THE MARKET FOR COMPUTER AND VIDEO GAMES
Issue 586 Friday May 7 2010 £3.25
04 Free Cologne
18 Sega’s reshuffle
How you can register for a free ticket to Gamescom
Newly-promoted Alan Pritchard on his move to the US and digital plans
flights for retail
International Media Partner
05 Market bounces back
14 Best has come
After dismal trading in April, first May weekend shows market up 40%
An in-depth look at the UK arrival of Best Buy – and what it means for games
09 THQ ready for a fight
37 Retail Biz
Publisher expects this month’s brawler UFC to beat 2009’s record sales
Our detailed product guides focus on Split/Second: Velocity and many more
EVERY BUYER EVERY BRANCH EVERY INDIE EVERY WEEK
Retail backs charity pack GamesAid bundle features PS3 games donated by Codemasters, Square Enix and Sega Triple-pack hits June 25th Release should raise £500,000 from 30,000 shipment by Michael French
Heath returns with Rockstar veterans’ new games firm by Christopher Dring
UK RETAILERS will work together to raise £500,000 by stocking a new charity pack of video games. Put together by GamesAid, the triple-title bundle will retail for just £29.99 and arrives on June 25th. Key titles Tomb Raider: Underworld, Sega Superstars Tennis and Fuel form the bundle and have been donated by publishers Square Enix, Sega and Codemasters.
GEOFF HEATH has joined fast-growing music games outfit 4mm Games as it opens new offices in London. The New York-based publisher has opened an office in the West End to support its European growth. Advisory board memeber Heath will offer strategic input.
Not only does this raise money for our charities, it raises awareness at consumer level. Andy Payne, GamesAid
All profits will go to GamesAid charities. MCV understands that 30,000 units will be shipped out, generating close to half a million pounds. The bundle will be exclusive to PS3. Ray Maguire, SCE UK’s MD, said: “We are delighted to be supporting GamesAid in this venture. It’s good for the industry as a whole, and we’re proud to be involved.” GamesAid chairman Andy Payne added: “Not only does
this triple pack raise money for our charities, it also raises awareness of GamesAid at consumer level. We now look forward to retail getting behind it and giving it the push it deserves.” Key retailers both big and small have already pledged support after being briefed about the release at an invite-
only MCV Retail Advisory Board dinner last month (see full list, below). “The charity pack means retail can make a difference to some very deserving causes,” Asda’s games buying manager Duncan Cross told MCV. The Hut’s Richard Chapple added: “We’ll do everything we can to drive awareness of this notable cause to customers.”
Key retailers have already offered to support the bundle:
Grainger Games is also keen to get involved. The chain is already planning charity events to support GamesAid. Sales director Phil Moore said: “After attending the RAB dinner, seeing Andy Payne’s passion and commitment to GamesAid, and getting a glimpse of how our industry can support worthy causes, we were very keen to get involved. This is a great way to give something back and support young people.”
4mm was formed last year by former Rockstar Games veterans Jamie King and Gary Foreman. The publisher is currently overseeing the completion of its first game, Def Jam Rapstar, which will be distributed by Konami. The London office will handle sales and marketing for the game while spearheading 4mm’s long-term Euro growth. “In my career in the video games industry, I have rarely come across such a passionate, creative and talented management team as the guys at 4mm,” said Heath. Heath established Activision’s European base and most recently served as CEO for NCSoft Europe. He was given an OBE for service to the video games industry. “I am thrilled to be a part of 4mm’s future success and support them in becoming a major global player.”
PERSONNEL 35 RETAIL BIZ 37 NEW RELEASES 44 HIGH STREET 46 CHARTS 48
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[LEADER] SEGA’S NEW SAGA RECENT NEWS that Sega has cut back on staff numbers only told the horrible half of a fairly revealing transformation at the company. You can see the details in full on pages 7 and 18-19. But in short: the firm is steeling itself for the digital future by consolidating its boxed product strategy for Europe and North America to its talented European teams. Meanwhile its San Francisco staff are left to focus on newly emerging web platforms. But a lot of publishers are doing similar things, charging groups in their organisation to devise new digital strategies. LucasArts, Capcom, Take-Two, Codemasters – all of them and more have said as much in the pages of MCV over recent months. Digital is the word du jour. Is new Sega US VP Alan Pritchard – one of the key people who has overseen Sega Europe’s expert boxed game strategy – right to say there is a herd mentality amongst publishers in the rush to digital? Maybe. And it’s worth taking heed of his hint in our Q&A on page 18 that some of the wild ideas in
“A lot of the wild ideas in digital distribution will fail, and there is a mobile content-like bubble there waiting to messily pop.” digital distribution will fail, and that there is a mobile content-like bubble there waiting to messily pop. But the trick is being prepared to meet that challenge head on – and it’s the kind of challenge I reckon an always evolving, always surviving company like Sega should be able to rise to eventually.
COM ONE, COM ALL GAMESCOM’S PLANS to offer 100 retailer reps free flights to its August trade fair in Cologne borders on genius. Yes, I’m sure the offer will be over-subscribed, and leave a number of applicants disappointed – but as a statement of intent it says a lot about how seriously the show wants to be taken. And how seriously the rest of us should take it. When the German bosses of the games industry’s publishing legion decided two years ago that the show must go on, albeit in a different city with better facilities, the thinking was to turn the underappreciated Leipzig into Europe’s leading games event via a change of location. The expo days for consumers last year proved a show like that is important for demoing product to continental consumers – so much so that it is permanently on the radar of global bosses now. The next push is to drive that further into our more parochial trade’s thinking. And it’s clear from the people MCV speaks to that things are slowly changing. So who needs a UK tradeshow when Gamescom is going to great lengths to give us what we want? Michael.French@intentmedia.co.uk
Gamescom plans Trade element includes limited free plane tickets for select retailers by Rob Crossley ORGANISERS OF Gamescom are hoping to tempt retailers to the show with free flights – and draw in consumers with the first public demos of Natal and Move. Show host Koelnmesse and German trade group BIU held a special presentation in London this week outlining plans to cement the expo’s dates on the industry calendar. “Last year it was difficult to convince companies to make
attendance figures. As many as 270,000 are hoped will visit Cologne in August, an increase of 25,000 on 2009. And to expand its European trade reach the firm is also offering free trips to the event for 100 British game retailers (see ‘Free Gamescom flights’). Explained Wolters: “We want to make it easier for internationals to come to Germany. Everything has come true since we planned the switch from Leipzig to Cologne, the
Global announcements have proven very successful at our show. Gamescom is ready to grow and take the next step. Olaf Wolters, BIU
important announcements at Gamescom, but Sony chose our show to officially reveal the PS3 Slim,” said BIU CEO Olaf Wolters. “So I really think people have seen how successful companies can be by making global announcements at our show. Gamescom is ready to grow and take the next step.” At the presentation this week Koelnmesse reps said they are confident 2010’s expo will beat last year’s gigantic
plan to make travel as easy as possible for everyone has worked and we can move on from the problems back in Leipzig. “It’s really easy to travel to Cologne, and really easy to get to Gamescom.” Wolters said Gamescom’s priority is European audiences, not global – and that the event isn’t in competition with E3. “E3 is a networking event, and it’s a long distance for European retailers to fly over
there, actually. If retailers want to do their business, they can do it very well at Gamescom,” he added. “It’s good to have a focus on the European market. In Europe you can discuss the issues that affect Europe – that simply doesn’t happen in America. Gamescom brings European business closer to the market, closer to the issues.” Wolters also told MCV Gamescom will be the first time Sony and Microsoft will show their motion-control devices to consumers.
BUNGIE PREPARES POST-LAUNCH PUSH FOR REACH
THE STUDIO may have signed an unprecedented ten-year deal with Activision last week – but Bungie has told MCV that its last Halo game for Microsoft will still receive plenty of post-launch support, which should give it a boost at retail. “We have a great relationship with our community, so we want to make sure we keep the game going,” the studio’s community director Brian Jarrard said. “There will be some portion of the studio focused on Halo: Reach.” Reach’s beta test launched this week ahead of the Q4 release of the latest instalment in the blockbuster franchise.
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Motion controllers will draw crowds
RED DEAD REDEMPTION: LIMITED EDITION
Olaf Wolters, CEO of German trade group BIU, reckons Gamescom is attracting more and more international visitors this year
UK games market recovers from slump by Christopher Dring
FREE GAMESCOM FLIGHTS UK specialist game retailers can book free return tickets to this year’s Gamescom event in Cologne. Event organiser Koelnmesse says that the first 100 UK retailers to register on Gamescom’s website can book a roundtrip to the event at no cost, via flight group Germanwings. A deadline of Friday May 14 has been set for the deal.
“We’re confident that Sony and Microsoft will want to show their devices to the public at Gamescom for the first time,” said Wolters. "We won’t just have demonstrations behind closed doors.” Wolters said Gamescom is ‘a great testing environment’ for the launch of new hardware and software, as tradesmen get to see queues
build up for new products and software – as well as make their feelings towards the products known. “That’s what makes the show really unique – it combines business with a huge market audience,” added Wolters. Gamescom takes place from August 18th to August 22nd. www.gamescom-cologne.com
THE UK games market has bounced back following a collapse in retail sales two weeks ago. Last week MCV revealed that the UK games market’s weekly value had fallen to its lowest point in four years. According to data from Gfk Chart-Track, the games market was worth just £13.5 million for the week ending April 23rd. However, the launch of EA’s FIFA World Cup 2010 and Capcom’s Super Street Fighter IV have caused sales to shoot up 39 per cent. The UK games industry was worth £18.8 million last week, while units also rose 29 per cent to 840,034 games sold. FIFA World Cup accounted for almost 12 per
cent of all games sold during the last week. “The market responded to new releases this week, heavily led by FIFA and Super Street Fighter,” said ChartTrack’s Chris Poole. “There were also some promotions going on at retail. Modern Warfare 2 was discounted over the weekend, as were a host of other titles, such as Mirror’s Edge. The market improvement was down to a combination of promotions and new releases.” May is a relatively quiet month for games but there is still a handful of triple-A titles that should help sales during the month. Key releases include Alan Wake, Red Dead Redemption, Split/Second: Velocity, Blur, Lost Planet 2 and Prince of Persia.
2. RED DEAD REDEMPTION: LIM ED PS3 ....................................ROCKSTAR
3. HALO REACH LEGENDARY EDITION 360 ..................................MICROSOFT
4. LOST PLANET 2 + T-SHIRT 360 ......................................CAPCOM
5. LOST PLANET 2 + T-SHIRT PS3 ......................................CAPCOM
6. RED DEAD REDEMPTION 360 ....................................ROCKSTAR
7. 3D DOT GAME HEROES PS3 ..................................SOUTHPEAK
8. RED DEAD REDEMPTION PS3 ....................................ROCKSTAR
9. DEMON SOULS BLACK PHANTOM PS3 ............................NAMCO BANDAI
10. HALO REACH COLLECTORS EDITION 360 ..................................MICROSOFT Week ending: April 30th Source: SHOPTO.COM Turn to page 49 for more pre-order charts from leading online retailers
UK SOFTWARE SALES MONITOR Your weekly guide to the UK games software market… World Cup fever has already begun in the games sector. The EA-published official tie-in drove sales and helped the market value rise 39 per cent week-on-week to £18.8m. Unit sales also shot up 29 per cent to 840,034 games sold. Capcom’s Super Street Fighter IV also performed strongly in the Chart-Track Top 40, while Modern Warfare 2 sales leapt up 42 per cent, driven by retail price promotions. Retail can expect FIFA World Cup to sell well in the weeks to come as hype builds for the tournament in South Africa, which kicks off June 11th. Next week is a relatively quiet week, but a series of big name titles including Red Dead Redemption are scheduled later in May.
[WEEKLY MARKET VALUE]
Total UK Software Sales Source: ELSPA/ChartTrack and Intent Media
Week Ending April 30th 2010
EA’s World Cup game took the No.1 spot this week
0 Week Ending April 16th
Week Ending April 23rd
Week Ending April 30th
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Nintendo leads Develop 100 Format-holder’s Kyoto studio tops list of world's most successful development houses by Michael French THE 2010 edition of the Develop 100 has named Nintendo as the most successful games developer in the world. Put together by our sister magazine Develop and published in association with Deep Silver, the Develop 100 ranks the top studios in the world based on the sales of their games at retail in the UK. The list is formulated using ELSPA/GfK Chart-Track data for calendar year 2009. Nintendo’s Kyoto-based internal studio secured its position at the top thanks to a mix of evergreen hits like Mario Kart Wii and Wii Fit,
DEVELOP 100 - THE TOP TEN Position
2009 UK Revenues
1 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NINTENDO . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £203.63m . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Japan 2 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . INFINITY WARD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £125.58m. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . USA 3 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . EA CANADA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £100.99m. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Canada 4. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . UBISOFT MONTREAL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £59.71m . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Canada 5 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FOUNDATION 9 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £36.83m . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Various 6 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . SEGA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £35.93m . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Japan 7 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . CAPCOM . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £31.87m . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Japan 8. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . TREYARCH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £30.99m . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . USA 9 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . YUKE’S . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £30.06m . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Japan 10 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . LEVEL-5 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . £29.14m . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Japan
Three join MCV Retail Advisory Board KEY PERSONNEL from GAME, DSGi and Best Buy have joined MCV’s Retail Advisory Board. The RAB is an elite group of top games buyers and retail reps, which was set up to keep MCV informed on the latest happenings at the UK trade. The members of the board are also responsible for picking the winner of the Special Recognition accolade at the MCV Awards. Following the departure of GAME CEO Lisa Morgan, head of UK PR Neil Ashurst has stepped up for both the GAME and Gamestation chains. Meanwhile, Peter Willis has departed DSGi’s games team so
ALL ABOARD: (pictured left to right) Ashurst, Spence and Fleming
fellow category manager Danielle Fleming will take his place on the RAB. The final new member of the board is retail veteran Marc Spence. Spence is head of entertainment for Best Buy. The US retail giant entered the UK market last month – for more on their games plans check out page 14.
“We are delighted to welcome Neil, Danielle and Marc to our Retail Advisory Board,” said MCV editor-inchief Michael French. “The RAB board members have already become an integral part of MCV’s editorial offering, and are vital in keeping us up-to-date on the latest developments at retail.”
plus last year’s big sellers New Super Mario Bros. Wii and Wii Fit Plus. Nintendo’s cumulative software might beat out Infinity Ward, the studio behind last year’s biggest selling game Modern Warfare 2 – the Activision-owned studio had to settle for second place. (For the full list, see the Top 10, below left.) 2010’s edition of the Develop 100 did see several new entrants in the Top 10, including Foundation 9 – the US-headquartered studio network that owns Sheffield-based Sumo Digital – and Professor Layton developer Level-5. A book including the full list, analysis and commentary is bundled with select reader codes of MCV this week, and the entire run of the May issue of Develop. More details on the list, including a free digital edition and background info can be found at www.develop100.com.
