THE INTERACTIVE ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY
Friday May 28 2010 £3.25
THE MARKET FOR COMPUTER AND VIDEO GAMES
Issue 589 Friday May 28 2010 £3.25
04 West is best Red Dead shakes off stock issues to take £10m in its opening weekend
International Media Partner
06 Deus Ex gets pre-E3 push Marketing starts for new game – before it even has a release date
11 Arts’ lessons EA UK GM Keith Ramsdale on why the company learned to focus on quality
We look at Nintendo’s Super Mario Galaxy 2
EVERY BUYER EVERY BRANCH EVERY INDIE EVERY WEEK
Activision bets on Black Call of Duty: Black Ops set to raise the bar and trump Modern Warfare 2’s heralded launch ‘This really is our best game yet,’ says developer Treyarch Studio looks beyond ‘unfortunate’ Infinity Ward exodus by James Batchelor THE SEQUEL to the biggest entertainment launch of all time will take Call of Duty to an entirely new level, says Activision. Call of Duty: Black Ops hits shelves on November 9th – 12 months after Modern Warfare 2 smashed sales records. And despite sky-high expectations from retail and consumers, developer Treyarch believes its newest FPS can exceed them. Speaking to MCV as the publisher took the wraps off
going to exceed expectations. This game is going to be huge.” Treyarch is often seen as playing second fiddle to Call of Duty creator Infinity Ward, especially amongst savvy retailers and consumers – but Olin told us that the new game shoots down that stereotype. “We’re going to let Black Ops speak for itself,” he said. “We’re always trying to make the best game we can possibly make, and with Black Ops it really is the best work we’ve ever done.” Activision concedes that Black Ops is going up against
Black Ops is going to exceed expectations. We’ve really ratcheted the bar up for the Call of Duty series. Josh Olin, Treyarch
the game to the press this week, Josh Olin of the Activision-owned studio said the new game raises the bar for the franchise. “Modern Warfare 2 is an extremely successful entertainment launch, record selling, which is absolutely phenomenal,” he told us. “Every Call of Duty game has ratcheted the bar up for the next one, and we’re just ratcheting up the bar one step further. I think Black Ops is
some ‘great competition’ as EA’s Medal Of Honor, TakeTwo’s Spec Ops: The Line and Ubisoft’s Ghost Recon: Future Soldier all look to carve a space in the genre Call of Duty has dominated in recent years. But Olin said Black Ops will “stand out in true Call Of Duty fashion” come November. The developer also has high hopes for the game’s launch, taking inspiration from Modern Warfare 2’s release. “It’s going to be a big year for us,” said Olin.
BLACK MAGIC: Activision says the Cold War theme will help Black Ops stand out from its rivals
The Treyarch exec also commented on the recent drama surrounding Call of Duty creator Infinity Ward – its founders were ousted by Activision amidst claims they were colluding with rival publishers. They have since signed a publishing deal with EA – and many other staff have left IW at the same time. “The situation at Infinity Ward is unfortunate,”
commented Olin. “It’s just not something that we want to let distract us or that we really think about too much. “We’re still focused on our primary charge – to make the best game we possible can – so
we’re keeping our heads down and staying focused. “We’re really sprinting towards that finish line of November 9th.” The game is due for release on Xbox 360, PS3, Wii and PC.
PERSONNEL 24 RETAIL BIZ 25 NEW RELEASES 34 HIGH STREET 36 CHARTS 38
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[LEADER] SLUMP? WHAT SLUMP? ROCKSTAR GAMES must have missed the memo that the games market is supposed to be struggling. In the face of a heatwave and miserly customers, the firm this week shifted hundreds of thousands of Red Dead Redemption to secure the biggest opening of a single game so far in 2010. And despite fraught relations with one super-sized retailer and a shortage of copies on PS3, it notched up over £10m in two days. Impressive. In fact the game was in such demand that within hours of going on sale it had sparked crazy shopfloor rumours that stock was scarce due to a sunken cargo ship. Ridiculous-sounding, of course, but it became so widely spread that I imagine punters imagined it was Niko Bellic himself blowing the boat up before escaping in a helicopter. RDR’s success shows that Rockstar, and parent Take-Two, isn’t just a GTA one-trick pony - and that even in this climate big hits can still surprise. However, Rockstar’s style and adult-only content is unique to it and no one else – and its success is shared only with retailers. Glance over the sales figures for the other games available last weekend, both new and established releases, and you see there’s plenty of pain others are feeling. I expect there is a lot of frowning going on at every publisher that isn’t Rockstar Games. Hopefully this is just momentary gloominess. Certainly, RDR’s blockbuster arrival suggests sunlight is starting to break through the clouds.
STUDIOS TAKE CHARGE YOU CAN tell we’re getting close to E3. Publishers are allowing their pale-skinned developer partners to emerge, blinking into the sunlight, from their dark studio cells. The cattle prods are out, boys – it’s time to start talking about your games to hype them up. I jest, of course. Well, partly. But, going into this E3 in particular, there are a number of publishers that are letting the developers have some time in the driving seat. Treyarch leading the charge for Activision on the next Call of Duty. At another publisher I can’t name just yet, a big new IP set for E3 reveal is being masterminded entirely by its development team. And as I write this, EA is showing off that it has signed former Sony stalwart Insomniac to develop a game for 360. Just three examples there. But in the aftermath of Infinity Ward’s implosion, all publishers – not just Activision – have been reminded that any kind of spat between a studio and a publisher is very, very bad PR when it goes public. And that sometimes developers do know best – after all, without their games sales and marketing teams have nothing to do. Michael.French@intentmedia.co.uk
Red Dead makes £10m in two days Rockstar’s open world Western flies off shelves, sparking stock shortages Retailers praise chart-topping blockbuster launch by James Batchelor RED DEAD REDEMPTION has enjoyed a impressive opening weekend, despite suffering from stock shortages on release day. MCV estimates that the Rockstar title generated in excess of over £10 million at retail in two days. The game is set to keep selling in the coming weeks – provided stock levels are sustainable. The arrival of Red Dead Redemption was somewhat mired as reports emerged of transit problems and a disagreement between Asda and Rockstar owner Take-Two.
manager for games Jonathan Hayes. “As a relatively new brand, it’s almost done this from a standing start.”
The launch went incredibly well and for a new brand, it’s almost done this from a standing start. Jonathan Hayes, HMV
Nevertheless, retailers across the board have praised the game for its inital performance. “The launch went incredibly well,” said HMV’s commercial
GAME’s head of UK PR Neil Ashurst added: “The game was flying out of the stores. Some branches ran out – particularly of the PS3 version, due to a
IN THE SADDLE: Stock issues are already under control
lower than expected level of stock – but this was apparently felt across all of retail. But we’ve had more arrive and we’re expecting another shipment in the next seven days.” Despite the game almost selling out, it debuted at the top of the All Formats Charts. Hayes said: “You could argue that a few sales were lost, but not vast amounts. In fact, there’s so much interest now, that this should carry on next week.” Rockstar: 020 7751 2565
VIRGIN REVEALS NEW GAMES BRAND
Richard Branson’s next venture will be called Virgin Gaming. Details still remain sketchy ahead of a formal launch event at E3 later this month, but MCV can this week reveal the name and logo for what has become one of the biggest stories of the year, and which we exclusively broke last week. The online-only project will work with leading game networks and third party content providers. Virgin Gaming will officially come out of stealth mode with an LA unveiling headed by Branson himself. A countdown on virgingaming.com suggests this will take place at 4pm PST, June 15th.
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High Street ready for iPad launch Apple device hits stores today PC World, Amazon and Dixons among stockists by Dominic Sacco RETAILERS have braced themselves for an iPad sales rush as the potentially lucrative device goes on sale in the UK for the first time today. Video games have become a major selling point for Apple’s latest touch-screen unit – with hundreds of titles available to download from the App Store direct to the device. The gadget is priced from £429 for the 16GB Wi-Fi model to £699 for the 64GB 3G version. Confirmed UK iPad stockists include PC World, Amazon, Dixons, Currys, Play.com and Apple, with Argos planning to sell the device from September. The likes of GAME, Gamestation and HMV have all told MCV that they are interested in stocking the new tablet computer. HMV will sell accessories for the device. GAME previously ran a promotion on its website providing information about the iPad, but could not confirm or deny whether it would be stocking the device. HMV’s technology products manager Ricky Gordon told MCV: “As the
UK’s leading outlet for iPod accessories we’ll certainly be looking to stock this item if we possibly can. “However, we’re mindful of the huge demand that will exist for the iPad among a broad range of competing retailers, and the challenge this will present to Apple. “So whether we can secure some stock in its first wave of release or whether we have to
position, this is still subject to wait a little while is hard to Apple so we aren’t in a say, but I feel sure it will only position to be commenting on be a matter of time before we a product that we do not do. It’s a product we’d love to currently stock.” make available to customers.” Specialist games retailers A spokesperson for Argos Grainger Games and said: “I can confirm Argos ShopTo.net have told MCV plans to sell the iPad from they will not September 2010. be stocking “Like other retailers in y e k l be the gadget. the same s wil ame D: G ccess E PA u GAM iPad’s s e to th
Apple: 0800 039 1212
TOP 10 UNCHARTED 2: PLATINUM PS3, SONY
2. UFC UNDISPUTED + 1GB USB PS3 ............................................THQ
3. LITTLEBIGPLANET 2 PS3 ..........................................SONY
4. SUPER MARIO GALAXY 2 WII ....................................NINTENDO
5. CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS PS3 ....................ACTIVISION BLIZZARD
6. UFC UNDISPUTED + 1GB USB 360 ............................................THQ
7. STARCRAFT II: LIBERTY PC ......................ACTIVISION BLIZZARD
8. ALPHA PROTOCOL 360 ..........................................SEGA
9. CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS 360 ....................ACTIVISION BLIZZARD
LOGIC 3 PARTNERS WITH MCV ON IPAD MCV’s upcoming digital edition iPad app – due on June 11th – will be sponsored by Logic3. The app allows users to download and read a digital version of the latest MCV magazine. Logic3’s Michael Kirkham said: “The iPad innovates and as a company we try to be innovative as well. It is equally important to both the games and accessories industries.”
10. DEMON’S SOULS: PHANTOM PS3 ............................NAMCO BANDAI Week ending: May 21st Source: SHOPTO.COM Turn to page 37 for more pre-order charts from leading online retailers
UK SOFTWARE SALES MONITOR Your weekly guide to the UK games software market… Rockstar’s latest triple-A open world adventure has caused the UK games market to spike, with sales up 50 per cent to £23.7 million. The number of games sold rose by 17 per cent to 876,526. Red Dead Redemption took the charts by storm last week, despite reports of shortages on the PS3. The Wild West shooter arrives just two years after Rockstar last dominated Q2 with Grand Theft Auto IV. Other new titles that helped boost sales included Disney’s Split/Second: Velocity, Ubisoft’s Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands and Sony’s ModNation Racers. There may be no Red Dead Redemption-sized release next week, but there are still a handful of promising new titles set for launch, including Blur, Alpha Protocol and UFC Undisputed 2010.
