Playstation 3 nabs 40% of Grand Theft Auto IV

Posted by Mark Raby

New York (NY) - Despite Sony's PS3 console being outsold by the Xbox 360 by more than two to one in the US, it managed to grab a healthy amount of the Grand Theft Auto IV sales.

GTA IV broke game records around the world when it came out a few weeks ago, selling 3.6 million copies in the first day and six million copies by the end of the week.

In a post on Microsoft's official Gamerscore Blog, the Xbox team claims that 60% of all GTA IV sales in the United States were for the Xbox 360 version.  It sounds like great news for the Microsoft system.  However, given the extreme difference between install bases for the two, it's also a victory for the PS3.

As of NPD's latest numbers at the end of March, around 4.05 million PS3 consoles had been sold in the US, compared to nearly 10 million Xbox 360 units.  If software sales matched those numbers, the Xbox 360 version of GTA IV would be out-selling the PS3 at a margin of close to 70%/30%, instead of 60%/40%.  That means the PS3 is actually gaining some traction.

GTA IV is helping to move consoles too.  Microsoft said that 40% of all new Xbox 360 consoles since the game launched have been sold with a copy.

Additionally, UK retail chain Chips told gaming site next-gen.biz, "Some people appear to have been waiting for a killer app on PS3 and see GTA IV as that app, so we’re certainly noticing that the game’s more of a hardware shifter for PS3."

GTA IV publisher Rockstar Games has signed an exclusive agreement with Microsoft for new downloadable content (DLC) on the Xbox 360.  However, there are rumors circulating that the PS3 will receive DLC as well.