Deadline looms for top games studio awards DEVELOPERS across the UK and Europe have just a week left to lobby for the 2010 Develop Awards. Now in its eighth year, the event takes place on July 14th at the Hilton Metropole Hotel in Brighton and 500 industry execs are expected to attend and see prizes including Best New IP, Best Independent Studio and Technical Innovation handed out. Finalists will be announced at the start of June – but studios and publishers can still put forward their talented teams for consideration. Simply send a 300 word lobbying pitch to developawards@ intentmedia.co.uk. Early bird rates on tickets and tables are also available until June 7th. To book your place at the event contact Kathryn.Humphrey@ intentmedia.co.uk. High-profile promotional opportunities including category and award sponsorship are also available – please contact Katie.Rawlings@ intentmedia.co.uk for details.
New Vegas to top Fallout 3 sales? BETHESDA believes Fallout: New Vegas can top the phenomenal success of its 2008 predecessor, Fallout 3. The new game, developed by Obsidian Entertainment, is due for release in Q4. Fallout 3 debuted at No.1 in the ELSPA/GfK Chart-Track All Formats charts and managed to shift 4.7 million copies worldwide in its first week. It also outsold the combined sales of all previous Fallout games in just two days. “Based on what we’re seeing so far from the response at retail and from gamers, we
expect New Vegas to do even better than Fallout 3,” said Bethesda’s global VP of PR and marketing Pete Hines. “We’ll have to wait and see just how much better. We’ve built on the strengths of Fallout 3, what we know worked and added a whole new host of features and touches that further improve the experience. “Take all of that to a new setting like Las Vegas, which is a great fit for the Fallout brand, and it gives us every reason to believe this can be a huge success for us.” Bethesda: 0207 025 7360
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Sega shuffle fuels digital plan Pritchard promoted to handle US operations New Euro MD revealed ‘We will lead in digital,’ says firm by Christopher Dring SEGA IS transforming its Western business to become a leader in the digital space. The firm’s restructure – which was announced last week – will see Sega Europe manage all Western boxed product while Sega America will focus on digital titles. And MCV can reveal that this has resulted in big role changes for key European execs.
Elsewhere, several European bosses have had their remits extended to look after US operations. European marketing director Gary Knight will become VP of brand marketing, European studios boss Gary Dunn has been promoted to senior VP for development, while commercial director Gary Rowe will become senior VP of publishing and content. Sega had already confirmed there will be 73 job losses as a
There is a lot of talk about digital being of equal value to boxed product and we need to be leading that market. Alan Pritchard, Sega
Current European boss Alan Pritchard will move to the US and become vice president of sales and marketing for Sega America. His new position will take effect from June, with Sega Benelux boss Jurgen Post taking over from Pritchard as MD for Sega Europe.
part of the restructure – 37 in Sega Europe and 36 in Sega America. MCV understands that many of these redundancies have already taken place and happened across all departments. “All of our central brand marketing initiatives will be done with Sega West in mind,
DIGITAL DREAMS: Pritchard heads west as Sega America grows its digital offering
rather than having our team in America going in one direction and our team in Europe going in another,” explained Pritchard. “Packaged goods is still the biggest part of our business. There is a lot of talk about digital being of equal value to packaged, or certainly becoming so in the next few years. And we need to make sure we are at the front of the market leading and not following.” The publisher is the latest to declare its digital ambitions, with Capcom, Take-Two, Codemasters and LucasArts all telling MCV in recent weeks they hope to become a leader in the digital sphere. “There does seem to be a bit of a herd mentality, with everyone rushing to every digital opportunity,” added Pritchard. “But it is still something we need to be a part of and we need to invest in. The strategy is to be at the forefront, and not at the back of the queue.” For more on Sega’s digital plans, check our interview with Pritchard on page 18.
BBC: ‘We’ll be a catalyst for market growth’ THE BBC believes it can revolutionise the games market with Doctor Who: The Adventure Games. The third-person action PC title is a downloadable free-toplay episodic adventure.
could bring about change for how digital titles are distributed. “We want to be a catalyst for the market,” said BBC Multiplatform’s head of fiction and entertainment commissions Victoria Jaye.
Games are integral to growing digital properties and we’re looking at how we can partner with the games industry.
Victoria Jaye, BBC Multiplatform
But the broadcaster doesn’t believe that giving the game away for free will hurt the games sector, and instead
“The role of the BBC in this space is to deliver compelling drama and entertainment – but that has to have a distinctive
WHO KNOWS: BBC claims Doctor Who can spur market change
public service to it. We’ll be focusing on this in some areas and we’ll let the market provide for others – it’s not
our intention to impact on the market in a negative way.” Jaye added that the Doctor Who games were a key step in
growing the company’s presence in the market, as well as being proof of how crucial games are as entertainment evolves in the digital space. “Games are integral to growing digital properties,” she said. “If you are looking at developing digital stories, potentially many of them will be of a gaming nature, and we’ll continue looking at this space. “We have the right formats, some great stories and we’re continually growing our talent base, so now we’re looking at how we can partner with the games industry to come up with something very special that feels distinctively BBC.”
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Game peripherals firms braced for Natal and Move sales boom Accessories sector prepares products for Microsoft and Sony’s new motion-based gadgets for consoles by Dominic Sacco THE GAMING accessories market expects a surge in peripheral sales when Project Natal and PlayStation Move hit store shelves. MCV quizzed 15 manufacturers – all of which are preparing their own products to accompany the motion tech. Mad Catz Europe’s general manager Brian Anderson said: “We’re enormously excited about the launch of Natal and Move and are convinced that it will stimulate sales for the entire industry over the crucial holiday period. “When Wii Fit launched, the public embraced the product and uptake was akin to an entirely new platform. We were first to market with a full range of Wii Fit accessories and we’re approaching Move and Natal in the same way, as an opportunity to support and innovate where we can.” A spokesperson for Hubb Accessories added: “Our
POETRY IN MOTION: Microsoft’s Project Natal and Sony’s Move look set to give accessories manufacturers a lift later this year
We’re enormously excited about the launch of Natal and Move and are convinced that it will stimulate sales. Brian Anderson, Mad Catz
product line up is already well underway for the launch later this year and we are looking forward to presenting this to our retail partners soon.”
Jenz Lawrenz, product manager at Snakebyte said: “We have been the world’s first to release a third party Wii remote with success, and we’ll
try to repeat that with our own version of PlayStation Move.” Some peripheral specialists believe the add-ons will mark the end of ‘gimmick’ accessories. Antigrav’s Robert Orchard said: “We are conscious that consumers of Natal and Move will not only be a lot more technologically savvy, but they will also have a keen eye for design as well as functionality.
Exspect’s video game product manager William Slater added: “More innovative products will keep the market strong and hopefully move gamers away from the gimmick image of motion-based gameplay into more realistic and thrilling experiences.” Both Project Natal and PlayStation Move will be released later this year.
Ruse can boost ‘struggling RTS genre’ says Ubisoft UBISOFT’S Ruse can help turn the tide for the declining real-time strategy genre, the firm has told MCV. Recent RTS titles such as Command & Conquer 4 and Napoleon: Total War failed to match the success of their series’ predecessors. Ubisoft believes its newest IP has everything it needs to avoid the same fate, thanks to accessible gameplay devised to cater for both PC and console strategy fans. “We are very aware of the recent performance of RTS games on PC and consoles, so
we have a challenge ahead of us,” said Ubisoft’s senior brand manager Phil Brannelly. “There are some established RTS brands out there struggling to maintain their past glories but we see that as an opening for people wanting a new and intriguing experience. “With strong marketing and a buzz of excitement present after the beta tests, we’re confident we’ll reach our planned numbers and establish Ruse as a key brand in the RTS genre.” The beta test saw more than one million downloads, indicating that demand for Ruse
BETA SUCCESS: The Ruse beta test received over one million downloads, giving Ubisoft hope for strong sales
could well be strong enough to back Ubisoft’s claims. Consumer attitudes from the test have been positive, giving the publisher the boost it needs to polish Ruse before launch. Brannelly added: “We are very excited about the launch of Ruse following a hugely successful open beta test. Feedback was great and the team is adding the final touches based on those comments to create a very unique offering.” Ruse will be released for Xbox 360, PS3, PC in September. Ubisoft: 01932 578000
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THQ to smash sales of UFC 09 Publisher says UFC 2010 could exceed 3.5m units globally as brand goes mainstream by Dominic Sacco UPCOMING brawler UFC Undisputed 2010 will exceed sales numbers of its predecessor, THQ reckons. UFC 2009 was a surprise hit at retail last year, taking the Chart-Track All Formats No.1, and has shipped more than 3.5m copies worldwide.
game fans and followers of UFC. The PS3 version gets three exclusive fighters and five extra classic fights. Dravinksi also confirmed that DLC will arrive for the game but could neither confirm nor deny what it would consist of. However he was optimistic of UFC as a sports brand.
APPLE: Sales of the iPad have already hit the one million mark, making it a faster seller than the iPhone. The iPad went on sale in the US on April 3rd and sold 300,000 units on day one. EA: The Sims 3 is heading to consoles this autumn, EA has confirmed. The game is being developed for Xbox 360, PS3, Wii and DS with an emphasis on online features.
UFC 2010 is a better game and offers more to consumers, so I think we can eclipse last year’s sales figures. Neven Dravinski, THQ
“The sales numbers don’t lie,” said THQ’s producer of UFC 2010 Neven Dravinski. “The expectations are high but I think the 2010 product is a better, more complete game and offers more for consumers, so I’d like to think we can eclipse last year’s figures with more sales.” The latest instalment adds new fighters, modes and moves in an attempt to target fighting
“It’s the No.1 fighting franchise in the world and that certainly helps a lot,” Dravinski added. “We really wanted to make sure we’re not just a video game representing the UFC, but a digital extension of its brand. I think it’s going to become very mainstream across the world very quickly. “I would also love to keep on working on this game and
BEST BUY: Retailer Best Buy saw its biggest opening day sales last week. It also cut the price of the black Nintendo Wii to £99.99 between April 30th and May 3rd, to celebrate the opening of its Thurrock store. UNDISPUTED: THQ is confident the sport’s popularity will grow
create future titles. As far as what the future holds, it’s up to the consumers. “I’m optimistic that we’ll be able to achieve success.”
UFC 2010 goes on sale for the Xbox 360, PS3 and PSP on May 28th, with a ‘Knockout Pack’ exclusive to HMV.
PAYING UP: Realtime Worlds has revealed APB’s currency
will allow players to purchase subscriptions or in-game items. EA is distributing the PC game. Real Time Worlds: 01382 202821
A NEW digital game downloads price comparison site fronted by an ex-director of Koch Media has gone live. Deals4downloads collates the latest digital offers, and claims consumers can save an average 50 per cent from over 15 partners including Amazon and Steam. CEO Sebastian Lindig has 20 years experience in the games industry having previously worked for Koch Media. He held various positions at the distributor including executive producer and director of online entertainment.
BLIZZARD: Starcraft II has been given a global release date of June 27th, with a digital release to follow. The sci-fi RTS features a new level of online multiplayer over the 1998 original.
THQ: 01483 767656
Realtime reveals Ex-Koch vet heads APB launch details downloads website BRITISH developer Realtime Worlds has revealed the details for its blockbuster MMO, APB. The game is due for release on Friday, July 2nd and has a RRP of £34.99, which includes 50 hours of playtime and free access to the game’s social districts where customisation takes place. Indigo Pearl has been appointed PR partner by the studio to run its press office. RTW has also revealed the business model for APB. Its revenue framework will revolve around ‘RTW points’ – a new in-game currency that
ACTIVISION: Call of Duty: Black Ops will hit shelves on November 9th. The next instalment in the hugely successful Call of Duty franchise is being developed by World at War’s Treyarch.
Lindig said: “The market for digital distribution is young and growing at an extreme pace. “With Deals4Downloads.com we want to bridge the gap between traditional retail business practices and new distribution platforms. “The digital market is just about to become really big. My guess is that in 2010 we will see some real movement here – from both the business and the consumer side.” The website is in a beta phase and is due to launch in the coming months. www.deals4downloads.com
HMV: HMV’s group sales have risen 1.8 per cent for its fiscal year ending April 24th. Sales in HMV stores rose 4.3 per cent while Waterstones’ sales dropped six per cent. Full details of profits will be revealed on June 30th.
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10 MCV 07/05/10
WEEK CAMPAIGN OF THE PTION RED DEAD REDEM
is r Red Dead Redemption fo ign pa m ca r’s sta ck Ro ugh the highlights… enormous. We run thro
TV Rockstar’s largest ever pre-release TV campaign started on April 27th and will run through to May 30th, reaching over five million viewers. Ads will run during the Champions League semi finals and final, and the FA Cup final, as well as the terrestrial TV premieres of 3:10 to Yuma on Channel Five, and The Proposition on Film4. Also, people who view the ad on any Sky, Sky Sports or MTV channel can download and view the longform ad by pressing the green button. CINEMA Rockstar’s first ever on-screen cinema campaign launches on May 14th, with 60-second spots running in 650 screens nationwide. Over 3.5 million admissions will see the ad in Robin Hood and other films during May and June. OUTDOOR A two-week London Underground poster campaign begins from launch. VIDEO ON DEMAND Over 7.5 million spot impressions will be served over the four week campaign from end of April until after launch. Ads will run on 4OD, Sky Box Office, Sky Anytime, MSN, Sky Sports, The Sun, Web TV and more. ONLINE Branded pages, site takeovers and banner ads have driven pre-orders through IGN and GameSpot. The launch campaign begins in earnest from May 10th across IGN, GameSpot, Eurogamer, CVG,
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NowGamer, GamesRadar, VideoGamer, Official Xbox Magazine and more. Rockstar’s first Facebook app, Red Dead Redemption Gunslingers, launched in mid-April. YouTube activity, including a branded channel, MPUs, in-video ads, pre-rolls and a site takeover on launch day, will reach an estimated audience of nine million people. On LoveFilm, a Red Dead branded microsite will host The Proposition to stream for free, supported by site takeovers, banners and newsletters. LoveFilm users will receive DVDs in Red Dead-branded envelopes. XBOX LIVE & PSN Spotlight and video marketplace banners will promote a points giveaway for those who watch the multiplayer video. Full VidZone takeovers, banners and prerolls go live on PSN from the 10th May. PRINT Cover wraps in The Guardian Film & Music and Shortlist will run at launch. DPS ads will also run in Nuts, Zoo, Top Gear, Empire, Four Four Two, Stuff, Total Film, NME, T3, Metal Hammer, various specialist gaming publications and many more, throughout April and May.
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THIS WEEK ON SPLIT/SECOND: VELOCITY...
In Detonator mode, epic powerplays are automatically triggered as you race against the clock to set the fastest time. However, this is a time trial like no other. Sure, you need to focus on racing lines and precision corners but keep an eye out for explosive events designed to take you out and scupper your bid for victory. As you dart between collapsing buildings and toppling towers, expect the unexpected as in detonator mode the difference between victory and defeat can be just a Split/Second.