[WEEKLY MARKET VALUE]
Total UK Software Sales Source: ELSPA/ChartTrack and Intent Media
Week Ending May 22nd 2010
Red Dead Redemption gunned its way to the No.1 spot
Week Ending May 7th
Week Ending May 15th
Week Ending May 22nd
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LEGO Potter ‘a blockbuster event’ Entertainment giant draws on all departments to bolster sales of Traveller’s Tales’ latest adventure by James Batchelor WARNER’S various divisions have united to make LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 a major summer hit. The game has been developed by Traveller’s Tales and is set to recreate the success of previous smashes such as LEGO Star Wars and LEGO Batman – but the publisher believes the Potterinspired adventure can do much more than that. “LEGO Harry Potter will go much further than traditional video games retailers,” said TT Games’ MD Tom Stone. “It’s a true ‘event status’ release for WBIE and, thanks to across-the-board crossdivisional franchise support, is being backed by a huge campaign that only an entertainment company like Warner Bros can successfully achieve.” Warner’s marketing might has resulted in the biggest advertising campaign drawn up for a LEGO game to date.
BUILDING SALES: Traveller’s Tales says that LEGO Harry Potter will be its most successful title yet
There is an enormous advantage to launching a game when you are part of a global entertainment giant. Tom Stone, Traveller’s Tales
The firm has prepared some extensive publicity with stars from the movies, as well as LEGO Hogwarts Expressthemed activities.
This will all be supported by traditional marketing, such as a three-week TV campaign, online advertising and a kids’ print media campaign.
Stone believes Warner’s acquisition of Travellers’ Tales has enabled the developer to reach a much larger audience than ever for its latest LEGO title. “Having been on both sides of the equation – with a very successful games development company and now with Warner Bros – I can tell you there is an enormous
advantage in launching a game when you are part of a global entertainment giant,” he said. “All of the ways that we are now able to reach into the marketplace greatly enhances all of our possibilities for commercial success.” LEGO Harry Potter: Years 14 will be released for all formats on June 25th. Warner: 020 7984 6718
New Deus Ex gets pre-E3 tease campaign SQUARE ENIX has launched a pre-release campaign for the next Deus Ex – before the game even has a release date. A pre-E3 push running across a number of mainstream and
consoles and PC, expected later this year. UK marketing director Jon Brooke told MCV: “Deus Ex: Human Revolution is a major release for Square Enix and the
Deus Ex: Human Revolution is a major release for Square Enix. If you’ve not booked in to see it at E3, please do. Jon Brooke, Square Enix
specialist games sites is teasing the game’s full reveal next month at the June expo in LA. The marketing push aims to drive early awareness ahead of the franchise’s return to
EARLY ADS: Trailers for the new Deus Ex can be seen on YouTube
current online ad activity is just the beginning of what will be a momentous campaign. “The adverts all drive traffic to our YouTube page where consumers can see the first few
trailers – which if you haven’t seen them yet – ooze quality.” Deus Ex: Human Revolution is the latest in the first person RPG series which first launched on the PC in 2001. Eidos published the first game on PlayStation 2 one year later and the sequel, Invisible War, was released in 2004 for PC and Xbox.
Human Revolution is currently in development at Eidos Montreal, which is also working on the revamp of the Thief franchise. The publisher hopes the excitement built by online adverts will set Deus Ex: Human Revolution up as the most successful title in the series. Release timing and
gameplay details are expected at E3. “If you’re not booked in to see Deus Ex: Human Revolution at E3 – which will be strictly by invitation only – then please book a place,” added Brooke. “I guarantee it will knock your socks off.” Square: 0208 636 3000
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More word on Grease at E3 Publisher reveals Wii and DS versions of the original and best high school musical by Dave Roberts 505 HAS unveiled the first details of Grease: The Official Video Game, with the emphasis, appropriately enough, on singing and dancing. The title is due on Wii and DS this September, as one of the most popular and enduring entertainment franchises of the past 30 plus years finally makes its debut in the games arena. The Wii version will be packed with challenges and competitions based around singing and dancing to the movie’s, let’s face it, quite brilliant soundtrack – as well as racing down Thunder Road and celebrating with the TBirds and Pink Ladies at the Rydell High Graduation carnival. It will be compatible with up to two microphones and the Wii Balance Board. There will be also be a Story Mode in which players can fix up Greased Lightnin’ (which is a real pussy wagon, incidentally) or try to win Sandy’s affections. But
essentially it’s a party game, with up to eight players (split into two teams) able to compete at once. On the DS and DSi, players again dance their way through some of the movie’s iconic scenes, following Sandy and Danny on their high school journey. They learn the officially licensed songs and choreographed moves. They can also use the camera function on the DSi to upload their face to their favourite character. Grease will be previewed on 505’s peachy keen booth at E3. Official hands on previews are available by appointment.
UK studio giant plots EU growth DEVELOPER-PUBLISHER Jagex plans to expand further across Europe. It will launch localised versions of its popular MMO RuneScape in Germany and France via online games giant Bigpoint’s DevLounge games portal. “Bigpoint has achieved phenomenal success in France and Germany – echoing our own success in the US, UK and other English speaking territories – so we are confident that RuneScape will be an excellent addition to their games portal,” said Jagex’s head of online strategy Oliver Kern. RuneScape is one of the world’s largest free-to-play MMOs. It will be playable in both English and Portuguese through the Bigpoint portal. Other Jagex titles will head to Germany and France later in the year including War of Legends, Arcanists and Armies of Gielinor.
505: 01908 607 772 SUMMER LOVIN’: 505’s official Grease title will be on show at E3 next month
Jagex: 0844 588 6607
Indies rally behind GamesAid triple pack GAMESEEK, FindAddBuy, PowerPlay Direct, Games Basement, Barkman Computers and Disks and Discs will all be stocking the special GamesAid bundle when it is released on June 25th. The triple-pack, which will retail at £29.99, features Tomb Raider: Underworld from Square Enix, Sega Superstars Tennis and Codemasters racer Fuel, and all profits will go to GamesAid. The set is expected to raise £500,000. “I think it is a fantastic idea and the retail price is spot on,” said online retailer Gameseek’s owner Stephen Staley. “I expect it to sell well if it is
promoted across the internet – we’re helping it get more exposure on search engines by listing the product names
Computers founder Nick Elliott revealed his store will even be bundling it in with new consoles.
I think it is a fantastic idea and the price is spot on. I expect it to sell well if it is promoted across the internet. Stephen Staley, Gameseek
rather than just ‘GamesAid Triple Pack’.” Many of the indies will also be helping in their own way to ensure that the pack is a success. FindAddBuy will be promoting the pack heavily on its homepage while Barkman
He said: “The triple-pack is a great idea, and it will really encourage consumers to support the cause and get the name of GamesAid out there.” Games Basement director Michael Anthony added: “Obviously, we think it is a very
good thing. It’s in support of a brilliant charity, and Games Basement is happy to do whatever it can to help. “It’s a great package that features some fantastic titles and represents great value for money.” Stafford-based indie Disks and Discs has expressed its interest in the bundle and is currently speaking to distributor Advantage to secure stock. Larger indies CHIPS and Grainger Games have already pledged their support to GamesAid’s retail initiative, as have Best Buy. Amazon, Asda, ShopTo, Play.com and The Hut.
The GamesAid charity bundle goes on sale for the PS3 on June 25th. www.gamesaid.org
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Rock ‘n’ Roll focus for Guitar Hero 6 Activision to take franchise back to its roots with upcoming title ROCK KING: Activision recently won an award for its radio Guitar Hero promotion: ‘One Last Dream’
by Dominic Sacco ACTIVISION says Guitar Hero 6 will see the franchise return to its rock ‘n’ roll roots. The latest in the recordbreaking music series is due to arrive before the end of the year on multiple formats, along with a new DJ Hero title. UK brand manager Jon Edney told MCV: “In many ways we are taking the brand back to its roots and to what made it the biggest selling music game franchise of all time. “We are forever reminded of the need for Guitar Hero to evolve each year and not just drop a different track list into the game. “Every year the guys at Neversoft keep on delivering – last year with a game that topped the UK charts.” The Guitar Hero series has seen an increasingly frequent string of spin-offs such as DJ
Hero, Guitar Hero: Metallica and Band Hero, which differ from the rock ‘n’ roll original. The series has sold more than 44 million copies worldwide. Meanwhile, Activision took home the Sony Radio Academy award for best use of branded content in Guitar Hero radio promotion ‘One Last Dream’ –
“To have a campaign recognised at the most prestigious radio awards ceremony is always pleasing, but what made this promotion great was how we had the chance to give something back,” added Edney. “With regards to Guitar Hero specifically, when you
We’re forever reminded of the need for Guitar Hero to evolve each year. We are taking the brand back to its roots. Jon Edney, Activision
a competition that specifically encouraged classic rock bands to reform. The competition ran last summer on Absolute FM and gave the winning band, The Original Sinners, the chance to get back together and perform alongside Bruce Springsteen and The Killers.
look at the other global brands that were also nominated at the awards, it is a sign of how far our brand has come. “Not bad for a music video game franchise that was born under five years ago.” Guitar Hero 6 is scheduled for release this autumn.
Activision: 0203 060 1000
WEEK CAMPAIGN OF THE 2010 UFC UNDISPUTED THQ has prepared a heavyweight ad campaign to ensure that UFC 2010 surpasses last year’s chart-topper...
TV THQ’s TV spend for UFC 2010 is more than double what it invested last year. Activity is already underway, with spots ahead of Flash Forward, The Gadget Show, Resident Evil, Inbetweeners and 24 as well as recent football games. Furthermore, the firm placed ads around video-on-demand on Virgin, Dave, 4OD and the Perform Sport Network during April and May. THQ has also sponsored UFC programming in the UK across the FIVE and ESPN network of channels. WEB THQ began its online activity at the beginning of the year on networks such as VideoEgg. This has been followed by a pre-order drive with advertising on Eurogamer, CVG, Gamespot, Gamesradar and VG247. Advertising on mainstream sites such as MSN, Sky Sports, The Sun and Nuts will begin from launch. PRINT UFC print advertising will appear in specialist press and
RELEASED: MAY 28 FORMATS: 360, PS3, PSP PUBLISHER: THQ DEVELOPER: YUKE’S PRICE: £49.99 DISTRIBUTOR: ADVANTAGE CONTACT: 0121 506 9590 male lifestyle magazines, including Zoo, Nuts, Loaded and Shortlist. Meanwhile, national press advertising will go live from launch. RADIO THQ is running a promotion with TalkSport. The campaign will allow listeners to win tickets to a UFC fight in Las Vegas, along with backstage passes. This will be supported by on-air spots, DJ promotion and ads on TalkSport.net. OUTDOOR UFC 2010 will be advertised in almost 30 shopping centres in the UK for a two week period from the bank holiday weekend. Additional advertising will also take place on the Sky Pub network and on phone boxes.
