If we look at the history of Playstation it shows us that none of its exclusives sell a system. Last generation the highest selling exclusive was Gran Turismo selling 10 million copies, whilst the next best was God of War with a mere 5 million. On the PS2 the result was similar with Gran Turismo being way ahead of any other console exclusive and I wouldn’t consider it a ‘system seller’. Gran Turismo 3 sold 15 million but if you consider the PS2 sold over 150 million consoles it proves the Playstation has never had any killer exclusives, I expect this tradition to continue.
If we look at the history of the Xbox it shows us one game can indeed sell a system. Halo 2 sold 8 million copies despite having a 25 million userbase. This means that almost a 3rd of Xbox users owned Halo 2 and without Halo you could argue that the Xbox wouldn’t be around at this moment in time. Similarly Halo 3 sold 15 million, Halo 4 around 9 million and Gears of war 1 and 2 sold 5 million each. So far the Xbox One is yet to show us anything that will sell the system but one game could change all that.
When we look at the Wii sales last gen it’s fair to say that their system seller was Mario Kart, I’ll ignore the false sales of Wii Sports considering it was bundled with pretty much every Wii in existence. Mario Kart is yet to be released and despite the Wii U only selling 5 million consoles this far there will be 35 million people who will want to continue playing Mario Kart from last-gen. This is why I believe that Mario Kart 8 will decide the future for Nintendo.
You could argue that the Playstation has more in terms of choice and quality by looking at these figures. In terms of single player games that is probably true, but todays gamer wants online play with every big release and Sony has yet to show they can get online play right when it matters. Graphical superiority it may have but until Sony finds that one game that will blow its competition out of the water then the race for top spot is certainly still on. Over to you Microsoft.