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14 MCV 07/05/10
BEST BUY IS HERE
Best’s foot forward After finally opening its first UK store, Best Buy claims its games department can match or beat anything the specialists have to offer. Christopher Dring speaks to head of entertainment Marc Spence to learn more about the firm’s ambitious plans for games retail in the UK… IN TERMS of US retailers, Best Buy is without doubt one of the biggest. In America it boasts a 21 per cent share of the consumer electronics market, it runs over 1,150 stores worldwide and employs almost 160,000 staff. So Best Buy’s invasion of the UK market – albeit 12 months late – should not be underestimated. The retail behemoth is hoping to open
ten ‘big box’ stores in the UK over the next 12 months, it believes it can have 80 shops by 2015, with an eventual UK retail estate of over 150. An online store will also go live in the autumn, while the firm claims it will employ 8,000 staff over the next five years. A HEAD START
But Best Buy’s arrival in the UK has not exactly been plain sailing. The head office team was put in place in January 2009 with the plan to launch in the summer – but a combination of factors, including a tough retail climate, meant the firm delayed its launch by almost a year.
WELCOME TO BEST BUY THURROCK The inaugural Best Buy opened on Friday, April 30th at the West Thurrock retail park in Essex. The store is 50,000 sq ft and sells computers, TVs, entertainment, cameras, mobiles, appliances and more. There is also an area dedicated to ‘Green Tech’, which features electric cars, scooters and motorcycles. A key feature of Best Buy Thurrock is its experiential elements – there’s an area for sports fans to sit and watch the latest matches, 3D and HD TV
immersion areas, and an Ultimate Gaming Room. The entertainment department takes up almost 20 per cent of the store, with games accounting for half of this space. The firm’s next stores will be based in Hedge End, Southampton and Merry Hill in the West Midlands, both of which are scheduled to open in June. The Aintree store in Liverpool will follow shortly after, with a Croydon outlet scheduled for autumn and a store on Cribbs Causeway in Bristol set for spring 2011.
This delay has given Best Buy’s rivals in the consumer electronics space time to prepare. DSGi – Best Buy’s key rival in the UK – revealed in March 2009 it would roll out 75 Currys Megastores. The first of which can be found just across the road from Best Buy’s debut Thurrock outlet. Meanwhile Tesco, who is about to overtake Comet as the UK’s third largest electronics retailer, has decided to mimic Best Buy’s customer service model by recruiting 1,000 additional employees for its electricals department. All of this has taken place before Best Buy UK has even opened its doors – but the firm isn’t worried. “Best Buy believes it can add value to the UK retail sector and help grow it,” says the company’s head of entertainment Marc Spence. “It is a
competitive market but, as we’ve seen over the past 12 months, some of our competitors in the electronics space have upped their game, and this has got to be a good thing for the UK consumer. So I think with us joining the market, already you’re seeing UK retail move in the right direction.” BESTING THE SPECIALISTS
But it’s not just consumer electronic retailers that have something to fear from Best Buy’s arrival. The company’s entertainment offering is huge, far superior to what DSGi and Comet currently promote and is even on par with the likes of GAME, HMV and Blockbuster. The firm stocks games and hardware for all formats, there is an extensive second-hand offering, own-brand peripherals, entire areas dedicated to game play and even a gaming room. Meanwhile, Best Buy has specialist staff just for the games
MCV 07/05/10 15
BEST BUY IS HERE department. These ‘Blue Shirts’ have been sent on a nine-week training course, and hail from specialist retailers such as GAME and Gamestation. “We want to be famous for entertainment,” continues Spence. “If you look at some competitors of ours, especially in the electronics space, they do gaming as an add-on. Games is not an add-on for us; it is an integral part of Best Buy’s proposition. “We can absolutely take on HMV and GAME. First of all, we have a lot of people coming to us to buy hardware. And a Blu-ray player doesn’t do anything until you put software on to it. There’s a direct
many gaming stores. We do have an expectation that people will come to us on a regular basis to buy their games.” BEST OF A BAD BUNCH
Despite best intentions through the use of game pods and the like, UK games retail is often criticised for not letting customers go hands-on with the products. HMV has attempted to address the situation with the acquisition of Gamerbase and their subsequent roll-out into HMV stores, but there is still little in the way of demonstration areas for the likes of
We can absolutely take on HMV and GAME. Video games is an integral part of Best Buy’s proposition. Marc Spence, Best Buy
relationship for us between hardware and software that our competitors don’t have. “We also have a range that will match or beat anybody in this space. We will be competitive in price. We do have preowned. And we have a demonstration area that our competitors will not be able to manage. This is particularly key as we move towards the motion capture technology, such as Natal and Move. You need to be able to demonstrate that tech. “Our demonstration areas alone are bigger than
Nintendo Wii, Guitar Hero or indeed adult titles. And this is an area Best Buy believes it can lead the way in. At its Thurrock store, the firm has large open areas for Wii and Guitar Hero demos, there are game pods for DS and PSP, while the Ultimate Gaming Room can house those 18-rated titles for the more mature gamer. The company also wants publishers to come show their latest titles to Best
16 MCV 07/05/10
BEST BUY IS HERE Buy customers before they’re even due to hit shelves. “We did a lot of research from the offset, and the customers said loud and clear that they wanted to see, feel and play the product,” adds Spence. “They said they were let down in this space and that they couldn’t go hands-on with any of our competitors. When we were building the model to bring entertainment to Best Buy in the UK, that’s where we started. “You have people spending tens of millions and more on bringing Modern Warfare or FIFA or Heavy Rain to market. And we then put it in a small plastic box and that is all you see.
Customers said they were let down by our competitors and couldn’t go hands-on with the product. Marc Spence, Best Buy
“Consumers say they want more than that. Gaming is not cheap. A game can cost £40 and people want to see it. “With our gaming space, we want to bring people into the store pre-release. If you have a big product coming out, we would like to invite customers so they can play it. We want to invite the producers of the games into our stores early and create a mini-E3 for them to showcase their titles in the best possible environment.” When it comes to games, Best Buy has some big plans. Its head office team boasts years of experience in this sector (see Meet The Team, below), and the company is confident it has a big part to play in the future of games retail. “We need to stand up on our own,” concludes Spence. “I believe we have created something in gaming that makes us world class. And that’s all I’ve got to worry about.”
Best Buy UK’s head of entertainment Marc Spence boasts over 15 years in video games retail, and this includes a four year-stint as continental Europe MD for GAME Group
MEET THE TEAM Best Buy’s head office team boasts some experienced heads from the world of gaming. The firm’s head of entertainment is Marc Spence. Spence began his retail career working for John Menzies as group buying and merchandise manager in 1994, before joining DSGi in 1997 where he worked for four and a half years as group buying director for games and PC software.
Following this, Spence joined GAME Group as MD for continental Europe, a role he held for four years before joining Home Retail Group in 2007 as head of strategic development. Spence has been at Best Buy since January last year and looks after music, games and DVD in the UK. The firm’s games boss is James Cooke. Cooke joined Best Buy following a two year stint at EUK – he has also
worked as head of games for Virgin and HMV and was senior buyer at WHSmith for four years. Meanwhile, the firm’s head of computing is former DSGi games boss René Wright. “Between James and I alone we have a lot of experience in the gaming market,” says Spence. “It is a small, tight team but a very experienced one.
“That’s what makes us different. We are very focused on gaming. From a head office perspective we have employed people that have a lot of knowledge in the gaming market, and indeed from a blue shirt perspective. “As well as the nine-week training course these guys have been on, we hired them because they are gamers. They all have various backgrounds, and the likes of GAME is amongst them.”
18 MCV 07/05/10
MCV INTERVIEW ALAN PRITCHARD, VICE PRESIDENT SALES AND MARKETING, SEGA US
Sega’s Western front Sega Europe and America have combined to form Sega West. Christopher Dring speaks to Sega America’s new vice president of sales and marketing, Alan Pritchard, to discuss the publisher’s re-structure and its ambitious plans in digital…
Last month’s Football Manager Handheld and the upcoming Sonic The Hedgehog 4 are Sega’s latest digital releases
Could you take us through Sega’s western re-structure? To put it simply, Sega America and Sega Europe is now Sega West. The mid- to long-term vision is that Sega’s digital business will be based in the San Francisco office, while packaged goods will be handled by Sega Europe. The thinking behind this is that the talent pool on the West Coast of America and around San Francisco makes it a more logical place to set up our digital division. We are now in the process of looking for a senior vice president of digital to be based in the US. That’s not to say we’re not going to do anything digital until that person joins us. We are continuing to do various things in this space. We’ve had good sales of digital PC products; we’ve had reasonable success with premium DLC for our PC games and recent releases such as Aliens vs Predator. And also we are seeing other Sega IP made available over PlayStation Network, Virtual Console, XBLA and obviously in the mobile arena. But once this new digital person has been put in place, and he or she has decided how to structure that side of the business, we may see Sega go into a number of different areas. In terms of packaged goods, the teams based in Chiswick already manage that side of the business for EMEA. This includes all of our direct territory offices – so UK, France, Germany, Spain, Benelux and Australia. But also for our other key European markets. So it makes sense for them to now manage that process in the US. Because of this, we’ve made a few role changes. I am moving over to the US to head up the packaged side of the business
for America, while Jurgen Post will take over my current role as MD for Europe. Jurgen was previously in charge of Sega Benelux. What can you tell us about the job losses? Most are aware of the reduction in headcount at Sega Europe and Sega America. I don’t think this is any different to what any other publisher is going through. This is just ensuring that Sega West can continue its growth plans and continue to make profit over the next three to five years. It is certainly not reflective of our fiscal performance. In Europe we’ve had another very strong year, which finished end of March. A lot of this has been planned for a while. We need to continue to make profit, not just grow our revenues. Why does Sega feel the need to keep digital and boxed separate? They are separate divisions but we are
execution and implementation will be done by all of the territory teams. Does Sega think that digital sales will continue to impact retail? We still think packaged goods is a very important part of our business, it is still the biggest part of our business. There is a lot of talk about digital being of equal value to packaged, or certainly becoming so in the next few years. And we just need to make sure we are at the front of the market leading and not following. There seems to be a digital goldrush happening at present. Take-Two, Capcom, Codemasters and now yourself have all told MCV you want to be leaders in digital. Is there really room for all of you? It’s an interesting one. There are many areas of digital. There’s the download of PC products through the likes of Steam and other services, there’s premium DLC, there’s mini-games and full games downloadable via the first party
Sega’s digital business needs an increased level of focus. We want to be at the front of the market leading, not following. Alan Pritchard, Sega
all part of the same company. At the moment the digital content coming from Sega is either our existing IP or digital versions of existing products on current formats. But there are many areas of digital that Sega is not involved in. And it probably needs a different set of eyes on it and an increased level of focus. The two divisions won’t necessarily run poles part, because a consumer in France or Germany or America will still buy packaged goods and potentially download digital copies from us. Our PR and marketing will be done very much together. The packaged studio focus will be driven by people in the UK and Europe, while the digital roadmap, strategy and the content will be driven by a bunch of guys in San Francisco. The actual
networks, there’s streaming of online games, there’s mobile games, there’s iPhone applications – there is quite a few digital formats and applications out there at the moment. We are obviously looking at our own business, listening to the rest of the market, engaging with first parties as well as company’s such as Apple. There are lots of arguments that would suggest there is plenty of room to move in digital. But there does seem to be a bit of a herd mentality at the moment, with everyone rushing to every digital opportunity. We have seen this in the past, about three or five years ago on mobile phones. Mobile gaming used to be quite buoyant and successful at one point for publishers and developers. But suddenly there were too many products
MCV 07/05/10 19
on the market place, too much stuff available for free, and it became a declining market – until Apple and iPhone reinvigorated it. It is difficult thing for myself or anyone to say that absolutely yes, there is room for everyone. But it is still something we need to be a part of and we need to invest in. The strategy is to be at the forefront of that, and not at the back of the queue. Is your new episodic game, Sonic 4, representative of the direction we can expect Sega to go in? As you can imagine, we’ve got a locker full of great IP from old Sega formats that we can potentially bring to market. Strangely, the packaged goods side of the business are screaming out for a packaged version of Sonic 4. So it is interesting to see that some of the titles we plan to release on digital, will have great appeal to the other side of the business. There are a number of digital releases that we have slated for the next 12 to 18 months, most of which haven’t been announced yet. As you can imagine, there’s a world of old Sega IP that we can bring to market. When it comes to retail, you’ve had some big hits but also a number of titles that haven’t met sales expectations. Is retail perhaps proving too competitive? I think it is key to find the least competitive time to release products. For the last two years it has been very difficult
for publishers to find a free release window, where they have a great share of voice from a PR point-of-view and enough retail space. We do try and avoid going head-tohead with key competition products, either from the same genre or other big titles such as sequel IP that could suck a lot of consumer money out of the marketplace. I think when you get the release timing as good as you can get it, with a free three or four weeks, you have good PR and marketing and the products is of good quality, then you have a good opportunity at retail. I believe we achieved that with Bayonetta and Aliens vs Predator. Looking forward, what are your thoughts on the new hardware Move, Natal and 3DS? From some of the tech demos we have seen, these products certainly look rather exciting. The first party companies on Move and Natal have given us broad brush indications as to launch timings and potential availability. It certainly feels like there is going to be a be a big opportunity, although we are waiting for E3 to get that next layer of detail. Sega has had various discussion with Microsoft and Sony. And at E3 we can share more about our thoughts on these products and our potential involvement with them.
Former Europe boss Alan Pritchard will move to the US as part of Sega West’s re-structure
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Wednesday July 14th, 2010 Hilton Metropole Hotel, Brighton, UK
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MCV 07/05/10 23
MCV INTERVIEW PETE HINES, GLOBAL VICE PRESIDENT OF MARKETING, BETHESDA
Bethesda’s global VP of marketing Pete Hines talks new IP, the MMO market and expanding across Europe...
Simply the Beth Bethesda’s upcoming release slate is brimming with promising new IP, not to mention the sequel to its 2008 smash hit, Fallout 3. James Batchelor speaks to Bethesda’s marketing boss Pete Hines to discuss the company’s line-up, digital downloads and its MMO ambitions…
Fallout: New Vegas and Brink are on idTech 4 technology that allows for Fallout 3 was a massive hit. Can Bethesda’s big titles of the year. great visuals. New Vegas really live up to this? What are your expectations for Brink also draws on the wealth of We’ve built on the strengths of Fallout 3 these titles? experience and talent that Splash has and added a whole host of features and I think both games bring something assembled from other studios and touches that further improve the unique to gamers, and to experience for gamers. It is our desire to have as their respective genres. By taking all of that to a Fallout 3 was new setting like Vegas, direct a relationship as tremendously effective for which is a great fit for the possible with retail partners in us and appealed to a wide Fallout brand, it gives us our new European territories. range of gamers. Fallout: every reason to believe that Pete Hines, Bethesda New Vegas builds on that this game can be a huge by playing to the strengths of Fallout 3 blockbuster titles, and adds to that success for us. while at the same time adding a whole further with innovations in a number of Based on what we’re seeing so far host of new features and experiences. key areas. I think we’re very confident from the response at retail and from Brink is obviously entering a heavily in our ability to deliver a game that gamers, I expect New Vegas to do even competitive genre, but it has the legacy stands out from the pack, and our ability better than Fallout 3. We’ll have to wait of Splash Damage’s expertise in making as a publisher to get it the attention that and see just how much better when the great multiplayer experiences and builds it deserves. game is released.
