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Retail

Homefront passes "key break-even level"

Fri 25 Mar 2011 8:42am GMT / 4:42am EDT / 1:42am PDT
Retail

Analysts raise stock estimate after THQ announces 1m sales, 2.4m shipped units

First person shooter Homefront, which received a mixed critical reception, is already estimated to have passed into profitability for publisher THQ, with two separate analysts raising estimates for the company as a result.

THQ has announced that the game has shipped 2.4 million units to date, with a sell through of more than 1 million across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific markets. The game is currently number one in the UK charts and has become the best-selling console debut of the year so far. In North America the game sold 375,000 units in its first day.

Lazard Capital Markets analyst Colin Sebastian has already calculated that the game has now surpassed its "key break-even level", with the 2.4 million shipment figure being higher than expected. As a result the analyst has increased estimates for the fourth quarter of the year towards the higher end of its guidance range, with expected revenues of $254.8 million.

The firm is maintaining its Hold rating on the company's stock though due to "a cautious industry view and limited visibility into near-term product catalysts."

This success comes despite a largely ambivalent critical response to the game, with THQ's stock dropping by as much as 26 per cent following an early Metacritic score of 72 (now 71).

As a result of the game's success though, analyst Doug Creutz at Cowen and Company has reiterated his belief that the game will achieve a worldwide sell through of more than 2 million units and that THQ remains on track to achieve full year 2011 and 2012 estimates. Creutz also described that stock drop off as "unwarranted" and rated it as Outperform and "inexpensive".

Homefront has been one of the most high profile games on THQ's current schedule, with the company planning both sequels and a movie tie-in based on the game's expected success. In March core games vice president Danny Bilson revealed that the game was the company's most pre-ordered product ever.

"We are very pleased with strong worldwide shipments and sell-through for Homefront, and we continue to fulfil new retail orders for the game across the globe," said Brian Farrell, THQ president and CEO. "Homefront is clearly resonating with gamers and we are certainly pleased with our initial sales results."

17 Comments

Aleksi Ranta
Product Manager - Hardware

273 127 0.5
Another good example that review scores and sales dont go hand in hand.

Posted:3 years ago

#1

Barrie Tingle
Live Producer

374 148 0.4
Congratulations to the KAOS guys. Apart from the server problems they are working on the game has been lots of fun and well worth the purchase.

Posted:3 years ago

#2

John Donnelly
Quality Assurance

313 38 0.1
Congrats guys.
Still need to pick this up but its on my shopping list for this weekend.

Posted:3 years ago

#3

Nicholas Kurt Hughes
Studying transport design

3 0 0.0
Lucky I use Online rental services to check out games before purchase, In my opinion the singleplayer is barely mediocre until the end where it actually picks up and becomes a decent attempt on the fps genre, to little to late and there talking about a sequel? They should of made a full gaming experience and not a 4hour campaign.

Online was a decent attempt, but not enough for me to buy the game, so it got returned after the weekend.
I'm sure a lot of those sales will be going part-ex towards Crysis 2.

Congratulations to the marketing and PR structure of THQ.

Posted:3 years ago

#4
I am really glad the game is performing on sales and, hopefully, will be given the chance to grow into a franchise and improve its (obvious) weak points. Overall, I really enjoyed the campaign, mainly for the superb immersion it provided.

Posted:3 years ago

#5

Abel Oroz
Art Director / Artist

16 0 0.0
I'm glad for the crew in Kaos, but on the other hand, I can't help being sad that copycats perform well on sales just because they exploit the trendy niche, even being underdeveloped.

That only validates marketability studies over creativity, and will stablish a precedent for yet more attempts to get a chunk on realistic shooters with even less effort (other than marketing). Well, at least a couple investors might read from it that new franchises have a market potential, but it doesn't seem very likely.

Posted:3 years ago

#6

Edward Buffery
Pre-production Manager

149 96 0.6
Any game that scores 70+ is clearly a decent game. The titles in that range which don't sell well are usually because they fell outside of the mainstream gaming genres/interests, or because they weren't marketed enough. Homefront clearly suffers from neither of those things to hold it back, so I'm still surprised and slightly confused about why so many people believed it wouldn't sell well. I can only assume that certain financial analysts have little clue about how the games industry works.

