Specialist retailer GAME has warned that this year's big software releases, which include new Call of Duty and Battlefield titles, will not improve the video game retail market in the short term.
The company reported that at E3 this year it was impressed with Modern Warfare 3, Battlefield 3, FIFA 12, Assassin's Creed Revelations, Just Dance 3 and Mario Kart 3D - but it highlighted a gloomy outlook for the rest of the year.
"Although impressive, we now believe that this year's software releases are unlikely to improve the market materially in the short term, given where we are in the hardware cycle," said GAME in a trading update this morning.
Longer term, the launch of the PlayStation Vita and Wii U "bodes well for 2102 and the subsequent years," added the retailer.
The company said that overall GAME store sales for the 19 weeks to June 11 were down 11.3 per cent on last year, and like-for-like sales down 9.4 per cent.
Despite the sluggish sales for 2011, the retailer is slightly outperforming the markets in which it operates, where revenue is down 12.8 per cent, hardware down 10.3 per cent and software down 14.1 per cent - lower than consensus industry forecasts.
The group now expects total sales to be between 0 and -3 per cent compared to last year. "This reflects expectations that the total market will be down around -10% year on year, compared to the previously anticipated revenue decline of -5 per cent."