24 MCV 07/05/10
MCV INTERVIEW PETE HINES, GLOBAL VICE PRESIDENT OF MARKETING, BETHESDA Rage is the first title to be published by Bethesda after your parent ZeniMax’s acquisition of id Software. What do you think id brings to the table? id Software brings a wealth of experience and expertise in the first person shooter genre. To have a group like id working as an internal studio for Bethesda is a tremendous advantage. I think what they’re working on with Rage and Doom 4 is going to show the world their true potential. Brink is a new IP, as is Hunted: The Demon’s Forge. Are you confident these new titles can find their share of voice? We expect both of these titles to do really well. They are new IPs, but they are both games that draw on the strengths of the teams making them. Brink is being made by a studio that made their mark in the shooter space with some terrific multiplayer titles, and Hunted is being made by a team who
What’s also important is that we continue to push things and innovate, even within established properties. As you’ve seen with work we’ve done on Elder Scrolls games, and Fallout 3, we aren’t afraid to take chances and try new things. I think for us what makes a video game stand out is to find out what kind of experience you want the player to have, what you want them to feel while they’re playing it, and then polish, polish, polish until you get that experience just right. We will support new IP and make them stand out by helping development to focus on what makes their game great to begin with. We will give them whatever tools they need to make it happen, and then go out and make sure everyone knows about the title before it’s released. We’ve shown the ability to bring a lot of attention to our games and get people interested because we focus on a few key titles.
We’re confident in our ability to deliver a game that stands out from the pack, and to get it the attention it deserves. Paul Hines, Bethesda
have been around a long time and have a huge passion for doing a dungeon crawl game like it’s never been delivered before. Is new IP a key area for Bethesda? I think a healthy combination of new and established properties is important.
What can we expect from future established IP such as Elder Scrolls? We aren’t talking about what we’re up to next on The Elder Scrolls or when you’ll be able to play another one. You’ll just have to wait and see. But our established franchises are clearly something we take very seriously.
Bethesda has invested heavily in the MMO sector. Why have you done this and what can we expect from Bethesda in this genre? It was something we felt like we were ready to do, and do in the right way. ZeniMax Online Studios’ head Matt Firor is a guy with a ton of MMO experience, who we felt was the right man to lead a studio and put together an experienced team to make a great MMO. That’s what he’s been doing the last couple of years. I think the challenges of making an MMO are well documented. You have an incredibly successful, well-entrenched market leader; you have a number of other titles in the space each trying to use a different business model to be successful and competitive. It is not something to be undertaken quickly or lightly. Perhaps some of your biggest releases last year were the Fallout 3 DLC packs. How has this shaped your digital strategy going forward? They’ve done extraordinarily well. Fallout 3 is the type of game that benefits well from DLC, where people are playing the game for hundreds of hours and want additional content to add to their existing game. I don’t really think it has affected our strategy so much as verified that we’re on the right path in terms of the kinds of DLC we provide. Bethesda released DLC at retail. What role will retailers play with digital distribution in the future? Retail continues to be really important when it comes to giving gamers
additional content, because there are still plenty of people who want to play our DLC but don’t have online connectivity. So offering it at retail gives us the ability to do that – a trend we hope to continue going forward whenever possible. You have recently opened new offices in Germany and France. How will this help Bethesda grow its presence in Europe? It is our desire to have as direct a relationship as possible with retail partners and to have direct control of how are products are promoted and distributed. The opening of these new international offices is another step in that process. France and Germany are hugely important territories to us in our global strategy, and bringing onboard experts in these markets like Frank Matzke (Germany) and Julie Chalmette (France) further strengthens our publishing operations in Europe. But will the UK remain as one of your core markets? The UK is hugely important for us as it’s our largest market in Europe and second only to North America worldwide. We’ve got a very strong sales and marketing team dedicated just to the UK market, and our success there to date has been due to the tremendous – and I should mention, award-winning – work they’ve done to date. Moving forward I think you’ll see our presence in the UK market will only become bigger.
FALLOUT: NEW VEGAS Formats: PS3, 360, PC Release date: Autumn 2011
BRINK Formats: PS3, 360, PC Release date: Autumn 2011
New Vegas is the anticipated follow-up to Bethesda’s multimillion selling 2008 RPG, and is under development at Obsidian.
Brit studio Splash Damage is hard at work on this unique FPS, the first original title from the developer.
HUNTED: THE DEMON’S FORGE Formats: PS3, 360, PC Release date: Q1 2011 This third-person co-op fantasy action game is being developed at inXile Entertainment.
RAGE Formats: PS3, 360, PC Release date: 2011
DOOM 4 Formats: TBC Release date: TBC
This new IP makes use of the new id Tech 5 engine and combines racing and first person shooter gameplay.
Little is known about id Software’s super sequel, with more information coming to QuakeCon this August.
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28 MCV 07/05/10
MCV AWARDS 2010: THE VIDEO
Lights, Camera, Action! Some of the UK trade’s most important execs left their inhibitions at the door for the latest MCV Awards video. But what was it like behind the scenes? Chris Dring finds out…
NOW IN ITS third year, the MCV “The stars of the video were great Awards video has become an fun to work with and it was good to see industry tradition. some faces from last year’s video,” says It’s the chance for UK execs to leave video director Lauren Pushkin. their sensible, business thinking to one “You must understand, to stand up in side and let loose – all for the comedic a studio, wearing a slightly unflattering benefit of attendees packed into The costume and mime to song in-front of a Brewery, London to see the awards. film crew with me shouting directions, And the giggles that emanated through the room All the stars of the video on April 22nd confirmed were great fun to work with that our video partner PMA and it was good to see some had produced yet another hit. faces from last year’s video. This year’s production Lauren Pushkin, Director saw the likes of EA’s Keith Ramsdale, 505’s Ralph PittStanley, Activision’s Andrew Brown, can be especially daunting for people Ubisoft’s Mark Slaughter, Future’s James who are more used to an office. They Binns, Sega’s John Clark and Nintendo’s all did exceptionally well and threw Dawn Paine sing and dance along to themselves into it with enthusiasm. I The Buggle’s ‘Video Killed The Radio hope they enjoyed the results.” Star’. All of them were put through The video itself was shot in a green their paces by the talented folk at PMA. screen studio, allowing PMA to create
all the environments in post-production. The crew had to make sure they get all the footage they needed in one go, and ensure everything was lit properly before spending a month editing it all together. “Everything is shot in high definition and the ‘rushes’ are transferred to a PC and checked immediately in the studio,” explains PMA CEO Mark Cluer. “The next stage is to create a first draft edit in Avid of the whole video, with the green backgrounds still in place. It’s very important at this stage to get the lip-sync as good as possible and hide any issues with another shot or cut-away. “We will now have a full video with music that requires all the environments to be put in place. For this we use a variety of tools to create the motion graphics including After Effects,
WHAT THE STARS THOUGHT… The great and the good of the UK games industry – including leading execs from Activision, EA, Ubisoft, Nintendo, Bethesda, Sega and 505 Games – dressed up in silly outfits, showed off their dance moves and mimed their hearts out on the set of the MCV Awards video. Here these execs share their experiences from the video shoot… Mark Hennessey, Ubisoft As my musical talent didn’t extend much past a quick game of Guitar Hero or Rock Band, I decided a new strategy was needed to realise my life-long dream to be in a band. And my constant nagging to [MCV publisher] Stuart Dinsey at the MCV/Xbox Quizzes finally paid dividends and he let me in – mainly to shut me up, but that’s not the point.
So the actual day of the shoot came and I was quite nervous as we hadn’t been told too much about the theme – and I’d seen the way you’d stitched people up in previous years. Anyway, my fears were unfounded and I was offered a rather fetching silver shirt/trouser combo. I’m not sure the glasses helped the overall look but I did enjoy wearing make up again. The shoot itself was not quite as glamorous as I thought it’d be and there was lots of stop-starting. And the fact that I couldn’t play the drums to save my life didn’t help either. Everyone on set was very encouraging but I could tell they were laughing or crying inside. Thankfully, the wonders of technology were put to good use for the final video – and f**k me if I didn’t look like a drummer in the final video. More importantly I didn’t look as stupid as some others. Overall I had a great time and next year I’m going to ask Stuart if I can sing.
Dawn Paine, Nintendo Shooting my second MCV Awards video was a daunting task and one where I took my method acting to new levels. Always good stuff and a reminder in these tough days of what a fun industry we are in the UK. John Clark, Sega Bright lights, big city. Broadway to the West End. Stars of the silver screen. None of these are relevant, it was more like putting your head in the stocks at the school fair and being pelted with wet sponges. But we all like to share the spotlight even if we look a bit silly – all for fun of course.
It used to be that the camera would visit the offices and we’d pretend to work while we were filmed for a production representing the hardworking but, fun games industry. Nowadays it’s different; the fun has gone and been replaced with scripts, make up, choreography, call sheets, the heat from the studio lights, the demanding director, the cold bacon sandwiches on set, the re-takes. And then there are the critics after the premiere. Mark Slaughter, Ubisoft Have to say I was a bit worried when I walked in and saw Ralph PittStanley kitted out in a lovely one-piece silver suit. Apart from that moment of fear it was a good laugh, especially the wardrobe call.
MCV 07/05/10 29
MCV AWARDS 2010: THE VIDEO
Check ou yourse t the video lf http:// by visiting tinyur l.c 547b5 om/3 t
The video looked very polished, especially considering I had no idea what I was doing playing that keyboard. Andrew Brown, Activision When I reached the set I was worried. The location was a dump, and there was nothing in the studio-cum-shed other than green walls and a chair. Then I noticed other big companies were there making big commercials and I started to recognise a few people from TV, so I realised it can’t be that bad. Then I saw Keith Ramsdale strutting his stuff. 150 takes just to get the flick of his head right – so obviously they pay real attention to detail. When I saw my make up and clothing I thought you must be joking – and then I saw with Ralph was going to wear and I felt smart and fashionable again.
The production crew was awesome – they controlled everything down to the millimetre. One take was enough for me: the extra ones were clearly just for the crew to justify their artistic credentials At the end of the day I didn’t see how all of this was going to be patched together but the video is awesome and I’m amazed. Keith Ramsdale, EA I arrived at this warehouse at 8.30am to be sent for make up, a new hairdo and an outfit I wore 25 years ago. I was then told to rock out, which isn’t something I’m really used to at that time of the morning, especially without alcohol. If you get asked to do it next year then ask for an afternoon slot and get
to the pub first or have a big night before and don’t go to bed. So without the benefit of a few sherbets, I spent the first hour feeling like a complete berk until the inner drama queen kicked in and there was no stopping me. Once you lose your inhibitions it really is a great way to spend a morning. It’s also very funny to see your industry colleagues file in one by one with a look of absolute fear. Well done to the crew for turning our efforts into something quite passable. The work of pure genius. Rachael Grant, Ubisoft Filming the MCV Awards video was definitely an experience unlike anything I’ve ever had before. Although it took a while to feign that I had
ever had a guitar in my hands before, I seemed to just about get the hang of it as we were wrapping up. Obviously having to work with amateurs like Mark Slaughter and Mark Hennessey was difficult, but by the end of the day I had taught them everything I know. I loved the song and the 1980s gear that we got given to dress up in – particularly my lovely, shiny zebra print jacket. The hair and make-up girls were superb – making my hair look very There’s Something About Mary-esque, and since watching the final video people have even speculated I was wearing a wig. My highlights of the day were the very tight trousers the boys were forced wear, the sexy glasses, and being told by Stuart Dinsey that he had never before seen three people more uncomfortable holding a musical instrument.
30 MCV 07/05/10
MCV AWARDS 2010: THE VIDEO StudioMax 3D and BorisFX. Then the last stage is to layer in the external games footage onto the various screens in the environments and render out the final version in high-res HD. “The video is then graded, sound mixed and produced in a Quicktime format ready for the first showing at the MCV Awards.” Post-production took a month to complete, but the shoot itself was no walk in the park either. The crew worked from 6am to 8pm, and had to deal with their fair share of technical issues and wardrobe malfunctions. “The day itself was great fun and there were a few stand-out moments including the period when the song playback decided to break; Keith Ramsdale had to do all his rehearsals to the song being played on an iPhone and rebroadcast over a bunch of the crew’s walki-talkies strategically placed around him,” continues Cluelr. “We also had a wardrobe failure; one of the cast members forgot to give his measurements to Jess the sylist the
before the shoot. Jess guessed, guessed wrong and we had to take a pair of scissors to the costume so we could squeeze our nameless star into it.” Pushkin adds: “With any filming the key challenge is normally time – there is never enough. Also, any problems through the day such as a missing cast member, someone taking too long in make-up, waiting for a prop to be delivered or too many takes can have a huge effect and potentially spoil the entire shoot. “Thankfully, we did not have any of these problems on the day – everyone turned up on time and had learnt their lines.” The video premiere took place at the MCV Awards 2010 in London on April 22nd, and the end result silenced any critics. The cast was in fine form, the direction was spot-on and the entire production was, as one commenter on MCVUK.com put it, ‘Excellent. They get better every year!’ Check out the video yourself by visiting http://tinyurl.com/3547b5t.
PMA DIGITAL – WHERE IDEAS WORK PMA are an award winning digital creative agency based in London’s Primrose Hill, who work with some of the world’s largest consumer brands. They specialise in digital advertising, video production, digital CRM, web site & e-commerce production, all with a focus on exceptional design and providing the best user experience. As an agency PMA are always pushing technical and creative boundaries to deliver campaigns that really work hard and deliver proven results.
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www.princeofpersia.com ÂŠ 2010 Ubisoft Entertainment. All Rights Reserved. Based on Prince of PersiaÂŽ created by Jordan Mechner. Ubisoft and the Ubisoft logo are trademarks of Ubisoft Entertainment in the U.S. and/or other countries. Prince of Persia and Prince of Persia The Forgotten Sands are trademarks of Jordan Mechner in the US and/or other countries used under license by Ubisoft Entertainment. â€œ2â€?, â€œPlayStationâ€? and â€œĂƒ.â€? are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. Microsoft, Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox LIVE, and the Xbox logos are trademarks of the Microsoft group of companies. Trademarks are property of their respective owners. Nintendo DS is a trademark of Nintendo.
