Big gamble seems to be paying off for Disney Interactive which was in need of a hit after years of losses
Disney is “extremely happy with the early days of ‘Infinity,’” according to Jay Rasulo, senior executive VP and chief financial officer of the Walt Disney Co.
Rasulo touched on the game’s sales performance since its August release, during a discussion at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Media, Communications & Entertainment Conference on Thursday.
He was hesitant to pronounce the game a definitive hit for Disney Interactive, given that it’s only been out in stores for several weeks, but did reveal that it’s selling “on par” with the launch of Activision’s hit game “Skylanders Giants,” last year, which features a similar combo of action figures and videogame to play. Activision will release a third version, “Skylanders SWAP Force,” this fall.
Separately, Disney said it sold 294,000 starter pack units for the game in the U.S. during the last two weeks of August, a strong start for the title, according to a spokesperson.
That’s good news for the long struggling Disney Interactive division that put considerable investment behind the creation and launch of “Disney Infinity,” that features many of the Mouse House’s more popular characters, movies and TV shows.
With kids back in school, sales have slowed, but there’s anticipation “of very big things in the holiday selling period” to come for “Infinity,” Rasulo said.
Disney has been surprised at just who is playing the game.
“It’s a little older than we anticipated,” Rasulo said, with the average “Infinity” player being 13, and the game even selling well to 20-somethings.
That’s largely because the game is appealing to hardcore gamers, Rasulo said, with “Infinity” also selling better than expected at stores like Gamestop, frequented primarily by hardcore gamers, not the casual gamer that tends to purchase titles from larger retailers like Walmart or Target.
The game is also selling better on consoles like the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, but not Nintendo’s handheld devices or consoles.
“It means core gamers are very interested” in “Infinity,” and signals that “all indications are great” that the game will continue to grow for Disney in the primary holiday sales season, Rasulo said.