27/01/2012 10:02 GMT | Updated 28/03/2012 06:12 BST

Xbox 360 Is THE Console Of 2012

The Xbox 360 Kinect is THE gaming console of 2012, according to analysts from Kantar World Panel.

The Xbox 360 will take over from Nintendo as market leader, with Playstation 3 coming second in numbers of sales. At CES, Xbox announced the 18 million of the Kinect units have been sold to date.

The Nintendo Wii peaked years ago, according to the analysts, while Xbox 360 Kinect has snapped up the Wii's target customer - the non-traditional gamer.

A lack of new game releases on Nintendo Wii was also to blame for its decline in popularity, the analysts said.

Analysts Craig Armer and Laurie Krohn told Huffington Post: "Xbox and Playstation3 will continue to perform well in 2012, because the big titles like Call of Duty play well on these consoles. Wii has relied heavily on proprietry games, and has been around for a while, so people are getting a bit tired of it."

"The new Kinect also appeals to non-core gamers who may have previously bought Wii," Armer said.

Nintendo's forecast loss is £534 million, or 65 billion yen, its first loss in over a decade.

"Nintendo has made its first loss in 20 years, and that comes at a time when the console market is dipping. It peaked around four years ago," Armer said.

He said Nintendo has a fighting chance of regaining top position if the new Nintendo Wii U grabs gamers' attention when it is released in time for Christmas this year, according to Kantar.

The console sales market peaked in part thanks to the introduction of the Nintendo Wii, adding a whole new audience of 'non-gamers' to Nintendo's core gaming audience.

That same casual gaming audience now engages with games on their smart phone, tablet or using social media.

The analysts also said that Playstation Vita will provide a strong challenge to Nintendo 3DS in 2012, although the success of the new handheld will depend on the quality of games released.

Playstation Vita will be released in the UK on February 2, and is on pre-order for £219 on Amazon.