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www.ubisoft.com ÂŠ 2010 Ubisoft Entertainment. All Rights Reserved. Based on Prince of PersiaÂŽ created by Jordan Mechner. Ubisoft and the Ubisoft logo are trademarks of Ubisoft Entertainment in the U.S. and/or other countries. Prince of Persia and Prince of Persia The Forgotten Sands are trademarks of Jordan Mechner in the US and/or other countries used under license by Ubisoft Entertainment.
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MCV 07/05/10 35
GameSpot hires new section editor Jane Douglas joins from MSN Brian Baglow heads to Revolver PR Bethesda hires two international MDs Douglas becomes section editor for GameSpot, looking after news, reviews, previews, audio and video content
GAMESPOT Specialist gaming website GameSpot has appointed JANE DOUGLAS as its new section editor. Douglas has previous editorial experience working for MSN’s Tech & Gadgets channel,
writing features, news and previews on technology and video games, as well as covering key industry events such as E3. Douglas has also appeared in episodes of Inside Xbox’s Sent U A Message.
REVOLVER Industry veteran BRIAN BAGLOW has joined digital PR agency Revolver as its new head of interactive entertainment. He will work on covering all aspects of the gaming market. MD of Revolver PR IAIN BRUCE said: “When the opportunity arose to bring Baglow’s expertise on board, it made sense to grab him and give Revolver access to the whole of the games market.”
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LUNCH PR RAMONA DE SOUZA has been promoted to senior
account executive at Lunch PR, having worked successfully with a number of clients. Ramona has focused on Mindscape’s U-Sing brand and Koch’s casual gaming account. Lunch says she has been instrumental in securing coverage in mainstream press. BETHESDA The Fallout 3 developer-publisher has hired FRANK MATZKE and JULIE CHALMETTE as its two new international MDs for Germany and France respectively. “Frank and Julie’s extensive knowledge of their territories will help us to maximise our upcoming titles’ potential,” said
SEAN BRENNAN, MD of Bethesda Softworks Europe. REALVIEW Technology and gaming accessories manufacturer RealView has appointed DAN O’MAHONY as business development manager and BRENDAN DORE as channel development manager to spearhead its presence in the EMEA regions. “We are delighted Dan and Brendan have joined the team,” said EAMONN ANSBRO, RealView’s executive director.
RETAILBIZ RECOMMENDED GAMES PRICE CHECK CHARTS NEW RELEASES
FULL SPEED AHEAD Disney’s arcade racer Split/Second: Velocity zooms P38 towards retail
MGS: PEACE WALKER P40 Konami says the latest Metal Gear Solid is PSP’s biggest title yet ACHTUNG PANZER P43 This World War II strategy sim is the latest PC title from Mamba Games PROJECT RUNWAY P44 Namco Bandai brings the popular US fashion series to the Wii NEW RELEASES P46 MCV provides a comprehensive list of all upcoming game releases in the UK HIGH STREET P48 This week we speak to Paul Saunby from Grainger Games and check game prices in Manchester
RETAILBIZ: SPLIT/SECOND: VELOCITY 38 MCV 07/05/10
Much hyped arcade racer Split/Second: Velocity explodes onto Xbox 360, PS3 and PC…
by Dominic Sacco DISNEY INTERACTIVE shifts its presence in the racing market up a gear with Split/Second: Velocity, amid a hail of acclaim from games journalists for its unique take on the racing genre. The game is set within the world of a fictional reality TV show whereby drivers must trigger explosive events that can alter the track or take out opponent’s vehicles. Disney Interactive is confident the game will prove to be a success at retail. “Our expectations are that Split/Second: Velocity will be a success both commercially and critically,” says product manager James Thornby. “It is a quality title developed by one of the best studios, innovation is key
and it expands beyond the racing genre with epic action sequences rivalling the best games and entertainment media. “Consumers will get a game packed full of thrills that they can’t put down.” Disney has been successful at launching new franchises in the past, including family-friendly action titles Club Penguin and off-road racer Pure, which was well-received by the press and featured in an Xbox 360 console
on aggregator website Metacritic, putting the new racer in good stead. SPLITTING GENRES
Split/Second pushes the racing genre to the limit with its blend of movie-like action sequences and fast-paced racing. Players can detonate bridges rigged with explosives, dodge crash-landing planes and even cause a meltdown on the course which runs through a power plant. This is a key summer release Players can race in 12 episodes across five for us, not only because it’s a locations including an high quality title but because airport, docks and it has core gamer appeal. power plant. The James Thornby, Disney ability to alter the scenery means there are multiple routes bundle from Microsoft last Christmas. throughout each track, with 72 unique Pure was also produced by the same events to discover in total. development team that worked on The game also boasts a range of Split/Second, Black Rock Studio, and modes such as Race, Detonator – pitting received an average review score of 85
RETAILBIZ: SPLIT/SECOND: VELOCITY WWW.MCVUK.COM
MCV 07/05/10 39
HIGH VELOCITY MARKETING Disney has a mammoth marketing campaign planned for Split/Second, including…
players against the track as cinematic events occur by themselves – and Survival, where gamers must avoid explosive barrels and drone cars to stay on the track for as long as possible. After building up a power bar, drivers can gain access to Split/Second’s unique ‘Power Plays’ – items or points on the track which can change the pace of the race. This can be a simple boost via a shortcut in the track or an explosion which destroys an entire building, blocking the path of other drivers. Thornby adds: “Black Rock is doing something completely different in the racing genre and is moving away from the fixation on hyper-realistic driving simulations by creating a completely different gameplay experience. “There is an incredible level of depth, diversity and innovation in the gameplay, some of which has never been seen in the genre.
“I believe we have the real difference in the genre, from a studio that has won the E3 racing award two years running.”
RELEASED: MAY 21 FORMATS: 360, PS3, PC PUBLISHER: DISNEY DEVELOPER: BLACK ROCK STUDIO
Split/Second has already received a number of awards, including E3 2009’s prestigious Game Critics Award for best racing game. “Split/Second: Velocity is a key summer release for us, not only because it is such a high quality title, but because unlike some of our more family orientated titles like The Princess and the Frog, Split/Second has an additional core gamer appeal,” comments Thornby. “Most importantly this game embodies the innovation, quality and pure entertainment that you will continue to see in our releases planned later in the year.” With Black Rock’s established racing game pedigree, Disney’s strong back
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record and the game’s mass appeal, Split/Second is ready to drive its way into retailers as a mutli-platform success. Thornby adds: “Reception from the media has been fantastic and we are just getting first feedback on reviews, which are looking resoundingly positive and will create a drive to purchase. “We had no doubts about the quality of the game and the reaction from consumers who have played the game has been fantastic.” Split/Second: Velocity will be released for Xbox 360, PS3 and PC on May 21st.
ONLINE PR coverage will run across several gaming websites, as well as an official downloadable Split/Second: Velocity magazine on Gamerzines. PRINT Advertising will appear in consumer print and trade press publications. RETAIL Disney claims there will be a heavy Split/Second presence at retail with in-store trialling. EVENTS Consumers had the chance to play the game at The Gadget Show Live and the demo is live now. TV / CINEMA Adverts will appear on pub TV and extensive cinema spots aim to immerse viewers in the game. Project manager James Thornby says: “The most impressive thing is that the creative design is largely taken from in-game footage. “You will not miss this one. We are expecting a high conversion to sale.”
RETAILBIZ: METAL GEAR SOLID: PEACE WALKER 40 MCV 07/05/10
Snake returns in the latest Metal Gear Solid epic, billed as the most anticipated exclusive to grace the PSP… by Dominic Sacco METAL GEAR SOLID has become one of Konami’s most popular and established gaming franchises ever. Since the first title’s release on the original PlayStation in 1999 the stealth series has branched out with a range of sequels and spin-offs. In 2008 MGS4 sold 1m copies during its first week on sale in Europe alone. MGS: Peace Walker is the latest PSPonly game in the series and adds a new story, four-player co-op, RTS and RPG elements as well as boss cameos from Capcom’s Monster Hunter series. “We have good hopes for Peace Walker, which has been produced by Mr Kojima as the next full entry in the series,” says Konami UK’s marketing manager Rosemarie Dalton. PSP WALKER
“It is probably the most complete PSP title for the format, using the various capabilities of the hardware, built within a stunning game engine that brings all the story-telling, aesthetic prowess and action set-pieces that Mr Kojima is famed for. “Peace Walker is the definitive MGS title for PSP
and doesn’t hold back just because it is players to interact and build a team by on a handheld.” sharing weapons, items and even life The latest MGS game takes place gauges in the heat of battle. ‘Snake after the events of PS2’s best-seller Formation’ lets one player take the lead Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater. Players take Peace Walker is the definitive control of the legendary MGS title for PSP and doesn’t Naked Snake – or Big hold back just because it is Boss – who must lead an army to protect a nation on a handheld. without a military and Rosamarie Dalton, Konami establish ‘Outer Heaven,’ a familiar name to fans of the Metal while others can focus on defense. Gear series. Dalton adds: “Peace Walker is as Gameplay action-packed and crammed with additions new elements as any new MGS include cotitle would be. op which “New elements such as co-op allows missions, the huge bosses that the series is famed for and a wealth of new weaponry and gameplay additions make it a
stunning advance for the series, and probably the most anticipated PSP title of all time.” Peace Walker also features a range of cameos from other brands including dinosaurs from Monster Hunter, Snake’s Sony Walkman and even packets of Doritos to add to bring the game’s epic story to life. “Mr Kojima knows what people want from MGS, and then goes beyond that,” says Dalton. “As such, a load of new surprises will delight both fans of the series, without alienating any newcomers.” Konami previously announced a PSP Peace Walker console bundle due for release in the US and Canada, but this will not make it to UK stores. Dalton adds: “The bundle is not planned for the UK, but will not impact on sales at all.” Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker will be released for PSP on June 18th.
RELEASED: JUNE 18 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: KONAMI DEVELOPER: KOJIMA PRODUCTIONS PRICE: £29.99 DISTRIBUTOR: OPEN CONTACT: 0208 987 5706
SOLID MARKETING WITH KOJIMA Konami has an extensive marketing campaign planned, backed by none other than series creator Hideo Kojima himself. Print – Kojima will be presenting Peace Walker to key press in advance of reviews. A large print advertising campaign is also planned across gaming publications and mainstream magazines. Online – a steady stream of gameplay footage will run across gaming websites, with additional banners and virals scheduled nearer the game’s release. Retail – Konami promises a huge Peace Walker POS roll-out and instore presence. Events – Kojima will be present at a HMV store signing event in London as well as a Uniqlo signing on June 19th. The clothing store has also produced ten limited edition Peace Walker t-shirts.
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ÂŁ1,750 Sourcebook 2010 is published on July 9th with MCV. It is also included with Develop, Mobile Entertainment and PCR. Sourcebook is a low-cost promotional tool. Sectors covered include Creative & Promotional Services, Distribution & Logistics, International Distribution, Legal Services, Localisation, QA & Testing, Manufacturing Services, Recruitment, Software Development, and Gaming Accessories.
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RETAILBIZ: ACHTUNG PANZER: KHARKOV 1943 WWW.MCVUK.COM
MCV 07/05/10 43
Mamba’s latest PC title offers players a realistic World War II strategy experience at a budget price… by Dominic Sacco
includes up to 250 soldiers and 40 vehicles on screen at once in each of the game’s technical battles. Players are able to select either the USSR or Wehrmacht armies to re-create history and can play across six separate scenarios set during the 1943 Kharkov Defense Operation. The levels themselves are huge and are based on real-life locations tree for tree, boasting fully destructible environments. Achtung Panzer has already received strong acclaim from gamers and press for level design alone.
MAMBA GAMES has established itself as a key player in the budget PC game market with a series of point-and-click adventure titles – now it’s adding to that collection with war strategy simulation Achtung Panzer: Kharkov 1943. As the title suggests, the game is set in 1943 during the historic World War II battle of Kharkov between Germany and Russia. “We have high expectations for Achtung Panzer,” says Lace Mamba Global’s European MD Jason Codd. We have high expectations “It is the most realistic for Achtung Panzer – it’s the tank simulation on the most realistic tank simulation market and with the game on the market. added value of an additional DVD Jason Codd, Mamba Games documentary, it gives There are 87 types of individual units consumers real value for money. to take control of, ranging from infantry “Luckily there are no similar titles in and artillery to battle tanks and aviation the market at the moment, so every tank simulator fan will be looking for something vehicles. This includes more than 40 carefully reconstructed real-life World like Kharcov as it’s so detailed.” War II weapons and tanks. TANKED UP Vehicles have real-time damage Mamba is really placing an emphasis on systems, with their engine, suspension the realism of Achtung Panzer, which and aiming appliances all susceptible to
damage. Even soldiers have different varying levels of morale, fitness and experience, affecting their performance on the battlefield. Achtung Panzer also boasts two key gameplay features – a turn-based strategy mode where troops are deployed and attacks planned, and a real-time tactic feature which shows units moving across the war zone, offering players the ability to quickly change tactics as the conflict progresses. The opposition’s AI is highly flexible and will test gamers depending on their choice of tactical movements and strategies, analysing players’ behaviour to constantly throw new challenges at them.
PANZER PRESS COVERAGE
Initial feedback from players and gaming publications has been warm, complimenting the game’s AI, scope of units and attention to detail. Early reviews of the game have also been positive, with an average review score of 75 per cent along with an average user score of 100 on aggregator website Metacritic.
RELEASED: MAY 14 FORMATS: PC PUBLISHER: LACE MAMBA GLOBAL DEVELOPER: GRAVITEAM PRICE: £19.99 DISTRIBUTOR: LACE MAMBA GLOBAL (NATIONALS), ADVANTAGE (INDIES) CONTACT: GLENN@LM-GLOBAL.NET (NATIONALS), 0121 506 9595 (INDIES)
Codd adds: “The reviews so far have been very positive and therefore the product has been well received. “For a genre we haven’t previously entered, it’s important to see how retail and especially the public take to it.” Mamba Games has established a thorough print advertising campaign to market the game in the UK. This will run across a range of major gaming magazines and specialist websites including wargamer.com. With its depth of detail, engaging gameplay, positive feedback and an attractive price point, Achtung Panzer is set to tickle war gamers’ hearts when it’s released later this month. Achtung Panzer: Kharkov 1943 will be released for PC on May 14th.
