Wall Street Shows Declining Destiny 2 Physical Sales
Coming off the heels of a huge milestone of 1.2 million players online, Destiny 2 sales are starting to falter—and we know how much Destiny 2 loves milestones. But Destiny 2 physical sales are down 50% from its predecessor, according to NPD sell-through data obtained by three Wall Street analysts.
“The launch month of Destiny 2 was well short of the original iteration by a material amount,” Piper Jaffray analyst Michael Olson wrote in a note to clients Friday, citing the NPD data.
Wedbush analyst Michael Pachter also called the Destiny 2 sales “underwhelming” in a Friday report.
Pachter added the September NPD Destiny 2 sales data missed his forecast for the game by 37 percent.
But what these reports did not track is overall sales, and rather physical copy sales in retail stores. Unfortunately, digital sales were not counted, which this lil’ amateur Wall Street analyst (me) forecasts as making up for possibly three-fifths of total sales. I’m just throwing a fraction out there, it sounds specific, like it’s not two-thirds or three-fourths.
Activision Blizzard’s CEO Bobby Kotick said on a Feb. 2016 earnings call that “for games like Destiny, it had, in the high-20%s in terms of digital downloads” versus total sales. In Feb. 2017, Activision executive Dennis Durkin said Destiny digital sales mix rose to a “mid-30s” percentage of its total sales, according to a FactSet transcript.
So what he’s saying is that even with digital sales counted, it is still less than the original Destiny release. Some attribute this to releasing on two less consoles than the original (doing backwards compatibility for Xbox 360 and PS3), but that seems like a stretch, as everyone should be up to date on a ten-year-old console window.
Pachter now estimates total first month Destiny 2 sales including full game digital downloads and physical retail sales will be “down roughly 40% from the first month sales of its predecessor.”