THE LARGEST DEDICATED VIDEOGAMES SHOW IN THE UK 1 - 3
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O-Games eyes Tiger success Professional golfer John Daly on-board to help UK firm take on EA’s juggernaut by James Batchelor A NEW CONTENDER will enter the golf market this autumn in the form of John Daly’s ProStroke Golf. Publisher O-Games says the title will establish itself in the UK thanks to contributions from its pro golfer namesake. “John Daly is very important to the game as we wanted to have a character who was well known on and off the course,” said O-Games’ CEO Jim Scott. “He is one of the most remarkable golf players ever. John’s style and personality makes him the perfect licence for our product.” In addition to lending his name and face to the product, Daly has also helped develop the ProStroke control system, a key selling point for the upcoming golf sim. His feedback has helped produce a realistic golf swing mechanic, and his time at the publisher’s motion capture
FULL SWING: John Daly has helped develop the ProStroke control system for O-Games’ latest release
NINTENDO: Dragon Quest IX: Sentinels of the Starry Skies has been given a July 23rd release date in the UK. Developed by Square Enix, it has sold 4.2m units in Japan since releasing last July. FUTURE: Profits rose 13 per cent to £3.6m at Future Publishing for the six months ending March 31st. However, revenues fell seven per cent. SEGA: Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 1 has been delayed until the latter half of this year. The digital-only game will be available on XBLA, PSN, WiiWare and iPhone.
Tiger Woods has been the dominate title in the genre but people want a fresh challenge from golf games. Jim Scott, O-Games
studio ensures that fans will be able to play the game “looking and swinging like the Lion himself”, according to Scott.
The new game will go headto-head with EA’s behemoth Tiger Woods, but O-Games is confident that ProStroke Golf
will more than hold its own: “Tiger Woods has been the dominate game in the market but critics have said it hasn’t changed much and people want a fresh challenge,” said Scott. “ProStroke Golf offers a more authentic golf experience than Tiger, but is still accessible and more importantly fun to play.” O-Games: 01933 442660
THQ: A new lie detector title – Truth or Lies – has been announced by THQ. It uses a microphone to tell if players are lying. The game is due in autumn for Wii, 360 and PS3. TECMO KOEI: Revenues are down at Tecmo Koei, which published a $2m year-onyear dip in profits to $29m. Sales hit $380m, down 13.8 per cent compared to 2009. SONY: Killzone 2 has won the Ivor Novello Award for best original video game score.
Rebrand for Mamba after Lace merger PUBLISHER Mamba is now known as Lace Mamba Global. The firm has rebranded following its merger with the distributor as it makes a bid to move from budget PC products to console games. Lace Mamba Global’s Jason Codd told MCV: “Our objective is to offer premium games products in both download and packaged form. “We pride ourselves on creating beautiful collectors editions packed with unique extras, and strive to offer only
the best adventure games for immediate download.” Lace Mamba Global’s previous PC titles include Black Mirror II, Mata Hari and Achtung Panzer. Its first console release is due this autumn.
“We have some extremely exciting projects coming up like the highly anticipated Q3 release and Jane Jensen game – Gray Matter – which will be on 360 and PC,” Codd added. “So Blonde was also a real success on PC and it fits perfectly for the Wii and DS so we have a strong catalogue for this year and early 2011.” Lace Mamba Global’s head office is based in Brighton and it has other branches in London, LA and Paris. Lace Mamba: 01273 202 220
G E T I N V O L V E D in the biggest videogaming event in the UK Contact David Lilley: Email email@example.com Web expo.eurogamer.net
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u o y r e ff o e m t e L t. ﬁ My goal is your pro
. l a e D t c e The Perf
Talk to me at E3!
Pelle Svärd is our Nordic Sales Manager
Pelle Svärd, a man in his prime and a games business veteran in the Nordic gaming industry. He’s as close to an institution as it gets. Appreciating a nicely cooked steak, he is often found close to the BBQ in his garden. Vacations is preferrably spent in Austin, Texas if you want to spend time with him. “The bottom line for me is your bottom line. My driving force is clients that makes more money with our solutions, simple as that! Long experience gives deep knowledge about everything related to the point of sale. I take a particular interest in the pallet concept. It has proved it’s role as a beacon in store and I’ll gladly tell you more at this years E3.” Pelle is a doer with an invaluable background in distribution, publishing and wholesaling. Not afraid to speak his mind, he will be more than happy to tell you all about the Nordic gaming industry and our concepts, from the pallet concept to new ones aimed at e-retailers.
Come and meet Pelle at E3! He’s a big part of our team in the Game Outlet stand, #529 in the South Hall. Game Outlet is Europe’s leading provider of overstocks and close-outs for all platforms. The company’s portfolio includes products from the world’s leading interactive entertainment developers. Working in 45 countries Game Outlet supplies the market with more than 6 000 000 games every year. Game Outlet Europe AB Switchboard +46 54 85 47 50 E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org Web www.gameoutlet.se
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MCV INTERVIEW KEITH RAMSDALE, VP & UK GENERAL MANAGER, EA
Arts’ lessons EA’s market share is up, it’s already had two mega hits in 2010 and recently previewed a stellar second half line-up to impressed partners. But, this is a games publisher that has learned not to crow and not to relax. Dave Roberts talks to UK boss Keith Ramsdale about taking things one title at a time… EA FEATURES used to be, mostly, about EA. Not that long ago, when the publisher’s revenues hit the eight figure mark, an MCV interview with then CEO Larry Probst was headlined ‘The Billion Dollar Man’. Such billing would, if run today, send the firm’s senior execs and watchful trans-Atlantic PR team into apoplectic meltdown. Back then, of course, it seemed the obvious pitch. EA had bulked up so much and so quickly that its sheer size was (not quite literally) the elephant in the room. You couldn’t help but stare. And comment. And EA couldn’t help checking itself out in the media’s mirror now and again. THE STATE OF PLAY Now, though, despite the fact that it’s bigger and – in some proper, measurable
For the record, where EA is at today is what marketing and PR types would no doubt call ‘an interesting space’ in an otherwise non-descript area of wildest west London. It’s here that the publisher’s 2010 portfolio is being presented to retailers. A few hours earlier, UK GM and VP Keith Ramsdale delivered some opening remarks to the assembled key accounts. At the heart of his message was a degree of pride, not in EA’s achievements but in EA’s products; the products his audience have been selling for the last 12 months and the ones he hopes they’ll sell more of than ever between now and the end of the year. In a makeshift canteen a little later, he recaps for MCV: “It was mainly about the quality bar and how that’s translated into performance – for them and for us. More than 20 of our
Our metacritic scores are a sign of more dedication to quality throughout EA and proves we’re delivering better experiences. Keith Ramsdale, EA
ways – better than ever, size doesn’t seem to matter so much. EA has, to use daytime TV parlance, gotten over itself. And interviews with the firm’s leaders tend to be about what it’s doing, not how it’s doing. Mainly they’re about product – with some strategy stuff and a bit of industry overview thrown in. The light dusting of numbers – the market share, the chart placings, sell-throughs etc – usually come at the end. They’re the byproduct, the full stop at the end of the sentence, not the subject. For EA it’s not about where it’s at or even where it’s going, it’s about how it got here and what it learned along the way. If the word ‘journey’ hadn’t been turned toxic by a thousand reality TV contestants, it may well have been deployed round about now.
franchises in the last fiscal year scored 80 per cent or over on Metacritic. I think that’s a meteoric sign of more attention and dedication to quality throughout the company and really proves that we’re delivering a better and better entertainment experience to consumers.” THE FIVE PILLARS OF EA Ramsdale talks of five core sectors which are now viewed by EA as ongoing, constant businesses rather than a series of quite similar products: Football, Racing, Sims, Shooters and Fitness. Some of these are comprised of many different brands, some revolve around a single IP – but, Ramsdale explains, they all have something in common. “We consider them all to be yearround opportunities,” he says. “And that
SMILES ALL ROUND: Ramsdale believes EA is in a stronger position than ever with plenty of quality titles on shelves and in development driving future growth
means year-round work with retail, yearround marketing and year-round communication with the communities – a key part of which is new content.” Unlike a modern midfielder, it seems, EA’s games these days don’t go from box to box. The gaps are filled by marketing noise, retail promotions and by DLC. That last element has, of course, been very much in the news lately. EA
recently introduced a tactic of including a single-use only code with its games, enabling consumers to download extra content straight out of the box, but then charging subsequent owners of that disc $10 to access the same content. It’s a reward for buying new or punishment for buying pre-owned, depending on your standpoint and how highly you value the extra content.
