Pokemon-inspired Cube revival pushes Xbox into third place

Sales of the Nintendo GameCube have risen above the Xbox for the first time since November, according to the latest set of hardware sales figures from UK research body Chart-Track. For the seven-day period to May 23rd, sales of the GameCube rose by over 12 per cent week on week, while Xbox sales declined by 7.3 per cent - meaning the Nintendo machine overtook the big black box after almost six months of lagging in third place.

The rise is thought to have been prompted by the success of Cube-exclusive Pokemon Colloseum, which has been at No.2 in the All Formats chart since its debut two weeks ago. Sales of the Cube are running at almost double the level they were prior to the belated arrival of Pokemon, and with both Microsoft and Sony refusing to cut the price of their respective machines, the Cube remains markedly cheaper in Europe than either of it two more successful rivals.

Sony, meanwhile, has experienced a massive drop in PS2 sales in the past two weeks, with hardware sales levels plunging to less than half of what they were at the end of April, and to their lowest levels for more than two years. Unless the sudden drop off in sales is a stock related issue, Sony will be keen to arrest the decline in the near future - possibly with more value bundles and maybe even a long overdue price cut - but it will most likely wait for Microsoft to make the first move, with the PS2 still outselling the Xbox by over two to one despite its recent drop off in sales performance.

News source: gamesindustry.biz

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