Clues to a Cruddy Game in Patterns of Console Releases for European vs. American Markets

THQ just announced that Destroy All Humans: Path of the Furon will not be shipping for PS3 in the US, where it will only be available on 360. It will, however, be available on both platforms in Europe early next year. It’s always interesting to try to parse exactly what this sort of announcement actually means; THQ claim that the cause is production delays preventing the game’s availability on PS3 in time for an early December release.

Now, it is true that the installed base of PS3 in the US is a bit weak, so it’s certainly not hard to believe that a publisher might just not put in that extra push to get it out for Christmas, and decide that a second marketing effort for a perhaps weak title on a weak platform isn’t worth the bother. Which makes Sony seem a bit sidelined by this dynamic.

However, it is also true that Sony has historically been quite demanding of a quality play experience for its platforms and in the US has been able to enforce creative standards. In the EU, however, a semi-monopoly like Sony has much less latitude to impose such standards. So, if a game is shipping in Europe on PS3 and 360, but in the ‘States only on 360, there’s a pretty good chance that Sony has said it’s unworthy of the platform.

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