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MCV INTERVIEW KEITH RAMSDALE, VP & UK GENERAL MANAGER, EA And it’s attracted a lot of comment. Ramsdale is adamant, however, that the motivation behind the move is purely positive: “It’s all about the customer, about improving their experience. It’s not a defensive measure against preowned or piracy.” It’s also reflective of a more general trend in the industry, he says, one that’s affecting hardware manufacturers as much as software publishers. “All our jobs have changed, I think,” he says. “And that’s a sign of the business growing up and becoming a mature entertainment industry as much as anything. The approach is different. The platform holders’ job now is to educate products over the next consumers as to what their machines 12 months. Ramsdale can do and to update via firmware. expects growth in both They don’t need to ship a new box. businesses, even if the “Essentially, of course, their job is still overall market trend is selling more units. Y’know, we want a flat or slight decline. PS3 and an Xbox 360 in every home, of Wii’s still in the mix, course we do, but they’ll do that not of course, but “it’s less necessarily by bringing out a new about Wii being in machine, but by continually updating everything we do and more about and improving their established offering deciding what we can do that appeals to and making sure that message gets the Wii’s audience”. through to consumers. The very biggest games, of course, “Meanwhile, our jobs have changed continue to appear on all three, a good because, as I’ve said, we need to market recent example being FIFA World Cup and update our products DLC is all about improving year-round, where that’s the customer’s experience. credible, and we need to bring innovations that It’s not a defence against match and exploit the piracy or pre-owned. updates that are being Keith Ramsdale, EA driven through the consoles.” which has topped the charts and These include, of course, Move and outperformed expectations. Natal for PS3 and Xbox 360. Ramsdale “We sold 100,000 units in the first confirms that EA will have product week and 70,000 in the second week. ready for both new devices at launch, The great unknown, but that the firm won’t reveal its hand of course, is until E3. how well England will EA’S LATEST HITS do, and that It’s noticeable that most of the talk is of PS3 and Xbox 360 – and these are the formats that will benefit from the majority of EA’s
CHART TOPPERS: EA has already seen incredible success this year thanks to 2010 FIFA World Cup and Battlefield: Bad Company 2
obviously affects things greatly. What’s interesting is that FIFA ‘event SKUs’ are usually the worst reviewed, but this time World Cup is our best football game yet according to a lot of journalists.” Another huge hit this year has been Battlefield: Bad Company 2, earmarked early on as an important product in EA’s fight to regain the FPS crown from Activision. Ramsdale’s understandably pleased: “It’s been great. The press reaction has been focused largely on how good the multiplayer is. It’s now recognised as genre defining, and the way the market’s going, that’s key. “Are we going to beat Modern Warfare sales this year with any single title? No. But do we have a long-
term goal of taking more market share or possibly growing the market? Yes.” Is he delighted that Infinity Ward seems to be imploding and that key former personnel are turning up at a new developer signed to EA? We’d be too polite to even ask. And Ramsdale would be far too polite to answer. What he does say, tellingly, is that “we’re pretty much always positively paranoid about all our franchises”. He knows market share is won through individual battles. And that each of those is more challenging, hard fought and worthy of focus than the end of term reports that tot them all up. He wants to win the league, but like all good managers, what he works hardest to win are matches. Which is as good a time as any for some scores: Last year EA reclaimed its number one market share slot in the UK with 17 per cent. On a rolling 12 month basis, its market share is three per cent up and if you take the first four months of 2010 cummulatively compared to 2009, it’s five per cent up, from 13 to 18. It’s currently number one in the UK, Europe and the world. Full stop.
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In association with
MCV 28/05/10 15
Power’ In the first of our in-depth profiles of the UK top independent retailers, James Batchelor takes a look at PowerPlay Direct…
[FACTFILE] OPENED: 1988 LOCATION: EASTBOURNE OWNER: COLIN BASSETT STORE COUNT: TWO, PLUS WEBSITE CONTACT: 0844 815 7167
WHILE MANY independent retailers are in fact, the Hereford branch has just compelled to choose between a bricks enjoyed a complete refurbishment. and mortar business model or an online And, of course, PowerPlay Direct is one, PowerPlay Direct is blessed with a always looking for new ways to grow its healthy presence in both arenas. indie empire, both on the High Street The company has been running a and online. network of websites since 2002 – “Where possible, and where the handled by PowerPlay’s headquarters in sensible business opportunities lie, Eastbourne – and boasts two High expansion would be great,” says Mulvey. Street stores. “It is all about finding the right outlet These can be found in such far flung and right deal. locations as Hereford and Leicester, “As far as bricks and mortal retail is with the latter branch boasting a shop concerned, it’s about consolidating what floor size of 15,000 square feet. we have then expanding. However, it is the website that continues to form the cornerstone of PowerPlay Direct’s business. The site provides a significant portion of the firm’s revenue and is crucial to accomplishing its goals. Shaun Mulvey, PowerPlay Direct “As far as online is concerned, one of our big targets this year is substantially “As independent stores, we can look growing our turnover,” says PowerPlay’s to put pressure on stores such as GAME marketing manager Shaun Mulvey. “It is and HMV. We are not exclusively a an area we will be quite aggressive in games shop – we sell an array of over the next five months. I’m aiming to multimedia. That means we’ve got more treble our turnover.” competition because we’re competing But PowerPlay’s stores are not with HMV and the like. neglected by any means. They are “I think there is a huge area for supported by a staff of 30 to 40 people, independent businesses within our and are just as key to PowerPlay’s sector. What we are doing, and I think business as its website. The company what others should do, is reinvent the takes pride in keeping its stores fresh – way we look at things. Offering people
that perception of that big corporate shopping experience, but maintaining those independent advantages – knowledgeable staff, a wide range of products, good back catalogue and so on. A lot of High Street chains aren’t particularly great at these.” GRAPPLING WITH GROCERS Like many in the independent sector, PowerPlay Direct also faces significant competition from supermarkets. Rather than undercutting on price, Mulvey is determined to beat the all-purpose grocers in ways that only an indie can. “As a business we are not prepared to get in a tit-fortat battle with supermarkets,” he says. “When it comes to selling Modern Warfare 2 for £26, I’m not prepared to lose money on that. I’d rather offer people a genuine reason to use us. “That’s where we come in with creativity around our promotions. Call of Duty was the perfect example. We offered people the chance to play it on a 42 ft cinema screen – the real gamer was willing to spend an extra tenner to experience that.” In fact, it is by focusing on the unique qualities only found at independent retail that Mulvey believes PowerPlay
We can reinvent the indie sector by offering a big corporate experience with independent advantages.
can not only maintain its own fortunes, but also boost the indie sector. “We need to re-invent ourselves,” he says. “If you look at us from the music and DVD-side of thing, HMV will always be very competitive. However, they don’t have a massive range of back catalogue products. “One of the weakness of the High Street is that you have 100 stores in a chain that are all following a very specific brand identity – independents don’t have to follow that. One thing we can do with stores in multiple areas is tailor ourselves, have a brand ethos but be considerate to the region we are in. “For instance, we may run a very different campaign in Leicester than we would in Hereford. A large multiple chain won’t have that opportunity. As an independent we can communicate and engage with our local community at a much better level.”
TOP 20 UK INDIES MCV and Nindie.com offer a rundown of the best indie game stores in the UK.
Visit tinyurl.com/top20indies or turn to page 14 in MCV 587.
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In association with
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Game On The independent sector can be tough on retailers focusing solely on games, but Game On has long since found a lucrative solution. James Batchelor reports…
[FACTFILE] OPENED: 1997 LOCATION: SAFFRON WALDEN OWNER: MATTHEW BRADY STORE COUNT: ONE CONTACT: 01799 506070
SOME INDIES see their store count fluctuate as the years go on, but Game On is one of the few that has racked up more than a decade of happy customers with a single outlet. Based in Saffron Walden, the store has been operating for more than 13 years. With the workload shared between its three members of staff, Game On prides itself on being more than a games retailer. As well as the latest titles for the current generation of consoles, the firm also stocks trading cards and Games Workshop items – in fact, it’s one of Games Workshop’s Top 20 UK outlets. It may seem like an odd array of products to find in a games store, but as well as offering financial benefits, they help to make shopping at Game On a rare if not unique experience. “These products are not only good margin makers, they also compliment what we offer and give people another reason to visit our store,” says Game On owner Matthew Brady. “We get gamers, but also people that are just interested in models and painting and so forth. And there’s crossover too, such as the various Warhammer games, and there’s more titles to come.”
Stocking a broader range of products has actually proved to be so lucrative for Game On that it is actually looking to stock more rather than investing in new or additional premises, focusing on bolstering their income rather than their outgoings. “We are not looking at expanding at the moment in terms of new openings,” says Brady. “But we are looking at more alternative physical product, such as
stock, and then come in and collect them,” says Brady. “They can also contact us via e-mail, find details on our other services, such as console repairs and disc cleaning – and that’s on top of information on pricing. Our website is another way to keep customers happy and another avenue for them to contact us.” Of course, satisfying consumers is becoming increasingly difficult thanks to the rise of supermarkets and the continuing domination of national chains, but Brady has adapted his business model to Matthew Brady, Game On accommodate for this. “It is very tough – especially when toys and board games. Ultimately, we they’re selling below our costs and would like to expand our store base but below their costs,” he says. the location has to be right.” “It’s even harder when customers come to us and say ‘supermarkets are FOCUSED ON FOOTFALL selling Call of Duty for £26 and you’re And while the retailer has the obligatory selling it for £50 – what’s going on web presence, Game On is keen to make there?’ It’s frustrating. sure the site doesn’t draw attention “That said, we do get loyal customers away from the store. who come back, because it is about Instead, many of the website’s availability, customer service, customer features have been tailored to driving knowledge and the option to trade higher footfall on the High Street. games in as well. “The online side of our business is “We didn’t previously sell pre-owned auxiliary, but our customers also use games, but it’s become more necessary our site to see what games we have in otherwise you don’t have the margin.
If you specialise in something, specialise in it well. Supermarkets just put the box on the shelf.
You might not make much money from a new game, but when they come in and trade it in again, you start seeing some money back. We do trade-in on DVDs as well.” To have survived almost 15 years in the business from a single store is a commendable feat, but more important are the lessons Game On has learned along the way. And as the company continues to offer its customers more than just the latest games, other indies stand to learn a few things themselves. “If you do specialise in something, specialise in it well,” adds Brady. “We don’t sell everything, we just focus on what we do really well and make sure we know all about it. “We treat Game On more like how a traditional shop would be, and build a relationship with the customer. We are more than the supermarkets, who just put the box on the shelf.”
TOP 20 UK INDIES MCV and Nindie.com offer a rundown of the best indie game stores in the UK.
Visit tinyurl.com/top20indies or turn to page 14 in MCV 587.
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WORLD CUP SPECIAL
gold FOOTBALL is a huge business, generating hundreds of millions of pounds in sponsorship, ticket and merchandise sales every year. It’s also the world’s biggest sport with billions of global fans – the typical England cup match attracts over 20m TV viewers alone. So when a range of video games and accessories tie in with the tournament, World Cup fever will provide retailers with a summer sales boost. EA’s 2010 FIFA World Cup – the officially licensed video game – is already performing exceptionally well. After being released on April 30th it shot straight to the top of the GfK ChartTrack multiformat Top 40 charts, selling 100,000 units in the first weekend and 70,000 in the second week. The title managed to hold its position for a hat-trick of three consecutive weeks, beating triple-A titles such as Microsoft’s Alan Wake, Capcom’s Super Street Fighter IV and the latest in another of EA’s big sporting franchises – Skate 3. EA VP and UK MD Keith Ramsdale told MCV: “Our expectations were high, but the game has over-delivered dramatically. “We are ahead of target so far and this bodes well for where lifetime sales will go in the future. “Once the Premiership finishes, appetites start to shift quickly to the World Cup, so we needed to be out then and we’re seeing the benefits. “I watch World Cup games first and foremost as a fan – it’s only a little later that I start to think about what England’s results will do to sales. An England versus Germany final would be the dream scenario as those are two huge FIFA markets.”
