Two industry analysts have predicted that casual-centric gaming firms could suffer under the pressure of the credit crunch, and have picked out Nintendo in particular as a company that could suffer more than most.

They figure that while hardcore gamers will put gaming higher up their list of priorities, casual gamers are more likely to stop buying games or even sell on consoles when cash gets tight.

"We are not sure how the recession will affect the buying habits of these new, more casual mainstream consumers", Screen Digest’s Piers Harding-Rolls said. "These consumers are more likely to view gaming as a discretionary luxury".

Games Investor Consulting’s Nick Gibson added: "As the market has become more casual-gamer focused, then it will be more susceptible to the economic rhythm. I would say that Nintendo therefore would be the most susceptible".

Nintendo boss Satoru Iwata would probably disagree after reporting strong Thanksgiving sales and feeling confident that Wii consoles were top of many people's wish lists for the holiday season.

Sales are certainly strong in the run up to Christmas and Wii is far outselling any other console on the market at the minute. Only time will tell if this alters in 2009.