RETAILBIZ: PROJECT RUNWAY 44 MCV 07/05/10
Namco Bandai is bringing the popular fashion TV series Project Runway to the Wii games market in the UK…
Project Runway pits players in the role of an aspiring fashion designer who is presented with a series of challenges similar to the show. Users can create their own designs and give models new hairstyles, make-up and accessories to make it through to the next round. Inventive use of the Wii Balance Board means players can become the model by showing off their own creations on the Project Runway catwalk.
by Dominic Sacco
PROJECT RUNWAY on Wii aims to capture the excitement of the catwalk from the successful US TV show of the same name. The game is likely to appeal to casual players and fans of games including Just Dance, We Sing, Dancing on Ice and other much-loved Wii Balance Boardcompatible titles such as Wii Fit. In the TV show, contestants are given a We expect to see the sales fashion theme and must for Project Runway continue compete with each other throughout the year as the to create the best clothes brand increases in popularity. within a time limit. Like X Marlene Fitzsimmons, Namco Bandai Factor, one or more designers are eliminated each week by an expert judging panel, The game will also feature the TV with the winner being the final fashion show’s complete panel of judges – Tim designer standing. Gunn, Nina Garcia and Michael Kors – “The Project Runway TV series has a as well as the top eight contestants from massive following in the UK and season six, including reigning Project continues to increase in popularity,” says Runway winner Irina Shabayeva. Host of Namco Bandai PR and marketing the series and model Heidi Klum also executive Marlene Fitzsimmons. makes an appearance in the game. “The game is sure to appeal to young In addition to the core reality show tween girls, offering them everything competition, the Project Runway video they look for in a video game, from game also boasts an interactive garment fashion design to catwalk modelling.” studio, fashion career mode, hair and
RELEASED: MAY 28 FORMATS: WII PUBLISHER: ATARI DEVELOPER: TORNADO STUDIOS PRICE: £24.99 DISTRIBUTOR: NAMCO BANDAI CONTACT: 0121 506 9585
make-up studios and fashion shoots where the player can take on the role of a high-profile fashion photographer. Fitzsimmons adds: “The Project Runway brand is instantly recognisable and is sure to help the product sell through at retail. “We expect to see the sales for Project Runway continue throughout the year as the brand increases in popularity.” RUNAWAY SUCCESS
The Project Runway TV show first aired in December 2004 on Bravo in the US and has gone on to become a massive success, producing seven seasons and receiving an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Competitive Reality Series. Namco Bandai has teamed up with Claire’s Accessories and Very.co.uk to promote the game, with an online campaign aiming to reach fans. It will also promote the title in-store. “We aim to ensure the product has high visibility in store to capitalise on impulse purchase through the brand,” says Fitzsimmons. Project Runway will be released for Wii on May 28th.
ne rd u Bi 7 J y rl til Ea un s te Ra
13 -15 JULY 2010
be inspired Excellent Speakers. Great Networking. Top Location. Develop in Brighton - the main event for European developers - is back with a vengeance! In celebration of our fifth year we can promise you a stellar line up of speakers, a choice of over 80 high quality sessions and fantastic networking opportunities with more than 1,200 international developers.
Just announced! Opening Keynote
Greg Zeschuk Group Creative Officer, BioWare Studio Group, Electronic Arts Vice President, and Co-founder of BioWare
Ray Muzyka Group General Manager, BioWare Group and Senior Vice President, Electronic Arts, and Co-founder and CEO, BioWare KEYNOTE
Other sessions include:
Come and hear from:
• Opening up player metrics to the community in Just Cause 2 Jim Blackhurst & Mike Oldman, Square Enix • The Lowdown on Downloadable Content Chris Bruce, SingStar, SCEE • Managing Risk from a Developer's Perspective John Dennis, Team 17 • Productivity: Make Life Easier for Your Team Jason Avent, Disney Black Rock Studio • How to Make the Games Media Work for You Johnny Minkley, Eurogamer • 3DTV: The next dimension in game graphics Mick Hocking, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe • All the right moves: grasping the possibilities of motion controllers Andrew Oliver, Blitz Games Studios
Louis Castle, Instant Action • David Helgason, Unity Technologies • Mick Hocking, SCEE • Peter Molyneux, Lionhead Studios • Peter Hall, Crytek • Ben Minto, EA DICE • Ben Board, Microsoft • Alice Taylor, Channel 4 • Garry Taylor, SCEE • Alan Yu, ngmoco • Chris Pruitt, google • Dave Anderson, BBC • Richard Bates, SCEE • Jasper Koning, Ronimo Games • Jerome Hagen, Microsoft • Seb Canniff, SCEE
Develop is a great platform to share our experiences in self-publishing. Having a conference like Develop right on our doorstep provides a wonderful opportunity to learn, share and meet up with friends in a relaxed atmosphere. Andrew Eades, Relentless Software
Yes, it can help you make better games whether or not your console can also make calls. Yes, it's got top-tier talking talent. But at Develop they wear sun-cream. Who needs tapas at the Thirsty Bear when you can have a fish supper on Brighton Beach? Ben Board, Microsoft
Following its successful launch last year, Evolve on Tuesday 13 July kickstarts the conference with three tracks dedicated to the cutting edge of game development - new technologies, new markets and new platforms.
Expo Running alongside the Conference is the Develop Expo, which is FREE for visitors to attend and brings together some of Europe's most innovative companies from every sector of games development.
The Main Event for European Developers
www.developconference.com International Media Sponsor
gamesindustry.biz Member Discounts
RETAILBIZ: NEW RELEASES 46 MCV 07/05/10
Check out MCVUK.COM/RELEASE-DATES for more
Rockstar Dead set for success Red Dead Redemption aims its sights on summer blockbuster status as THQ’s UFC 2010 readies its belt for chart dominance. Other key games just around the corner include big racing titles Split/Second: Velocity and Blur… TITLE
PC / PS3 / XBOX 360
0121 625 3388
PS3 PC XBOX 360 PC PC DS / Wii PSP PS3 / XBOX 360
Action/Adventure Simulation Adventure Simulation Simulation Mini-Games Fighting Sports
South Peak Mamba Games Microsoft Excalibur Publishing First Class Simulations South Peak Namco Bandai EA
0121 625 3388 01273 202220 01279 822800 01869 338833 01869 338833 0121 625 3388 0121 506 9585 0121 625 3388
Centresoft Lace Gem Open Open Centresoft Advantage Centresoft
Wii PC DS DS DS PC XBOX 360 PSP / DS / Wii / PS3 / XBOX 360 PS3 / XBOX 360 DS PS3 / XBOX 360
Fighting Simulation Simulation Adventure Music Strategy Action/Adventure Action/Adventure Action/Adventure Action/Adventure Racing
THQ Excalibur Publishing Ghostlight South Peak Nintendo Mamba Games 505 Games Ubisoft Rockstar Disney Interactive Disney Interactive
0121 506 9585 01869 338833 01376 555 333 0121 625 3388 01753 483700 01273 202220 0121 506 9585 01279 822800 01279 822 800 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388
Advantage Open Open Centresoft Open Lace Advantage Gem Gem Centresoft Centresoft
PC / PS3 / XBOX 360 Wii XBOX 360 / PS3 PC / PS3 / XBOX 360 PS3 / XBOX 360 PC Wii Wii Wii PC / PS3 / XBOX 360 Wii PC / XBOX 360 XBOX 360 / PS3 / PSP
Action Music Sports Racing Action Simulation Mini-games Action Casual Sports Action FPS Fighting
Sega Foreign Media Games 505 Games Activision Blizzard Namco Bandai Just Flight O Games Rising Star Games Atari Ubisoft Tecmo Koei City Interactive THQ
0121 625 3388 0121 506 9585 0121 506 9585 0121 625 3388 0121 506 9585 0845 234 4242 0121 625 3388 0845 234 4242 0121 506 9585 01279 822800 01462 476 130 01279 822800 0121 506 9585
Centresoft Advantage Advantage Centresoft Advantage Mastertronic Centresoft Mastertronic Advantage Gem Open Gem Advantage
PC XBOX 360 / PS3 PC DS
Adventure Adventure Adventure Casual
Mamba Games 505 Games Ubisoft Nintendo
01273 202220 0121 506 9585 01279 822800 01753 483700
Lace Advantage Gem Open
XBOX 360 / PS3 / Wii
0121 625 3388
MAY 11th Lost Planet 2
MAY 14th 3D Dot Game Heroes Achtung Panzer: Kharkov 1943 Collectors Edition Alan Wake Demolition Simulator Hurricane V Stuka Miniclips' Sushi Go Round Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Heroes 3 Skate 3
MAY 21st All Star Karate Bus Simulator 2 Dancing on Ice Famous Jam with the Band Making History 2: War of the World MorphX Prince Of Persia: The Forgotten Sands Red Dead Redemption Sonny With A Chance Split/Second: Velocity
MAY 28th Alpha Protocol Armin van Buuren - In The Mix Backbreaker Blur Clash Of The Titans Class 20 Collection Great Party Games No More Heroes 2 Project Runway Pure Football Samurai Warriors 3 Sniper UFC Undisputed 2010
JUNE 4th I'm Not Alone Naughty Bear Prince Of Persia: The Forgotten Sands Rooms: The Main Building
JUNE 8th Green Day: Rock Band
MUSTSTOCK .................RED DEAD REDEMPTION Released: May 21st Format: PS3, Xbox 360 Publisher: Rockstar Games Distributor: Gem Contact: 01279 822 800
Rockstar is keen to show that there’s more to the publisherdeveloper than Grand Theft Auto with its first and biggest blockbuster of the year, Red Dead Redemption. It has invested in its biggest ever pre-launch TV spend for the Wild West game.
THE FIRST REAL LIVING-ROOM DJ EXPERIENCE!
MUSTSTOCK .................UFC UNDISPUTED 2010 Released: May 28th Format: PS3, Xbox 360, PSP Publisher: THQ Distributor: Advantage Contact: 0121 506 9585
UFC 2009 was a suprise hit at retail last year selling 3.5m copies, and THQ expects UFC 2010 to surpass its success. UFC has become an increasingly popular sport in the UK and the title should prove popular with fighting game fans.
T: 01564 200948
GET YOUR GAME
JUNE 23RD 2010 SEES THE TRIUMPHANT RETURN OF THE MCV & XBOX 360 GAMES 5S! Reserve your place now for the legendary tournament â€“ includes a screening of the England vs Slovenia final group match, along with a BBQ & beers! To confirm your place, please send an email to: email@example.com
We look forward to hearing from you soon!
RETAILBIZ: HIGH STREET 48 MCV 07/05/10
POLL WILL BEST BUY ESTABLISH ITSELF AS A KEY GAMES RETAILER?
REVIEW SCORES MCV provides the most important average review scores of the last few days – all sourced from Metacritic...
45% No 2010 FIFA World Cup 360, EA
80% 91% 70% 64% 3D Dot Game Heroes,
Super Street Fighter IV,
Nier, 360, Square Enix
PS3, Namco Bandai
INDIE CHARTS - ALL FORMATS 2
SPLINTER CELL: CONVICTION
POKÉMON SOULSILVER DS
MONSTER HUNTER TRI WII
JUST DANCE WII
MONSTER HUNTER TRI + CLASSIC CONTROLLER WII
DEVELOPER: UBISOFT MONTREAL PUBLISHER: UBISOFT
GTA: EPISODES FROM LIBERTY CITY PS3 GOD OF WAR III PS3
POKÉMON HEARTGOLD DS
BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2 360
JUST CAUSE 2 360
Electronics retailer Best Buy opened its first store in the UK this month in Thurrock, Essex and says it can establish itself as a serious player in the games marketplace. MCV asked readers whether it can or not, and just over half (55 per cent) responded positively, with 45 per cent believing it won’t become a key player.
Best Buy is a success in the US and recently posted a 24.5 per cent rise in gross profit of $12.2bn for its fiscal year ending in February. The retailer promises its own range of gaming peripherals, specialist staff and pre-owned stock. Take part in MCV’s next poll at www.mcvuk.com
Dead to Rights: Retribution
*Metacritic scores correct at the time of going to press
MARGIN MAKER The Nyko Xbox 360 Charge Base allows gamers to slot in and recharge up to two wireless controllers at once. Two rechargeable batteries supply up to 25 hours of continuous play time and the charge kit comes packaged with an AC adaptor, which promises a faster charge than USB. An LED light indicates when the controllers are fully charged to save energy. Its design also matches the décor of the black Xbox 360 and official controllers. The Nyko Xbox 360 Charge Base has an RRP of £27.99 and is available to order now. Interactive Ideas: 0208 805 1000
DEAL OF THE WEEK
SONY NINTENDO EA SQUARE ENIX
Charts compiled by Game Guide/Complete EPOS Solutions. For more information about Complete EPOS Solutions call 01543 370002. For more information about the Game Guide call 01606 836347.
Toys R Us is offering players a 120GB PS3 Slim with Mirror’s Edge and Need For Speed Undercover for £249.99. This gives buyers a saving of around £50 – the premium they’d pay if each product was bought separately.
RETAILBIZ: HIGH STREET WWW.MCVUK.COM
MCV 07/05/10 49 Sponsored by
PRICE CHECK [PRE ORDERS] Monster Hunter Tri Wii, Capcom
Nier 360, Square Enix
Dead to Rights: Retribution PS3, Namco Bandai
Samurai Shodown Sen 360, Rising Star
GTA: Liberty City PS3, Rockstar
TOP 10 DEMON’S SOULS BLACK PHANTOM
IN STORE: MANCHESTER
PS3, NAMCO BANDAI
2. 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP
3. 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP
4. LOST PLANET 2 + T-SHIRT
PS3 ..........................................................................EA 360 ..........................................................................EA 360 ..................................................................CAPCOM
5. LOST PLANET 2 + T-SHIRT
6. RED DEAD REDEMPTION
7. RED DEAD REDEMPTION
8. 3D DOT GAME HEROES
9. UFC UNDISPUTED 2010 WITH 1GB USB
10. GOD OF WAR: COLLECTION
PS3 ......................................................................SONY Week ending April 30th Source: SHOPTO.COM
FROM THE FRONTLINE On the frontline this week is Paul Saunby from Grainger Games in Doncaster…
What are the biggest challenges facing your store? Getting the company name known in this part of the country. We’ve already had a few customers saying they’ve been in a Grainger Games store in the North East and wished there was one in South Yorkshire. That really shows the impact of the brand.
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP PS3, EA 2. 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP
3. RED DEAD REDEMPTION What are your hopes for 2010? That Project Natal and PlayStation Move live up to the hype. These could be the key to getting everyone into gaming, and providing a re-launch for this generation of consoles. Which Q1 title are you most looking forward to? Red Dead Redemption. Looking at the previews, Rockstar has put some real depth into this one. The storylines, atmosphere and multiplayer look like it could become one of the best games of the year.
4. RED DEAD REDEMPTION
“I hope Natal and Move live up to the hype. They could be key to getting everyone into gaming, and provide a current gen re-launch”
5. HALO: REACH LEGENDARY EDITION
6. SUPER STREET FIGHTER IV
7. SUPER STREET FIGHTER IV
How much of a threat do supermarkets pose to your store? Supermarkets are entitled to sell what they want, but we’re seeing more customers coming back to specialists because they get better advice and service from specialist staff.
What is the one thing you would change about games retail? To educate certain areas of the media that our industry is not the root of all evil. We provide entertainment for all ages and do so responsibly. A lot of parents and politicians need to open their eyes.