The World Cup tournament kicks off on June 11th in South Africa and runs for one month up to the final on July 11th. This gives retail two weeks beforehand to benefit from the initial interest and four weeks to generate ongoing sales while excitement builds during the tournament. FLYING THE FLAG
The other officially licensed products come from peripheral manufacturer Exspect, which offers a range of England-branded accessories. These include a collection of ‘Three Lions’ skins for the DSi, iPhone and iPod Touch – all available now. The firm also says this is likely to be followed with a series of laptop skins and BlackBerry covers later in the year, and is certain that the World Cup can increase sales performance. Exspect’s video game product manager William Slater says: “Our series of England-themed products really capture the patriotism and excitement of fans, as well as attracting buyers of key software such as EA’s 2010 FIFA World Cup. “Our officially-licensed skins combine quality with an impulse purchase price of £7.99 and are easily removable after the World Cup has finished. We expect continued interest as licensed products are still appropriate in the longer term.” THE BEAUTIFUL GAMES
Other football games likely to benefit from World Cup excitement include Ubisoft’s Pure Football – released today (May 28th) and Konami’s PES 2010 which is out now. Ubisoft also believes stocking other non-gaming football products would be a wise move for retailers this summer.
The World Cup kicks off next month and retailers are already feeling the powerful effect it’s having on the games trade. Dominic Sacco takes a look at the key products ready to give retail sales an added kick this summer…
An England versus Germany final would be the dream scenario as those are two huge FIFA markets. Keith Ramsdale, EA
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WORLD CUP SPECIAL
“There is the obvious benefit for retail in terms of the reach of the World Cup into everybody’s lives, and the opportunity it offers for the marketing of football-related products and merchandise,” adds Ubisoft senior brand manager Phil Brannelly. “Take advantage and get all of your footy products front of store and mind, and even look at new football-related lines to generate incremental revenue – for example selling England flags with Pure Football. “We are not here to challenge FIFA or PES but simply to offer an alternative gaming experience. “We are confident, long term, that it will be enjoyed by a certain audience looking for a title – and the only title – offering an experience that is less about
the technical side of the game but more fun and easy to pick up and play.” The game features Liverpool star and England vice captain Steven Gerrard on its box art – and Ubisoft believes his performance in the tournament could be of benefit to the brand. “His role in this World Cup will be key to England getting anywhere so fingers crossed he pulls it out of the bag – a hat-trick from Gerrard in the final would do nicely for many reasons,” comments Brannelly. Meanwhile, Konami is also hoping its PES 2010 football game will receive a boost in interest following a string of free DLC. A downloadable pack went live last month, and the publisher has other free add-ons planned. The latest pack gave owners of the game updated footballers and stats, including the official match ball of this year’s UEFA Champions League final and Lionel Messi’s Adidas F50i TUNiT football boots. GIRLS JUST WANNA HAVE FUN
Even Mindscape’s karaoke sing-along game U-Sing: Girls Night could benefit from the World
Cup sales boom. The publisher expects the Wii title – due for release on June 18th – to perform well with casual female players. Mindscape UK’s general manager Mark Stanger says: “There’s a very strong female audience interested in this kind of product. “We’re very much coming with this marketing and PR angle that ‘while the boys are away, the girls will play’ World Cup football-free zone. “The game features a girls-only karaoke track list and as far as we know this hasn’t been done before. Users will be able to sing their favourite female singers’ hit songs with their friends for an unforgettable girls night.” Independent retailers are also confident of increased consumer interest generated from the World Cup. GameXchange’s Stretford store manager Leanne Barnett comments: "I think we’ll benefit from the World Cup in terms of more football game and accessory sales. “2010 FIFA World Cup is selling really well and we’ve always got people asking for it. Once the tournament kicks off, customer interest could potentially increase further.”
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WORLD CUP SPECIAL 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP EA Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, PSP The officially licensed World Cup game is based on last year’s fastest-selling sports title of all time – FIFA 10 – which sold 1.7m copies in Europe during its first week alone. 2010 FIFA World Cup has all 199 teams that took part in qualifying, South Africa’s ten official stadiums and an online mode. Players can take a team all the way from the qualifying stages through to the final.
ENGLAND ACCESSORIES Exspect DSi, iPhone, iPod Touch, Blackberry, laptop Exspect’s range of ‘Three Lions’ skins are available for the Nintendo DSi, iPhone and iPod Touch, with Blackberry and laptop skins to follow later this year. The covers are easy to apply, remove and reuse and feature both home and away themes. Alongside the selection of football games available this summer, the broad appeal of these accessories provides a welcome margin maker for retailers.
PURE FOOTBALL Ubisoft Xbox 360, PS3, PC Taking a pick up and play approach to the football game genre could bode well for Ubisoft – the publisher says new IP Pure Football focuses predominantly on fun. The game features teams of five instead of the traditional 11, there are no red or yellow cards and the offside rule is thrown away – gamers just have to score. There are 230 elite players from 17 international teams including Liverpool and England star Steven Gerrard, who has been signed as the face of Pure Football.
PES 2010 Konami Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, PC, iPhone, PSP, PS2
PES 2010 – the latest iteration of the cult hit Pro Evolution Soccer series was released last October and stormed to the top of the charts. Publisher Konami promoted it with its biggest marketing spend of 2009, as well as adding detailed player designs for realism, upgraded managerial elements, varied crowd reactions and an overhauled penalty system. The game’s cover stars include Liverpool’s Fernando Torres and Barcelona’s Lionel Messi. The PES franchise is generally regarded as a strong alternative to the FIFA games, focusing on depth of gameplay and multiplayer.
U-SING GIRLS NIGHT Mindscape Wii Mindscape is growing its karaoke brand U-Sing with Girls Night – a new collection of songs from female artists. The publisher is targeting a specific audience as a result of the World Cup with this title – females who will be having nights in as their boyfriends and husbands head out to watch football matches together. The game features a range of popular tracks, a USing Wii Store and multiplayer modes. U-Sing Girls Night is released for Wii on June 18th.
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MCV INTERVIEW GEOFF HEATH, 4MM
Measuring up Set up by two Rockstar founders last year, publisher 4mm is slowly making a name for itself in the industry. Christopher Dring speaks to Geoff Heath, recruited to advise the firm, about 4mm’s plans for the UK… Why have 4mm decided to set up in the UK? In order to cater to the needs of the European market, and especially because 4mm’s games are so heavily online-centric. We needed an office here that would allow us to work closely with key partners, from marketing to sales to media and ensure appropriate levels of customer support. Focusing the build on 4mm’s first title Def Jam Rapstar gives us an immediate focus. It’s early days – the office only opened this month – but we’re excited to have already appointed Gavin Shackell, who was previously VP global marketing at EMI Music, as European marketing director. We look to have some further announcements in the coming months. You’ve been hired as an advisory board member. What can you bring to the table for 4mm? I’ve known Nick Perrett, 4mm’s CEO, for a long time and have a lot of respect for him and 4mm’s vision; we share a lot of common views on the future of the industry. As well as strategic input, my contacts in the industry and background as CEO of an online games publisher will be very helpful to the company as it grows. Is 4mm interested in opening a UK development studio as well? This is absolutely something we’re looking at – the UK has a tremendous talent pool and history in games. We will be watching closely to see if the new government follows through on its pre-election proposals of tax breaks. Konami is 4mm’s distributor in Europe. Is this a long-term arrangement, or will 4mm bring its operations in-house at some point? 4mm has established a great relationship with Konami and they have been incredibly supportive on Def Jam Rapstar. Their experience in the music game genre is second to none. We hope
SHARE THE MUSIC: Heath believes Def Jam Rapstar’s online connectivity will help change the definition of social gaming
this relationship will be a long-term one and there are no plans to build physical distribution in Europe.
where ‘social’ becomes a feature – where all games build in social hooks to better engage their players.
What are 4mm’s long-term ambitions? 4mm aspires to become a global digital publisher. It has a novel take on what the customer-facing organisation of the future needs to look like and will demonstrate what its plans are in the coming months.
Digital seems to be all the rage in the industry at the moment. How will 4mm compete in this space? Success will go to companies who best understand how to manage customers and digital distribution partners, who best leverage the web and, obviously, who make the best games. 4mm’s team
How important do you 4mm aspires to become a feel social gaming will global digital publisher and be in future? The 4mm team feels that has a novel take on what the we are very much at the future needs to look like. beginning of the social Geoff Heath, 4mm games market. Def Jam Rapstar is a social game – not in the has a very unique blend of backgrounds pure ‘game played on a social network’ to pull that off. sense, but with the extensive onlineconnected play and promotional What makes Def Jam Rapstar metagame across social networks it is. different to other music games? The lines will blur over time as to First off, Def Jam Rapstar is the first what a social game is – we see a future music game for the current generation
of consoles to focus exclusively on hip hop. In addition to the music, it will use your console’s camera to record and upload your performances to our fully community online. There’s a whole metagame experience on the web that really takes social gaming on the console to the next level. Def Jam isn’t as big over here as in America. What are your expectations for this licence in Europe? Hip hop is huge across the globe, from NYC to London to Japan and all places inbetween, and with the artists and features Def Jam Rapstar contains we have pretty high expectations for the game.
Why start off with a music game? Some say the music genre is in decline, but that seems to be more in the ‘rock’ or ‘alternative’ genres. But there’s yet to be a hip hop game, so how can there be a decline in a genre that doesn’t exist?
©Disney/Pixar. Trademarks are property of their respective owners. Nintendo DSi and Wii are trademarks of Nintendo. “”, “Playstation”, “PS3”, “ ” , and “ ” are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox LIVE, and the Xbox logos are trademarks of the Microsoft group of companies and are used under license from Microsoft. Apple, the Apple logo, iPod, iPod touch, and iTunes are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. iPhone is a trademark of Apple Inc. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc. Product names and/or visuals shown are of product currently in development and may be subject to change.
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New HMV commercial director named Napleton takes over Product as Warren promoted Harrison joins VC group Amiqus Games hires Dekonick HMV STEVE NAPLETON has been promoted to commercial director. He will take responsibility for all areas of Product, including games, as well as retaining his current responsibilities for HMV’s supply chain, customer services, e-commerce, digital and tickets. His promotion follows former commercial director GARY WARREN’s move to newly-created role of managing director of content and talent at HMV’s eventsbased MAMA Group. He will now be responsible for promoting shows and concerts, as well as overseeing
HMV has given new roles to Warren (left) and Napleton (right)
the direct management of the group’s artists. HMV’s CEO SIMON FOX said: “Both appointments are of strategic importance to HMV and potentially of value to our suppliers. in combining HMV Product with e-commerce
and digital, Steve now has the chance to develop a powerful commercial platform that will further support our multichannel aspirations. “Similarly, Gary will be key in bringing our live and retail businesses closer together.”