Posted:3 years ago

#7

Abraham Tatester
Producer

71 53 0.7
I wonder how many of those gamers bought the game after not reading reviews and not learning that the campaign is only five hours long. And I wonder how many were disappointed.

Posted:3 years ago

#8

Megan Fox
Programmer

7 0 0.0
I kind of wonder why anyone expected an online-oriented FPS in the CoD mold to have a campaign that was longer than 5 hours in the first place? Hasn't that been the way of these games for years (you get them mostly for the online side)?

Posted:3 years ago

#9

Private
Industry

1,176 182 0.2
Reviews are not everything, Alpha Protocol holds at a 64 for PS3 and 63 for 360 and I still like it and enough for 2 play troughs (it has more than enough issues of course).

As for Homefront good for Kaos, personaly still waiting for a price drop because only interested in the single player setting as mp games don`t hold anymore my interest with so many games coming out. I played CS for years, but now it`s just too many games. The drop in and drop out way of playing was better for flexible time. By now I lost track of what rank I have in what game and now you get a new game and just think "yeah I need to level up in another game to get good equipment". I kind of like at the moment how racing games work with a shared profile for mp and singleplayer. Whatever you unlock in one you have in the other and a general rank. It doenst work that easy for other Genres, but why not give people who finish the singleplayer in mp rank 10 or 15 or whatever is the average equivalent of the time spend. Average time spend for campaign is x amount of hours and after x amount of hours in mp you have rank 10 = Rank 10 once the campaign is finished. It`s not like making the campaign is cheap and some people don`t consider playing it while those who play it have a natural disadvantage in mp once they finished the campaign and switch over to mp. What you get with the mp progression system is higher rank better weapon and better weapon is easier to get kills and so on and therefore strongly unbalanced if you first play sp and than go to mp and play against rank 20 players who skipped the sp with their awesome equipment.

Edited 3 times. Last edit by Private on 26th March 2011 12:34am

Posted:3 years ago

#10

Jamie Watson
Studying Bachelor of Games & Interactive Entertainment

179 0 0.0
good to hear that they reached enough to make a 2nd one!

that means they can fix up the little bits that people didnt like and make a more awesome game!

good work kaos studios!

Posted:3 years ago

#11

Abraham Tatester
Producer

71 53 0.7
@Megan
Short answer: no. CoD Campaigns are generally at least 8-10 hours. Ditto for Halo, Resistance, Gears, etc. Some longer. (Though I'm sure it's possible to play through them faster.) You'd probably know this if you did play these games.
Regardless, while we may be in the minority, there are still plenty of folks like me who like a bit of story with their action (and don't care to play mature games with rude and foul-mouthed preteens) and therefore prefer SP to MP.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Abraham Tatester on 26th March 2011 6:16pm

Posted:3 years ago

#12

Howard Parry

23 13 0.6
Of course any analyst worth their salt would realise that the huge marketing campaign coupled with very appealing characteristics (foreign invasion of America) would result in large sales. Surely an analyst's job is to include every possible factor in their scenario? We have been shown here that is not the case, and all they do is read metacritic.

Posted:3 years ago

#13

Private
Industry

1,176 182 0.2
They are high priced fortune tellers.

Posted:3 years ago

#14

Greg Wilcox
Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,174 1,124 0.5
@Werner: +100 for that. Seeing game stock rise and fall like domino towers on a VCR tape is annoying when it's based on speculation (sometimes written by non-gamers for non gamers with only financial interest in their varied investments) and this over dependence on basing success on a short sales window and "box office" style receipts that don't tell the full story of how good (or bad) a game truly is. Whatever happened to word of mouth and letting games find a niche? Granted, most FPS' these days are trucking along in line with popular over good, but there are exceptions (as there are in every genre).

Posted:3 years ago

#15

Andrew Goodchild
Studying development

1,243 401 0.3
So sold better than expected, but still the redundancies. I thought the head honcho indicated that good sales would keep jobs safe. Of course it was implied by his words rather than said outright.

Posted:3 years ago

#16

Private
Industry

1,176 182 0.2
Well, even if they are going to make Homefront 2, they probably have to many people than what they need for the start of the project. The reasonable thing would be to give a project based contract that way you don`t really lay people off just not extend them. But I`m not sure how well that works for programmers and designers.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Private on 1st April 2011 7:50pm

Posted:3 years ago

#17

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