Despite dire predictions from other corners, Nvidia executive Roy Taylor says the PC is "extremely healthy" and has a strong future as a gaming platform.
Taylor, the vice president of content and developer relations at Nvidia, said in a report by MCV that the appearance of a stumbling PC game market is primarily a reflection of the way sales data is measured, which fails to take into account non-traditional sources of PC game revenue such as online sales. "PC gaming is in really, really good shape, but traditional retail sales data measured by ChartTrack and NPD is lackluster, there's no question about it," he said. "By and large, PC games don't go into stores. If you look at the success of Steam, it's clear that many PC gamers prefer to download."
Taylor also pointed to the popularity of MMOGs, a heavily PC-dominated genre, saying that game subscriptions are a major source of revenue not accounted for in sales charts. "World of Warcraft is the most notable success, but there are at least half a dozen other MMOGs that are very successful," he said.
"On top of that, we have online advertising, and if you add all these revenue streams you can see that PC retail is extremely healthy," he continued. "If you were only to read NPD or ChartTrack, you would not get that impression."
Mirroring his comments, sales figures from Europe revealed that Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures, the recently-released fantasy MMOG from Funcom, is competing strongly with Grand Theft Auto IV. The PC-exclusive title moved past Grand Theft Auto to claim the top of the charts in both Sweden and Germany, and came in second behind GTA IV - and ahead of the major PlayStation 3 release Haze - in the U.K.