LONDON VENTURE PARTNERS Following his departure from Atari, PHIL HARRISON has joined London Venture Partners, a new investment group focused on funding ‘disruptive’ game projects. He takes on the role of general partner and will be working alongside former Atari CEO DAVID GARDNER. The two were previously key to an attempt at reinvigorating the Atari brand. Harrison left Atari in May last year. He will now help London Venture Partners to
fund “disruptive new technology in the online, social, mobile and web game space.” AMIQUS KEVIN DEKONICK has joined recruiter Amiqus Games. He joins as a games team resourcer and will primarily support the senior management team with the day-to-day sourcing of developers within various Europe territories. He will also advise clients and candidates on their next career move, and assist with the ongoing upkeep of Amiqus’ new website.
The OPM team is waiting for your call! OPM is an assembly of the most experienced, honest, friendly and proactive professional consultants, each working with their own specialist group of candidates and clients. If you could use a friendly chat with people who understand your industry, then give us a call and we can help with your recruitment needs.
OPM Response Ltd Tel: +44(0)1206 21 44 21 www.opmjobs.com
RETAILBIZ RECOMMENDED GAMES PRICE CHECK CHARTS NEW RELEASES
WITH THIS ISSUE We take an in-depth look at the sequel to Nintendo’s hugely popular Wii adventure Super Mario Galaxy
PSP ESSENTIALS P28 Sony’s re-released range of classic PSP titles offers consumers budget gaming DRAGON BALL ORIGINS 2 P32 The successful cartoon series returns on DS in a new action adventure
HERE COME THE GIRLS Mindscape goes after the casual Wii female audience with P26 the latest instalment in its karaoke franchise
NEW RELEASES P34 MCV provides a comprehensive list of all upcoming releases in the UK HIGH STREET P36 This week we check prices in Portsmouth and talk to Michael Pearce from Game People in Hull
RETAILBIZ: U-SING: GIRLS NIGHT 26 MCV 28/05/10
Mindscape plans a night in with the girls as it grows its Wii karaoke brand U-Sing…
by James Batchelor KARAOKE IS becoming one of many increasingly crowded genres on the Wii, but it’s one that Mindscape is determined to conquer. The company’s offensive began in November with the launch of U-Sing, its fledgling music brand that’s the result of a partnership with Universal Music. Thanks to the game’s appeal, the Wii’s broad audience and some heavy marketing, the game saw a moderate level of success with more than 150,000 units sold in its first eight weeks. Now the two companies take the next step in growing the franchise with the release of U-Sing: Girls Night, a new collection of songs that is perfect for a not-so-quiet evening with the ladies. “U-Sing is very important to both Mindscape and Universal Music and we
are putting our full commitment behind it,” says Mindscape UK’s general manager Mark Stanger. “Based on the stunning success of the first U-Sing game last year, we are extremely optimistic about the potential of Girls Night. It’s the first special edition in the U-Sing franchise, with
There is a big female audience for karaoke titles which Girls Night really addresses directly. Mark Stanger, Mindscape more to follow. We know that there is a big female audience for karaoke titles, so having a 100 per cent dedicated version in Girls Night really addresses that female audience directly.” The publisher has drawn from feedback on the first game and revamped the interface to make it more accessible to players.
Throw in new challenges such as the Golden Notes and a great mix of multiplayer modes, and Girls Night has everything consumers could want from their latest croon-‘em-up. GIRLS ONLINE
Of course, the biggest addition for Girls Night is the launch of the U-Sing Wii Store, a digital service that allows ladies to download new tracks for the game. It’s Mindscape’s first efforts at a digital games service of any kind, and one the company is keen to get right. “It’s very important to Mindscape that we have the ability to offer our user content by every viable means,” says Stanger. “The great thing about the U-Sing digital store is that it adds-value to someone who has bought a physical version of the game, by extending the
RETAILBIZ: U-SING: GIRLS NIGHT WWW.MCVUK.COM
MCV 28/05/10 27
RELEASED: JUNE 18 FORMATS: WII PUBLISHER: MINDSCAPE DEVELOPER: MINDSCAPE PRICE: £29.99 - £49.99 DISTRIBUTOR: GEM CONTACT: 01279 822800
ALL THE LADIES’ SINGLES catalogue, and making those downloaded titles available for life.” The first batch of songs will be made available shortly after Girls Night is released, with more released later in the year with the arrival of more U-Sing titles. New tracks will cost anywhere from 200 to 300 Wii Points each, making them enticing impulse purchases for any wannabe divas that have mastered the already packed tracklist (see ‘All The Ladies’ Singles’). Crucially, all of the songs that will be available through the U-Sing Wii Store will be fully compatible with other titles in the series. WHAT’S LAUNCH GOT TO DO WITH IT
Girls Night will enjoy just as big a launch as the original U-Sing with no less than three SKUs available on day one. Consumers that already own the first game will be able to pick up a standalone copy for £29.99. Meanwhile, anyone yet to buy into the U-Sing brand
will be interested in the two hardware bundles. They can choose from a copy of the game with a single microphone for £39.99, or set themselves up for multiplayer sessions from the get go with the double microphone SKU, retailing at £49.99. Mindscape is working on a major marketing campaign that will not only engage with Girls Night’s target audience but also grow the U-Sing brand in the UK. The company will be running ads across a range of media, including print and online, and will be focusing primarily on women’s lifestyle and mainstream press. The Girls Night campaign will also play up to the inevitably busy World Cup season, with an advertising push encouraging ladies to arrange a night of karaoke while their male friends are out watching the latest football match (see ‘Going For Gold’ on page 18). U-Sing: Girls Night will be released for Wii on June 18th.
U-Sing: Girls Night prides itself on having a tracklist that has been specially put together to appeal to the ladies, with almost 30 popular tunes from leading female artists, including…
Amy Macdonald . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Don’t Tell Me That It’s Over’ Amy Winehouse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Back To Black’ Amy Winehouse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Rehab’ Atomic Kitten . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘The Tide Is High’ Blondie . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Heart Of Glass’ Dionne Bromfield. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Mama Said’ Duffy. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Warwick Avenue’ Girls Aloud . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘The Promise’ Gwen Stefani feat. Akon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘The Sweet Escape’ Jamelia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Superstar’ Joss Stone. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘You Had Me’ Katy Perry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘I Kissed A Girl’ Kim Wilde . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Kids In America’ KT Tunstall . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Suddenly I See’ La Roux . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘In For The Kill’ Lady Gaga feat. Colby O’Donis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Just Dance’ Lily Allen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Smile’ Neneh Cherry . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Woman’ No Doubt . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Don’t Speak’ Noisettes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Don’t Upset The Rhythm’ Pixie Lott . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Mama Do’ Rihanna feat. Jay-Z . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Umbrella’ Sugababes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘About You Now’ T.A.T.U . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘All The Things She Said’ Tina Turner . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘What’s Love Got To Do With It’ The Cardigans . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Lovefool’ The Pussycat Dolls . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Don’t Cha’ The Saturdays . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘Up’ Vanessa Carlton . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ‘A Thousand Miles’
RETAILBIZ: PSP ESSENTIALS 28 MCV 28/05/10
Sony gives the PSP a fresh boost with the summer Essentials range – great titles for under a tenner… SOME OF THE greatest titles the PSP has seen are heading back to shelves in an Essentials range next month. Sony is repackaging key titles and offering them to consumers for less than £10. The first batch – encompassing the best of Sony’s own hits – will arrive on June 4th. More titles will be added to the range in future, including thirdparty hits such as FIFA 09, Burnout Legends, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and Ben 10: Alien Force.
“PSP Essentials is great as it opens a whole range of affordable games and fun,” says product manager Claire Backhouse. “The price points mean that even kids can afford top titles with their pocket money. Sony has drawn up a heavyweight campaign with DPS ads appearing in kids and teen press, including Bliss, Sugar, Mizz, Match, Nitro and Kick, with a range of POS materials for stores. There will also be TV advertising on Channel 4, Sky, ITV 2, Fiver, IDS and E4.
BUZZ! MASTER QUIZ
RELEASED: JUNE 4 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: SONY DEVELOPER: RELENTLESS / CURVE PRICE: £9.99 (RETAIL) / £7.99 (PSN) DISTRIBUTOR: CENTRESOFT CONTACT: 0121 625 3388
RELEASED: JUNE 4 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: SONY DEVELOPER: READY AT DAWN PRICE: £9.99 (RETAIL) / £7.99 (PSN) DISTRIBUTOR: CENTRESOFT CONTACT: 0121 625 3388
RELEASED: JUNE 4 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: SONY DEVELOPER: SCEJ PRICE: £9.99 (RETAIL) / £7.99 (PSN) DISTRIBUTOR: CENTRESOFT CONTACT: 0121 625 3388
RELEASED: JUNE 4 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: SONY DEVELOPER: SCEJ PRICE: £9.99 (RETAIL) / £7.99 (PSN) DISTRIBUTOR: CENTRESOFT CONTACT: 0121 625 3388
The first handheld edition in Sony’s popular trivia series, Master Quiz provides all the tense brain-teasing antics of its console predecessors to gamers on the go. The game features more than 3,000 questions and PSN users will be able to download more.
A spin-off title in the beloved Jak & Daxter series, this sees Jak’s furry sidekick embark on his own adventure. Daxter not only recreates the platforming and combat of the Jak games, it also introduces mini-game parodies to the series.
The handheld port of the 2005 PS2 golfing sim, Everybody’s Golf maintains the series’ vibrant visual style and colourful characters. Golfing fans can choose from a range of gamers, enjoy six courses and play wirelessly with up to eight people.
This endearing platformer is one of the PSP’s most innovative and highly acclaimed releases. Using the shoulder buttons to tilt and bump the world, players guide a singing blob known as a LocoRoco through a variety of artistic but hazardous environments.
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RETAILBIZ: PSP ESSENTIALS WWW.MCVUK.COM
MCV 28/05/10 31
RELEASED: JUNE 4 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: SONY DEVELOPER: SCE CAMBRIDGE STUDIOS PRICE: £9.99 (RETAIL) / £7.99 (PSN) DISTRIBUTOR: CENTRESOFT CONTACT: 0121 625 3388
RELEASED: JUNE 4 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: SONY DEVELOPER: SCEJ PRICE: £9.99 (RETAIL) / £7.99 (PSN) DISTRIBUTOR: CENTRESOFT CONTACT: 0121 625 3388
RELEASED: JUNE 4 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: SONY DEVELOPER: BIGBIG PRICE: £9.99 (RETAIL) / £7.99 (PSN) DISTRIBUTOR: CENTRESOFT CONTACT: 0121 625 3388
Initially a remake of classic PSone adventure MediEvil, Resurrection for the PSP had become its own beast by the time it hit shelves. Players take on the role of the series’ jawless, skeletal protagonist Sir Daniel Fortesque and fight their way through hordes of monsters in the hopes of being recognised as a hero. There are also mini-games.
