online suks. It’s laggy and cheesers kill the enjoyment. Playing against the cpu is not much better. Sure you get more of a taste of real football simulation, but the cpu is still too predictable with their play calls and situational football is non-existent.

  • Joe

    I don’t own stock in EA nor did I help program Madden 12 so I could give a Justin Bieber about this stuff.  Any info on the roster update?  First game of the season is over.

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  • http://twitter.com/GunsNRoses300 fsda

    It is unbelievable to me how anyone actually spent money on this trash. Did they not even play the demo or watch the videos? It is the exact same broken game EA has been putting out for 7 years!

  • Blakktalon

    Year two of the madden boycott at my house is going good, the withdrawels are almost completely gone, and I dont feel cheated, or ripped off at all. 

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