By Matthew Wade
Football games ranked as best selling video games across all formats in the Middle East last year
The most popular type of video game bought in this region during 2007 was the football simulation, according to the results of a Windows Middle East survey.
In an exclusive poll of the Middle East's main video game distributors - Red Entertainment Distribution and Pluto General Trading - Windows discovered that both companies' best-selling games, across all video game formats, were soccer releases.
In Red's case its leading ‘sell-in' to the region's retailers was FIFA 2008 by Electronic Arts, while in Pluto's it was Pro Evolution Soccer 2008 by Konami.
As for the winners on specific video game formats, Pluto reported that Pro Evo was its 2007 best seller on both PlayStation 3 and older PS2 Sony console formats, with Bungie Studios' Halo 3 its Xbox 360 leader and THQ's Supreme Commander the firm's biggest PC player.
Red Entertainment meanwhile reported that its top footie sim, FIFA 2008, also led on both standard PlayStation formats, with EA's longer- released FIFA 07 doing more business on the PlayStation Portable (PSP), Need for Speed Pro Street bagging the Xbox 360 prize, and on the PC, Blizzard Entertainment ‘s World Of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade winning out.
Other interesting findings from Red included the company's discovery that Omani PlayStation users are somewhat out of sync with players across the rest of the region, preferring racing game Need for Speed to football sims, plus the inclusion in Red's Xbox 360 top-ten list of real-time strategy title Command & Conquer 3 Tiberium Wars, originally developed for PC.
The world's best-selling video game of 2007, the first-person-shooter Call of Duty 4, was not distributed in the Middle East, after Red Entertainment and publisher Activision decided that the seven million seller's content was unsuitable for the region.