An odd but acclaimed blend of two unlikely bedfellows: rhythm-action gaming and real-time strategy. Players use rhythmic commands to lead tribal armies through a series of epic battles, all of which is rendered in a vivid style not unlike LocoRoco. Patapon 2 improved the single-player campaign and introduced multiplayer.
Pursuit Force delivers high-octane car chases and vehicle battles as players take on the role of a highly specialised police officer. As gangs run amok, the Pursuit Force brings them to justice by blasting them off the road and jumping from car to car as all good action heroes do. A variety of different vehicles and weapons keep things challenging.
RATCHET: SIZE MATTERS
SECRET AGENT CLANK
RELEASED: JUNE 4 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: SONY DEVELOPER: HIGH IMPACT GAMES PRICE: £9.99 (RETAIL) / £7.99 (PSN) DISTRIBUTOR: CENTRESOFT CONTACT: 0121 625 3388
RELEASED: JUNE 4 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: SONY DEVELOPER: HIGH IMPACT GAMES PRICE: £9.99 (RETAIL) / £7.99 (PSN) DISTRIBUTOR: CENTRESOFT CONTACT: 0121 625 3388
RELEASED: JUNE 4 FORMATS: PSP PUBLISHER: SONY DEVELOPER: SCE LIVERPOOL STUDIOS PRICE: £9.99 (RETAIL) / £7.99 (PSN) DISTRIBUTOR: CENTRESOFT CONTACT: 0121 625 3388
Another first-party platforming duo, Ratchet & Clank made their handheld debut in Size Matters. This sci-fi action adventure introduced new weapons and gadgets, as well as giving a more prominent role to Clank. Players controlled both characters as they searched the galaxy for a kidnapped girl.
The miniature hero steps into the spotlight for his first solo adventure, donning a tuxedo for a spythemed galaxy romp. With plenty of parodies of familiar superspies to enjoy along the way, players help Clank uncover who is behind a conspiracy that saw Ratchet imprisoned for a crime he didn’t commit. Gameplay includes stealth and combat.
Sony’s trademark sci-fi racer debuts on PSP in WipEout Pulse, bringing players the same fastpaced anti-gravity thrills they expect from the series. As with the console versions, lightning fast reactions are required to survive the breakneck speeds and treacherous courses. There are seven single-player and multiplayer modes to enjoy.
RETAILBIZ: DRAGON BALL ORIGINS 2 32 MCV 28/05/10
The popular anime franchise returns to DS as fans get to experience the early adventures of its main character…
by James Batchelor OF ALL THE Japanese anime properties that have managed to capture thousands of UK consumers with their intense battles and impossible haircuts, Dragon Ball is actually the oldest. While it didn’t truly establish a foothold here until the turn of the millennium, riding on the post-Pokémon wave of interest in Japanese cartoons, Dragon Ball first appeared in its home territory in the ‘80s – long before Pikachu and his Pokémon ilk emerged from their Pokéballs. Since then, the franchise has grown beyond its printed manga origins and amassed millions of fans around the globe through anime series and a longrunning chain of video games. With such a large audience established, Namco Bandai brings gamers the chance to explore the early adventures of Dragon Ball’s principal protagonist – Goku. FAMILIAR FACES
RELEASED: JULY 2 FORMATS: DS PUBLISHER: NAMCO BANDAI DEVELOPER: GAME REPUBLIC PRICE: £29.99 DISTRIBUTOR: ADVANTAGE CONTACT: 0121 506 9585
Like its 2008 predecessor, Dragon Ball: Origins 2 is a DS-exclusive outing for the brand and follows the tale of a rather young Goku, as he searches the world for the seven fabled Dragon Balls. Players take on the role of the spikyhaired hero as he encounters the notorious Red Ribbon Army for the first time. The adventure then follows the
story previously laid out by other Dragon Ball properties, from these initial battles against the RRA to the resurrection of Upa’s father, one of the guardians of the mystical Korin Tower. The story isn’t the only thing that stays true to previous Dragon Ball outings. Like the first Origins, this title renders Goku’s escapades in a whimsical anime visual style, with characters just as disproportionate as they are in the cartoon series.
“Dragon Ball has grown beyond its printed origins and amassed millions of fans around the globe.” The cutscenes are even directed in a similar manner to episodes of the anime, and Origins 2 holds true to Dragon Ball’s manga heritage with onomatopoeic words flying out of the ingame battles. Naturally, the Dragon Ball combat has also been faithfully recreated here. All manner of standard and Super Saiyan attacks are at gamers’ disposal, all accessed via either the touch screen or face buttons – giving fans the freedom to play how they want. However, unlike the beat-‘em-up Dragon Ball titles on other consoles, this takes the form of an action adventure
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Along the way, Goku will pick up new friends – including familiar faces such as Krillin, Bulma, Yamcha and more. Each one has their own skills and abilities, all of which must be mastered if players hope to overcome obstacles and bring down the game’s tougher enemies and bosses. The extra characters also open the game for a co-operative multiplayer mode. As players progress through the single-player mode, they open new challenges, missions and bosses that can be tackled with a second player via a wireless connection. They can even use their customised character from the story mode. Given the sheer volume of Dragon Ball fans in the UK, Namco Bandai is sure to draw up a strong marketing campaign to promote Origins 2. The publisher has already confirmed that the game will be playable at the Manga Entertainment stand at this weekend’s MCM Expo in London, engaging directly with the title’s faithful target audience. Dragon Ball: Origins 2 for the DS will hit shelves on July 2nd.
PS3 Bluetooth Headset
360 Online Headset
A step in the right direction
with gamers exploring a variety of colourful environments, discovering hidden treasures and battling hordes of enemies in order to complete their single-player quest.
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JUNE 23RD 2010 SEES THE TRIUMPHANT RETURN OF THE MCV & XBOX 360 GAMES 5S! Including a screening of the England vs Slovenia final group match, along with a BBQ & beers! Registration for this year’s tournament is now closed,
please keep an eye on next week’s edition for the group announcement!
RETAILBIZ: NEW RELEASES 34 MCV 28/05/10
Check out MCVUK.COM/RELEASE-DATES for more
High Street warms up in June The latest instalment of Konami’s Metal Gear Solid series sneaks up on retail, while EA provides a musical interlude with Green Day: Rock Band. Also out soon is Super Mario Galaxy 2, Shrek Forever After, U-Sing: Girls’ Night and more... TITLE
XBOX 360 / PS3 PSP XBOX 360 PSP PSP PC PSP PSP PSP PSP PSP DS PSP PC PC PSP
Action/adventure Casual/social Action/RPG Action Sport Adventure Platformer Action Rhythm Action Action/adventure Casual Platformer Simulation Fighting Racing
Ubisoft Sony Kalypso Media Sony Sony Lace Mamba Global Sony Sony Sony Sony Sony Nintendo Sony Excalibur Publishing Namco Bandai Sony
01279 822800 0121 625 3388 0121 506 9585 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 01273 202220 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 01753 483700 0121 625 3388 01869 338833 0121 506 9585 0121 625 3388
Gem Centresoft Advantage Centresoft Centresoft Lace Centresoft Centresoft Centresoft Centresoft Centresoft Open Centresoft Open Advantage Centresoft
DS PSP Wii Wii / PS3 / XBOX 360 PSP PSP PSP PSP DS XBOX 360 PC PS3 PSP Wii
Platformer Racing Mini-games Music Platformer Platformer Platformer Racing Mystery Action Adventure Platformer Action Platformer
THQ Sony O Games EA Sony Sony Sony Sony THQ 505 Games Ubisoft Sony Sony Nintendo
0121 506 9585 0121 625 3388 01933 442660 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 0121 506 9585 0121 506 9585 01279 822800 0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 01753 483700
Advantage Centresoft OG Int Centresoft Centresoft Centresoft Centresoft Centresoft Advantage Advantage Gem Centresoft Centresoft Open
DS PSP PSP Wii DS / PC / Wii / PS3 / XBOX 360 Wii
Mini-games Sports Action Casual Action/adventure Music
Disney Interactive Sony Konami Namco Bandai Activision Blizzard Mindscape
0121 625 3388 0121 625 3388 0208 987 5706 0121 506 9585 0121 625 3388 01279 822800
Centresoft Centresoft Open Advantage Centresoft Gem
PC PC Wii Wii PS3 PC PC
Casual/Adventure Adventure Mini-games Fitness RPG Adventure RPG
Lace Mamba Global Lace Mamba Global THQ 505 Games Namco Bandai Lace Mamba Global Kalypso Media
01273 202220 0121 506 9585 0121 506 9585 0121 506 9585 0121 506 9585 0121 506 9585 0121 506 9585
Lace Advantage Advantage Advantage Advantage Advantage Advantage
JUNE 4th Assassin's Creed II: Complete Edition Buzz! Master Quiz (PSP Essentials) Dark Star One: Broken Alliance Daxter (PSP Essentials) Everybody's Golf (PSP Essentials) I'm Not Alone LocoRoco (PSP Essentials) Medievil Resurrection (PSP Essentials) Patapon 2 (PSP Essentials) Pursuit Force (PSP Essentials) Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters (PSP Essentials) Rooms: The Main Building Secret Agent Clank (PSP Essentials) Space Shuttle Simulator The Witcher: Enhanded edition (Platinum) WipeOut Pulse (PSP Essentials)
JUNE 11th Beat City Gran Turismo (Platinum) Great Party Games Green Day: Rock Band Jak & Daxter: The Lost Frontier (Platinum) LittleBigPlanet (Platinum) LocoRoco 2 (Platinum) MotorStorm: Arctic Edge (Platinum) Nancy Drew: The Model Mysteries Naval Assault: The Killing Tide Prince Of Persia: The Forgotten Sands Ratchet & Clank: A Crack In Time (Platinum) Resistance: Retribution (Platinum) Super Mario Galaxy 2
JUNE 18th Club Penguin: Elite Penguin Force: Herbert's Revenge Everybody's Tennis Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker Project Runway Shrek: Forever After U-Sing: Girls' Night
JUNE 25th 15 Days A New Beginning Big Beach Sports 2 Daisy Fuente Pilates Demon's Souls Deponia Disciples III: Renaissance
MUSTSTOCK .....................MGS: PEACE WALKER Released: June 18th Format: PSP Publisher: Konami Distributor: Open Contact: 0208 987 5706
The newest outing for Snake comes exclusively to PSP. The action follows on from the events of MGS3: Snake Eater and sees players taking on deadly weapons. Metal Gear is one of gaming’s biggest brands – expect this to be just as big a hit.
MUSTSTOCK ...............GREEN DAY: ROCK BAND Released: June 11th Format: 360, Wii, PS3 Publisher: EA Distributor: Centresoft Contact: 0121 625 3388
Punk icons Green Day are the latest artists to be given the Rock Band treatment in this group-specific iteration of the rhythm action phenomenon. Fans will be able to explore the band’s 21-year rise to glory and rock out to tunes like ‘American Idiot’.