8. GOD OF WAR: COLLECTION
9. THE SIMS 3: AMBITIONS
10. 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP
WII............................................................................EA Week ending April 30th Source: AMAZON.CO.UK
RETAILBIZ: RETAIL CHARTS 50 MCV 07/05/10
Check out RETAILBIZ at WWW.MCVUK.COM
OFFICIALUKCHARTS NINTENDO DS THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
 [FULL PRICE]
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
POKÉMON SOULSILVER NINTENDO NEW SUPER MARIO BROS NINTENDO PROFESSOR LAYTON & PANDORA’S BOX NINTENDO JEWEL QUEST: EMERALD TEAR GSP/AVANQUEST PEPPA PIG: FUN AND GAMES P2 GAMES WARIOWARE D.I.Y NINTENDO MARIO KART DS NINTENDO MARIO & LUIGI: BOWSER’S INSIDE STORY NINTENDO MARIO & SONIC: WINTER OLYMPICS SEGA
1 3 5 9 4 NEW
6 7 10
WII THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
[ENTERTAINMENT - ALL PRICES]
DEVELOPER: NINTENDO PUBLISHER: NINTENDO
FORMAT: 360, PS3, Wii, PSP
DEVELOPER: EA CANADA PUBLISHER: EA
SUPER STREET FIGHTER IV 360, PS3
JUST DANCE Wii
SPLINTER CELL: CONVICTION 360, PC
GTA: EPISODES FROM LIBERTY CITY PS3, PC, 360 ROCKSTAR
WII FIT PLUS Wii
WII SPORTS RESORT Wii
BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2 360, PS3, PC
COD: MODERN WARFARE 2 360, PS3, PC, DS
[FULL PRICE] TITLE
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA
EA ACTIVISION BLIZZARD
GOD OF WAR COLLECTION PS3
MONSTER HUNTER TRI
JUST CAUSE 2 PS3, 360, PC
DEVELOPER: CAPCOM PUBLISHER: CAPCOM
MONSTER HUNTER TRI Wii
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
NEW SUPER MARIO BROS WII NINTENDO MARIO KART WII NINTENDO MARIO & SONIC: WINTER OLYMPICS SEGA 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA EA JAMES CAMERON’S AVATAR UBISOFT SONIC & SEGA ALL-STARS RACING SEGA F1 2009 CODEMASTERS RED STEEL 2 UBISOFT HASBRO FAMILY GAME NIGHT: VOL 2 EA
JAMES CAMERON’S AVATAR 360, PS3, Wii, DS, PSP, PC
POKÉMON HEARTGOLD DS
FINAL FANTASY XIII 360, PS3
FIFA 10 360, PS3, Wii, PS2, DS, PC, PSP
POKÉMON SOULSILVER DS
GOD OF WAR III PS3
NEW SUPER MARIO BROS WII Wii
IRON MAN 2 360, PS3, Wii, DS, PSP
2 3 4 NEW
10 5 6 7 9
WII THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
WII FIT PLUS WII SPORTS RESORT WII PLAY EA SPORTS ACTIVE RABBIDS GO HOME MONOPOLY CARNIVAL: FUNFAIR GAMES
CARS: RACE-0-RAMA MY FITNESS COACH: GET IN SHAPE
2 3 4 5
THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
SQUARE ENIX CAPCOM UBISOFT
EA NINTENDO SONY NINTENDO SEGA
SPLINTER CELL: CONVICTION
FOOTBALL MANAGER 2010
THE SIMS 3
NAPOLEON: TOTAL WAR
DEVELOPER: UBISOFT (FRANCE) PUBLISHER: UBISOFT
DEVELOPER: UBISOFT MONTREAL PUBLISHER: UBISOFT SEGA EA SEGA
BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2
C&C4: TIBERIAN TWILIGHT
THE SIMS 3: WORLD ADVENTURES
GTA: EPISODES FROM LIBERTY CITY
WOW: LICH KING
DAWN OF WAR II: CHAOS RISING
EA ROCKSTAR ACTIVISION BLIZZARD THQ
RETAILBIZ: RETAIL CHARTS WWW.MCVUK.COM
MCV 07/05/10 51
THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
Highest New Entry
ALIENS VS PREDATOR 360, PS3, PC
SONIC & SEGA ALL-STARS RACING PS3, 360 Wii, DS
ASSASSIN’S CREED II 360, PS3, PC
NEW SUPER MARIO BROS DS
MARIO & SONIC: WINTER OLYMPICS Wii, DS
HALO 3: ODST 360
FORZA MOTORSPORT 3 360
MIRROR’S EDGE 360, PS3, PC
LEGO BATMAN PC, DS, PS3, 360, Wii, PSP
METRO 2033 PC, 360
MARIO KART WII Wii
MEGA DRIVE ULTIMATE COLLECTION PS3, 360
BAND HERO 360, PS3, Wii, PS2, DS
YAKUZA 3 PS3
FOOTBALL MANAGER 2010 PC
WARNER BROS THQ NINTENDO SEGA
PROFESSOR LAYTON: PANDORA’S BOX DS
DEAD TO RIGHTS: RETRIBUTION 360, PS3
JEWEL QUEST: EMERALD TEAR DS
HEAVY RAIN PS3
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
4 8 2 6 3 11 7 12 5
SIMS 3: DESIGN & HIGH-TECH STUFF DEVELOPER: THE SIMS STUDIO PUBLISHER: EA
WOW: BATTLE CHEST
FOCUS ACTIVISION BLIZZARD
ROME: TOTAL WAR
DRAGON AGE: ORIGINS JEWEL QUEST MYSTERIES: HEART MURDER, SHE WROTE THE DRACULA FILES ASSASSIN’S CREED
SUPER STREET FIGHTER IV GTA: EPISODES FROM LIBERTY CITY GOD OF WAR III BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2 JUST CAUSE 2 FINAL FANTASY XIII
8 9 10
DEVELOPER: EA CANADA PUBLISHER: EA
YAKUZA 3 COD: MODERN WARFARE 2 HEAVY RAIN
CAPCOM ROCKSTAR SONY EA SQUARE ENIX SQUARE ENIX SEGA ACTIVISION BLIZZARD SONY
[FULL PRICE] TITLE
EA GSP/AVANQUEST FOCUS GSP/.AVANQUEST FOCUS
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
GRAN TURISMO JAMES CAMERON’S AVATAR: THE GAME LITTLEBIGPLANET FIFA 10 ASSASSIN’S CREED: BLOODLINES FOOTBALL MANAGER 2010 BEN 10: ALIEN FORCE: VILGAX ATTACKS DISSIDIA: FINAL FANTASY NEED FOR SPEED: SHIFT
3 9 1 2 5 6 4 7 8
DEVELOPER: EA CANADA PUBLISHER: EA
MYSTERY CASE FILES: DIRE GROVE
2 3 4 5 6 7
THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA
GRAND THEFT AUTO IV 360, PS3, PC
THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
1 1 4 2 3 8
WEEK ENDING 01/05/10
Just Dance. Conviction saw a 37 per cent drop in sales despite the release of the PC version. Capcom had the second highest new entry with Super Street Fighter IV at No.2. Elsewhere, God Of War Collection is the only other title to debut in the Top 10, while Iron Man 2 enters the charts at No.20. James.Batchelor@intentmedia.co.uk
fourth place, just behind fellow Ubisoft success
THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
SONY UBISOFT SONY EA UBISOFT SEGA D3P SQUARE ENIX EA
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
SPLINTER CELL: CONVICTION SUPER STREET FIGHTER IV COD: MODERN WARFARE 2 BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2 JUST CAUSE 2 FORZA MOTORSPORT 3 HALO 3: ODST FINAL FANTASY XIII METRO 2033
3 2 4 5 7 8 10
(c) ELSPA, Compiled by ChartTrack
ELECTRONIC ARTS deposes Ubisoft with 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa debuting at No.1. It only achieved 14 per cent of FIFA 10’s day one sales, but is sure to sell well as the World Cup heats up this summer. The PS3 and 360 versions took the lion’s share of sales, accounting for 48 per cent and 47 per cent respectively. Ubisoft’s four-week run at No.1 is ended as Splinter Cell: Conviction is knocked down to
DEVELOPER: EA CANADA PUBLISHER: EA UBISOFT CAPCOM ACTIVISION BLIZZARD EA SQUARE ENIX MICROSOFT MICROSOFT SQUARE ENIX THQ
INTERNATIONAL DISTRIBUTION 52 MCV 07/05/10
International Distribution Guide AUSTRALIA
All Interactive.................Helensvale Town Centre
Hitzona.............................................................Moscow Noviy Disk .......................................................Moscow
Soft Club..........................................................Moscow Vellod...................................................................Mitishi
GATEWAY DISTRIBUTION APS
Gateway Distribution ApS +44 1279 408 665 (UK)
JOWOOD ENTERTAINMENT AG Heiligenstädterstrasse 201-203/19 1190 Wien, Austria Tel: +43 (0)1 37909 0 Fax: +43 (0)1 37909 1064 Web: www.jowood.com
+45 7026 0870 (DK) firstname.lastname@example.org
11000 Belgrade, Serbia
Tel:+381(0)11 309 95 95 Fax:+381(0)11 309 95 96
FINLAND Koch Media GmbH...............................Rottenmann Play Art Multimedia Handels GmbH....Rankweil
Cidiverte Spa ...............................................Gallarate
Coop Italia..........................................Sesto F.NO (FI)
Nu Metro Interactive ......................Johannesburg
45 rue Delizy,
Digital Bros spa................................................Milano
ZI Noville les Bois, Rue de la Tour,
93692 PANTIN Cedex, France
Leader Spa.................................Gazzada Schianno
2b 5380 FERNELMONT, Belgium
Email purchase: email@example.com
Phone: 0032 81 83 02 07
Email export sales: firstname.lastname@example.org
Promovideo SRL ...........................................Senago
Fax: 0032 81 83 02 09
CLD DISTRIBUTION S.A.
EMC GROUPE CASINO..........Croissy Beaubourg
Distribuciones Videográficas Digitales ....MADRID
Lamee Software S.L. .....................................Madrid DistribucionesVideográficas Digitales ....Madrid
Distribuye Palmera................................Las Palmas
Wholesaler Gaming products
Gameworld BV............................Capelle A/D Ijssel
JC Distribuciones .............................................Getxo
Official Benelux distributor for
Shine Star, S.A...........................................Barcelona
439 avenue de la Gare
Rigu Sound B.V................2153 GB Nieuw Vennep
84470 Chateauneuf de Gadagne Email : email@example.com Horelec S.A............................................Bruxelles
Phone : 0033 432 751 165 Fax : 0033 432 751 160
SWEDEN Bergsala AB............................................Kungsbacka
NORWAY Pan Vision Norway.....................................Trollasen MPX.no .......................................................Sandefjord
Groß Electronic .......................................Rohrnbach
Otto Group ...................................................Hamburg
PO Box 5083
Playcom Software Vertriebs .......................Erfurt
Pan Vision Norway..............................................Oslo
S-650 05 Karlstad, Sweden
Cornusbaan 1, 2908 KB Capelle A/D IJssel
Vitrex Multimedia Großhandel.....................Erfurt
Tel: +31 10 298 3838 Web: firstname.lastname@example.org
POLAND CD Projekt Sp. z o.o......................................Warsaw
GAME OUTLET EUROPE AB
Phone: +46 54 854750 Fax: +46 54 854759 E-mail: email@example.com Website: www.gameoutlet.se
SIBA AB ...................................................Gothenburg
HUNGARY Antec .............................................................Budapest
GOODTONES GREAT GAMES LTD
1 Alkaiou Street / Office 1 /
Engomi / Nicosia 2404 / Cyprus
TECHLAND Sp. z o.o. ul. Jana Szczyrki 12, 54-426 Wroclaw, Poland E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
ABC Software GmbH.......................................Buchs
Web: www.techland.pl Phone: +48 71 354 46 10 Fax: +48 71 354 46 10
TURKEY ARAL Import..................................................Istanbul
tel. +357 22 666612 www.greatgames.com.cy
ecofilmes...............................Sao Joao Da Madeira
TO ADVERTISE IN THE INTERNATIONAL DISTRIBUTION GUIDE PLEASE CONTACT ROB.BAKER@INTENTMEDIA.CO.UK
EDITORIAL PLANNER WWW.MCVUK.COM
The International Distribution Guide is dedicated to promoting companies outside of the UK. If you are looking for new customers overseas, then look no further...
MCV 07/05/10 53
UPCOMING FEATURES A glimpse at some of the special features coming up in MCV, the only trade publication that covers all sectors of the video games market... FRIDAY MAY 14th
FRIDAY JUNE 11th
TOP 20 INDIES
E3 2010 SPECIAL
Independent retail remains a thriving sector in the UK, with chains such as Grainger Games continuing to grow. MCV gives a run-down of the 20 best independent games retailers in the UK.
The biggest event in the games industry’s calendar returns and, as the offical International Media Partner for the event, MCV brings you a complete guide to this year’s E3 Expo. We look at how the organisers have improved the 2010 event over its predecessors, and offer a roundup of what to expect, including: A breakdown of the venue, including stand locations for all of the major publisher and format holders, and a schedule of key presentations. Interviews with major execs from some of the industry’s leading publishers. An international guide detailing the leading services companies in both established and emerging territories.
BASCO, INC. VIDEO GAMES DISTRIBUTOR Tel: 1-917-627-3000 Fax: 1-718-228-4401 Email: email@example.com Web: www.bascodistribution.com
U.S. GAMES DISTRIBUTION, INC. 16700 Schoenborn St. #2 North Hills, CA. 91343 Tel: +1 818 920 9393 firstname.lastname@example.org www.usgamesdist.com
UAE ALESAYI UNITED COMPANY Video Games Distributor in the Middle East P.O BOX 16999 Jebel Ali Free Zone Dubai U.A.E. Tel: 00971 4 883 5960 Fax: 00971 4 883 5175 E-Mail: email@example.com
CHINA TERRITORY REPORT One of the biggest markets in the Far East, China is also one that bears the most differences when compared to Western territories. We explore the challenges publishers face in the region with an in-depth look at China’s growing games market and the major trends sweeping the region such as the continuing popularity of online gaming.
U.A.E. Website: www.alesayi.ae Group Website: www.alesayi.com
FRIDAY MAY 21st
AFRICA TERRITORY REPORT
FRIDAY JUNE 18th
PLUTO GAMES PO Box 10705, Office 103-104 Emirates Islamic Bank Building, Dubai, UAE www.pluto-games.com Tel: +971 4261 8111 Fax: +971 4261 8112
Modern Pluto Trading LLC...............Saudi Arabia NXT Global LLC .................................................Dubai Pluto Derinton Games LLC............................Egypt Red Entertainment Distribution ..................Dubai
Africa may seem an unlikely territory for gaming, with civilisation spread thinly around this gargantuan continent and largely found on the northern and southern coasts. MCV details the major players and retailers in this region, as well as the unique processes by which games are published and released in Africa.
MCV takes an in-depth look at the biggest issues facing the always-important distribution sector. We speak to the major players – from pick ‘n’ pack specialists to multifaceted sales and marketing behemoths – about the future of the supply chain and how they will be tackling the challenges ahead for the distribution side of the games trade.
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GAMING ACCESSORIES Pinpoint. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01606 558428 GAMES CONSOLE REPAIR Total Console Repair Ltd . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 087 19 18 17 21 LOCALISATION Partnertrans . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01273 229030 Testronic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01753 653 722 Universally Speaking. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01480 210621 WWE DSi Crystal Case
RETAIL SERVICES Complete Epos Solutions Ltd. . . . . . . . . . . . 01543 370002
DS Lite / DSi / DSi XL Stylus Pack
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or email: email@example.com
STORE FITTINGS AMA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 0113 2311030 UK Shopfitters. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 0844 257 8800
Road One, Winsford, Cheshire CW7 3QG www.pinpointce.co.uk Part of the Pinpoint Group PINPOINT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01606 558428 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . www.pinpointce.co.uk
Distributors of DVDs, Blu-Ray, Music CDs and Video Games
www.discstribution.com Over 100,000 Different Items to Order Online
THE NEW FORCE IN ENTERTAINMENT
DISCSTRIBUTION +44 (0) 845 430 8735 Call Kevin, Ashley, Richie or Pete Accepted Payments - Paypal - Google Checkout - Credit Cards - Bank Tranfers and 30 Day Credit Accounts
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GLS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01708 725742. . . . . . . . . firstname.lastname@example.org
CURVEBALL LEISURE . . . . . . 01792 652526 . . . . email@example.com
GEM. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01279 822800 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . www.gem.co.uk
MERONCOURT . . . . . . . . . . +44 (0) 1462 680060 . . . http://trade.meroncourt.co.uk
CREATIVE DISTRIBUTION. . . . 0208 6643456 . . . . www.creativedistribution.co.uk
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Develop is the only dedicated publication for the UK and European games development community. It reaches over 8,000 request-only subscribers every month. STUDIOS Epic Games..........................................................+1 919 870 1516 FaceFX...................................................................+1.919.727.9624 Stainless Games .............................firstname.lastname@example.org TOOLS Blitz Games Studios.............................+44 (0) 1926 880 000 bluegfx.....................................................+44 (0) 1483 467 200 Dolby.........................................................+44 (0) 1793 842 922 Havok .................................................................+1 415 543 4620 SERVICES Amiqus ..............................................................www.amiqus.com Brand Protect ..........................................+44 (0) 1869 346160 Outso Ltd.............................................................www.outso.com Partnertrans.............................................+44 (0) 1273 229030 Testronic Labs.........................................+44 (0) 1753 653 722 Universally Speaking..............................+44 (0) 1480 210 621 COURSES Futureworks .............................................. +44 (0)161 237 7570 University of Hull ...................................+44 (0) 1482 465 951 To be included in the Develop Directory (which appears every month in Develop and every week in MCV) contact email@example.com. All subscription requests should go to firstname.lastname@example.org GAMES CONSOLE REPAIR
TOTAL CONSOLE REPAIR . . . . . . . 08719 181721 . . . . . www.totalconsolerepair.co.uk
LOGIC 3 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01923 471000 . . . . . . . . . . . email@example.com
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Now is a great time to expand your digital business Distributors of CDkey, Epin and downloadable products.
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TripleACodes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . firstname.lastname@example.org DISTRIBUTION
IDEAL SOFTWARE . . . . . . . +44 (0) 1767 689720 . . . . . . . . . . www.idealsoftware.net DISTRIBUTION
UNIVERSAL GAMES DISTRIBUTION (UK) LTD . 0208 787 7030 . www.unigames.co.uk
GREEN MAN GAMING. . . . . . . 020 7193 6910 . . . . . . . . email@example.com
PARTNERTRANS . . . . . . . . . . . 01273 229030 . . . . . . . . . . . . . www.partnertrans.com
AMA DISPLAYS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 0113 2311030 . . . . . . . . . . . www.ama-displays.co.uk
TESTRONIC LABORATORIES . . . +44 (0) 1753 653 722. . . . www.testroniclabs.com
USD LIMITED . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01933 227220. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . www.usdlimited.com
Design/Branding/ Advertising/ Packaging/Web
01480 302 352 firstname.lastname@example.org www.finkcreative.com UNIVERSALLY SPEAKING . . . . . . . 01480 210621 . . . . . . . . . . . www.usspeaking.com
FINK . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01480 302352 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . www.finkcreative.com
DIARY DATES From the MCV Awards to our Games Developer Conference, here are all the essential industry dates to put in your diary…
MAY MONETISING MOBILE Wednesday, May 26th BAFTA, London Jodie.Holdway@intentmedia.co.uk MCM LONDON EXPO Saturday, May 29th – Sunday, May 30th ExCeL, London www.mcmexpo.net
JUNE E3 2010 Tuesday, June 15th – Thursday, June 17th Los Angeles Convention Centre www.e3expo.com
JULY DEVELOP CONFERENCE 2010 Tuesday, July 13th Thursday, July 15th Brighton, UK www.develop-conference.com DEVELOP INDUSTRY EXCELLENCE AWARDS 2010 Wednesday, July 14th Brighton, UK www.develop-online.net CASUAL CONNECT SEATTLE Tuesday, July 20th – Thursday, July 22nd Benaroya Hall, Seattle, US seattle.casualconnect.org
AUGUST GAMESCOM Wednesday, August 18th Sunday, August 22nd Cologne, Germany www.gamescom-cologne.com EDINBURGH INTERACTIVE FESTIVAL 2010 Wednesday, August 25th – Thursday, August 26th Edinburgh, Scotland www.edinburghinteractivefestival.com
SEPTEMBER MCV/XBOX 360 QUIZ Thursday, September 23rd Sway Bar, London Orlaith.Kennedy@intentmedia.co.uk
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DEVELOP INDUSTRY EXCELLENCE AWARDS 2010 Wednesday, July 14th Brighton, UK www.develop-online.net Lobbying has already opened for the Develop Industry Excellence Awards. Now in its eighth year, the event takes place in Brighton at the Hilton Metropole, on July 14th. Anyone in the industry can nominate a studio for the awards. Simply send a 300 word pitch to developawards@ intentmedia.co.uk. Prices have also been reduced to make the event more accessible. Contact Kathryn.Humphrey@intent media.co.uk to book tables and Katie.Rawlings@intent media.co.uk to order tickets.
MCV/XBOX 360 QUIZ Thursday, September 23rd Sway Bar, London Orlaith.Kennedy@ intentmedia.co.uk The MCV/Xbox 360 Quiz gives retailers, suppliers and the media the chance to show off their general knowledge skills in an appropriate arena for our industry – the local bar. There will be thousands of pounds’ worth of prizes up for grabs to the best performers on the night, as well as loads of top-notch booze and food. The quiz is free to enter for retailers and the media, and serves as a great networking opportunity.
nk s li ds… ’ p p De Awar y n n ohn iratio J , p ld s ffie ish In e h S rit ing the B d a v s in s from k e l Da cture s ’ e pi r the and k n e we ivisio s i t Th Ac h wit
It’s almost rude not to know someone who once worked there. This week, we start with...
Johnny Depp stars in the Pirates of the Caribbean films, which were directed by...
2 Gore Verbinski, who once planned to direct a film of BioShock, published by Take-Two, which also publishes the Civilization series, created by...
Sid Meier, who is the cofounder of Microprose, which released Red October Rising, based on the work of...
Tom Clancey, whose novels are now turned into games by Ubisoft, which is where...
ATTACK OF THE DALEKS It wasn’t the Liberal Democrats, Labour or the Conservatives on the campaign trail in Sheffield two weeks ago – it was the Daleks from Doctor Who. Freelance journo Will Porter (above) was one of the members of the gaming press confronted by Daleks to celebrate the upcoming launch of the episodic Doctor Who video game. Premier PR teamed up with the BBC to unleash a horde of Daleks into the streets of Sheffield ahead of the game’s June 5th release. Players will be able to download all four PC Doctor Who games for free.
Murray Pannel now works, having previously been part of the Xbox 360 team alongside...
Michelle Marchand, who, once upon a time, plied her marketing trade at... ACTIVISION.
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Online Editor: Ben Parfitt Ben.Parfitt@intentmedia.co.uk Contributors: Will Freeman, Rob Crossley, Stuart Richardson, Colin Campbell Advertising Manager: Lesley Blumson Lesley.Blumson@intentmedia.co.uk Advertising Executive: Rob Baker Rob.Baker@intentmedia.co.uk Art Director: Stuart Moody Stuart.Moody@intentmedia.co.uk
Design: Adam Butler Adam.Butler@intentmedia.co.uk Production Manager: Suzanne Powles Suzanne.Powles@intentmedia.co.uk Business Development: Dave Roberts Dave.Roberts@intentmedia.co.uk Contributing Editor: Samantha Loveday Samantha.Loveday@intentmedia.co.uk Circulation & Marketing: Hannah Short Hannah.Short@intentmedia.co.uk
FAX: 01992 535648
Please address all enquiries to: MCV, Intent Media, Saxon House, 6a St. Andrew Street, Hertford SG14 1JA. Managing Director/Publisher: Stuart Dinsey Stuart.Dinsey@intentmedia.co.uk Telephone: 01992 535688
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SAXON HOUSE, 6A ST. ANDREW STREET, HERTFORD, HERTFORDSHIRE, ENGLAND SG14 1JA Intent Media specialises in trade-dedicated print and digital publishing for entertainment and leisure markets. As well as MCV, Intent publishes Develop, PCR, ToyNews, Mobile Entertainment, MI Pro, Audio Pro International and BikeBiz. It also has two online-only brands: CasualGaming.biz, dedicated to the growing mass market video game sector, and Licensing.biz, for everyone in the global licensing industry. It also runs a number of events including the MCV Industry Excellence Awards, the London Games Conference and the Games Media Awards.
MCV is a member of the Audit Bureau of Circulation and the Periodical Publishers Association. Membership of the ABC and PPA provides our advertising partners with confidence in our circulation statements. For the 12 months ending December 2009, MCV had an average weekly net circulation of 8,045. MCV’s circulation is 100 per cent named and zero per cent duplicated.
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ISSN: 1469-4832 Copyright 2008
MCV has an exclusive media partnership with Famitsu - Japan’s leading video games analyst and news source
MCV 07/05/10 61
FROM THE ARCHIVE March 22nd, 1993 NEWS Future’s Future Entertainment Show and Hewland’s GamesMaster Live join forces to create the Future GamesMaster Live Entertainment Show (possibly not real name), which will take place at Olympia between November 11th to 14th and attract around 75,000 visitors (possibly not real numbers)... Sega signs a whizzy sponsorship deal with the Williams Formula One team and its drivers, Alain Prost and Damon Hill... In slightly less glamorous news, WH Smith appoints Leisuresoft as its exclusive supplier... Philips signs Gremlin’s Litil Divil exclusively for its CD-i machine – the words ‘dream’ and ‘team’ are on everyone’s lips... The Consumer Association launches a new junior version of its Which? Magazine, Check It Out! (terrible name!). In its first issue it claims games are a rip-off. CHARTS: ALL FORMATS TOP FIVE Body Blows..................................Team 17 The Chaos Engine .................Renegade X-Wing...........................................US Gold Sleepwalker ....................................Ocean Lemmings 2.............................Psygnosis
BRIT INSPIRATION AWARDS The stars were out in force at the British Inspiration Awards – honouring the best talent across TV, music, fashion, film and the arts. Games Workshop cofounder and life president of Eidos Ian Livingstone picked up the gong for Interactive Entertainment, beating other finalists including Rockstar’s founder Sam Houser and Codemasters’ co-founders David and Richard Darling. Other winners included the late designer Alexander McQueen (fashion) and Glastonbury Festival founder Michael Eavis (special recognition category).
MEDIA Future’s latest ABC results are out. Wanna see ‘em? Amiga Format 144,330 (-10.4%) Sega Power 102,033 (+33.5%) Total 81,313 (+1.3%) ST Format 62,210 (-10.5%) PC Format 60,141 (+8.4%) Amiga Power 50,222 (-16.5%) Commodore Format 44,442 (-25.9%) Amiga Shopper 43,290 (-11.2%) Amstrad Action 27,090 (-23.2%) AND FINALLY Danielle Woodyatt, then at Virgin, now permanently at Lunch, wrote us a poem. Sample lines: ‘High on life – or mushrooms?’; ‘What happened to those bribes?’
MCV takes soundings from its Retail Advisory Board on the biggest issues of the day. The current members are...
GAME & Gamestation
Duncan Cross, Asda
Marc Spence, Best Buy
Don McCabe, CHIPS
Tim Ellis, HMV
Graham Chambers, Amazon
Danielle Fleming, DSGi
Igor Cipolletta, ShopTo
Anthony Stocker, Argos
Stephen Staley, Gameseek
Keith Sharpe, play.com
Joanna Hunt, Tesco
Sarah Jasper, The Hut
Gurdeep Hunjan, Sainsbury’s
Jon Biggs, Morrisons
Phil Moore, Grainger Games
Azeem Sadiq, Comet
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The brands, people and technology that have dominated decades. This week, formats...
It’s hard to explain this without sounding like one of the Four Yorkshiremen, maybe all of them, but games used to come on cassettes: crappy, flimsy cassettes. They ‘boasted’ the storage capacity of a 74 year old’s bladder and, continuing the analogy, quite often didn’t work at all. Most archaically of all, they were often Sellotaped to the front of magazines. Sellotape, cassettes, magazines. In about two generations time that list will sound like: mead, two points for a win, monogamy. But, they were nice and easy to copy and when you played them in a proper (audio) tape deck, they made a very satisfying bleeurrrrrrrrgh-breeep sound, that, in retrospect, sounds like some very cutting edge electronica. These days, Jet Set Willy would probably get a record deal. If there were still such things as record deals.
Yes, CDs enabled vast improvements in graphics and sound, but mostly it was the look and feel of the discs themselves that seemed like the biggest breakthrough. They were, like Madonna, so shiny and new. They were our passport into the world of ‘proper’ media. They slid into their drives with a sexy little shhhhlup rather than a clumsy great clunk. If the PlayStation had used cartridges, Lara Croft would never have been on the cover of The Face. Rod Cousens once went to an ECTS dressed in a suit made entirely of CDs. People thought he looked very, very smart. Because he did.
Former Sony Studios supremo Phil Harrison has stated that the first generation that will never own physical media has already been born. (The generation that will never bloody pay for everything is probably already here.) They won’t need to own anything. They certainly won’t need to collect anything. They just won’t be able to process the concept. It’s a bit like when the white capitalist devils ‘discovered’ America and ‘bought’ great swathes of land from the natives. The Iroquois, Lenape and other tribes took the trinkets not because they were stupid, but because their culture didn’t hold with idea that anyone could or would pay for anything that was just there for you, constantly. As far as they were concerned it didn’t need to belong to anyone because it belonged to everyone. Only this new generation isn’t being naïve, they’re not going to lose the Empire State, they’re going to inherit the Earth and it’s us old bastards that’ll end up in a handful of tokenist reservations. Or ‘shops’ as they will be quaintly called.
The market for computer and video games