RETAILBIZ: HIGH STREET 36 MCV 28/05/10
POLL WILL EA’S ONLINE PASS DELIVER A SIGNIFICANT BLOW TO THE PRE-OWNED MARKET?
REVIEW SCORES MCV provides the most important average review scores of the last few days – all sourced from Metacritic...
95% PoP: Sands, Wii, Ubisoft
Red Dead Redemption 360, Rockstar
85% 78% 75% 82% Split/Second, PS3, Dinsey
ModNation Racers, PSP, Sony
Skate 3, PS3, EA
Many new EA games include a code which allows the user to access additional online components or DLC packs – including Mass Effect 2, The Sims 3 and Battlefield: Bad Company 2. These ‘Online Passes’ are for one-time use only – and buyers of pre-owned games are required to pay for a new one to access additional content. MCV asked readers whether this will have a negative impact on the pre-owned market.
Over half (60 per cent) think the online codes could deliver a significant blow to the pre-owned space, while 40 per cent believe they won’t take trade away from second-hand sales. EA boss John Riccitiello previously said the online codes will provide a “positive consumer experience with a boatload of more content”. Take part in MCV’s next poll at www.mcvuk.com
*Metacritic scores correct at the time of going to press
INDIE CHARTS - ALL FORMATS 1
LOST PLANET 2 FORMAT: 360
DEVELOPER: CAPCOM PUBLISHER: CAPCOM
ALAN WAKE 360
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP: SOUTH AFRICA PS3
SKATE 3 360
SKATE 3 PS3
LOST PLANET 2 PS3
JUST DANCE Wii
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP: SOUTH AFRICA PS3
BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2 PS3
FOOTBALL MANAGER 2010 PC
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.
The Multi Function Aerobic Step for Wii Fit allows users to increase their workout effectiveness and adds some variety to the fitness experience. It can be used with or without the Balance Board and is ideal for basic step, free steps and advanced techniques. The Aerobic Step can even be elevated to three different heights – three, four or
six inches – and it can be placed horizontally or vertically based on the desired height. Platforms can be securely snapped together to create a range of different positions for various workout levels, while rubber pegs ensure maximum safety and stability. www.ctadigital.com
DEAL OF THE WEEK Amazon is offering an Xbox 360 Arcade console with a free copy of either Halo 3 or Lost Odyssey for £139.99 – giving customers a saving of £39.99. The bundle is ideal for gamers who are looking for a budget pick-me-up pack.
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MCV 28/05/10 37 Sponsored by
PRICE CHECK [PRE ORDERS] Alan Wake 360, Microsoft
Bayonetta 360, Sega
2010 FIFA World Cup PS3, EA
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3D Dot game Heroes PS3, SouthPeak
TOP 10 RED DEAD REDEMPTION: LIMITED EDITION
IN STORE: PORTSMOUTH
2. RED DEAD REDEMPTION
3. RED DEAD REDEMPTION – LIMITED EDITION
4. RED DEAD REDEMPTION
360 ................................................................ROCKSTAR PS3 ................................................................ROCKSTAR PS3 ................................................................ROCKSTAR
5. UNCHARTED 2: PLATINUM
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7. MODNATION RACERS
8. SPLIT/SECOND: VELOCITY
9. LITTLEBIGPLANET 2
10. SUPER MARIO GALAXY 2
WII ................................................................NINTENDO Week ending MAY 21st Source: SHOPTO.COM
FROM THE FRONTLINE On the frontline this week is Michael Pearce from Game People in Hull… What is the biggest challenge your store faces? Competition from the internet, supermarkets and larger retail stores which sell products for cheaper than what they cost at distributors. Independent retailers are up against it at the moment with these hugely discounted new titles. And in the current economic climate, with everyone trying to save every penny, there’s just no way the indies can compete. Service and product knowledge only go so far and when you can buy new titles for £10 to £15 cheaper elsewhere, it’s hard to justify the shelf prices to your regular customers, especially when they think you are buying at the same prices as the supermarkets. Can motion controllers Natal and Move reinvigorate the retail market? From what I’ve seen so far it looks good and certainly is a step in the right direction providing that there are some new and interesting releases to go with it.
TOP 10 THE SIMS 3: AMBITIONS PC, EA 2. UFC UNDISPUTED 2010 + FIGHTS DVD
“Consumers should have the right to sell a product they own and pre-owned buyers shouldn’t be penalised for not buying new.”
3. HALO: REACH – LEGENDARY EDITION
4. UFC UNDISPUTED 2010 + FIGHTS DVD
5. CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS
PS3 ................................................ACTIVISION BLIZZARD
6. HALO: REACH
What do you think about the increasing number of publishers charging pre-owned consumers for online functionality/DLC? It certainly is a hot topic at the moment with good arguments on both sides. From my point of view it’s just another way of milking the titles for more cash. Some of the DLC is justified such as map packs for
Modern Warfare 2, although a little highly priced – other DLC is just silly. I think the main point here is that if the new titles weren’t so expensive there would be no need for pre-owned games. But ultimately the consumer should have the right to sell a product they have bought and pre-owned buyers should not be penalised for not buying new.
7. STARCRAFT II: LIBERTY – LIMITED ED
PC ..................................................ACTIVISION BLIZZARD
8. SUPER MARIO GALAXY 2
9. CALL OF DUTY: BLACK OPS
360 ................................................ACTIVISION BLIZZARD
10. DEMON’S SOULS: BLACK PHANTOM ED
PS3 ........................................................NAMCO BANDAI Week ending MAY 21st Source: AMAZON.CO.UK
38,39 MCV589_FINAL:52-53 MCV572
RETAILBIZ: RETAIL CHARTS 38 MCV 28/05/10
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 HEARTGOLD NINTENDO NEW SUPER MARIO BROS NINTENDO WARIOWARE D.I.Y NINTENDO MARIO KART DS NINTENDO JEWEL QUEST: EMERALD TEAR GSP/AVANQUEST PROFESSOR LAYTON & PANDORA’S BOX NINTENDO MARIO & SONIC: WINTER OLYMPICS NINTENDO PEPPA PIG: FUN AND GAMES P2 GAMES MARIO & LUIGI: BOWSER’S INSIDE STORY NINTENDO
2 4 3 7 5 6 11 9 10
WII THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
[ENTERTAINMENT - ALL PRICES]
DEVELOPER: NINTENDO PUBLISHER: NINTENDO
FORMAT: PS3, 360
DEVELOPER: ROCKSTAR PUBLISHER: ROCKSTAR
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA PS3, PSP, 360, WII
JUST DANCE Wii
WII FIT PLUS Wii
BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2 360, PS3, PC
LOST PLANET 2 360, PS3
ALAN WAKE 360
[FULL PRICE] TITLE
RED DEAD REDEMPTION
SPLIT/SECOND: VELOCITY 360, PS3
POP: THE FORGOTTEN SANDS PS3, 360
MODNATION RACERS PS3, PSP
DISNEY EA CAPCOM MICROSOFT UBISOFT SONY
NEW SUPER MARIO BROS.
COD: MODERN WARFARE 2 360, PS3, PC, DS
DEVELOPER: NINTENDO PUBLISHER: NINTENDO
SKATE 3 360, PS3
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
MARIO KART WII NINTENDO MONSTER HUNTER TRI CAPCOM 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA EA SONIC & SEGA ALL-STARS RACING SEGA F1 2009 CODEMASTERS MARIO & SONIC: WINTER OLYMPICS SEGA RED STEEL 2 UBISOFT SUPER MARIO GALAXY NINTENDO WE SING NORDIC GAMES
WII SPORTS RESORT Wii
GTA: EPISODES FROM LIBERTY CITY PS3, PC, 360 ROCKSTAR
FINAL FANTASY XIII 360, PS3
JUST CAUSE 2 PS3, 360, PC
2 3 4 5 8 6 7 15 12
WII THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
WII FIT PLUS WII SPORTS RESORT EA SPORTS ACTIVE WII PLAY HANNAH MONTANA: THE MOVIE SUPER MONKEY BALL: STOP & ROLL CARS: RACE-O-RAMA MONOPOLY JAMES CAMERON’S AVATAR
SONIC & SEGA ALL-STARS RACING PS3, 360 Wii, DS
SPLINTER CELL: CONVICTION 360, PC
NEW SUPER MARIO BROS WII Wii
FORZA MOTORSPORT 3 360
THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
2 3 6 5 4 9 11 8 7
SEGA UBISOFT NINTENDO MICROSOFT
BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2
FOOTBALL MANAGER 2010
THE SIMS 3
THE SIMS 3: WORLD ADVENTURES
WOW: WRATH OF THE LICH KING
C&C4: TIBERIAN TWILIGHT
SUPREME COMMANDER 2
DAWN OF WAR II: CHAOS RISING
COD: MODERN WARFARE 2
DEVELOPER: UBISOFT (FRANCE) PUBLISHER: UBISOFT
DEVELOPER: EA DICE PUBLISHER: EA SEGA EA EA ACTIVISION BLIZZARD EA SQUARE ENIX 2K GAMES THQ ACTIVISION BLIZZARD
38,39 MCV589_FINAL:52-53 MCV572
RETAILBIZ: RETAIL CHARTS WWW.MCVUK.COM
MCV 28/05/10 39
TAKE-TWO has scored its second No.1 of the year
new racing IP in the Top Ten, with Modnation Racers
with Rockstar’s open world Wild West adventure,
managing tenth place. Sony’s game was released on
Red Dead Redemption. Red Dead is the 11th biggest launch in UK history, and knocks EA’s FIFA World Cup 2010 to No.2 – which had enjoyed a three-week run at the top. Other new games in the charts this week includes Split/Second: Velocity, which reached No.5. Disney’s multiformat game wasn’t the only
PSP and PS3, and the PS3 version performed
THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
Highest New Entry
SUPER STREET FIGHTER IV 360, PS3
POKÉMON SOULSILVER DS
FIFA 10 360, PS3, Wii, PS2, DS, PC, PSP
ALIENS VS PREDATOR 360, PS3, PC
JAMES CAMERON’S AVATAR 360, PS3, Wii, DS, PSP, PC
IRON MAN 2 360, PS3, Wii, DS, PSP
POKÉMON HEARTGOLD DS
BAYONETTA 360, PS3
HALO 3: ODST 360
GRAND THEFT AUTO IV 360, PS3, PC
NEW SUPER MARIO BROS DS
GOD OF WAR COLLECTION PS3
MARIO KART WII Wii
ASSASSIN’S CREED II 360, PS3, PC
MARIO & SONIC: WINTER OLYMPICS WII, DS
BIOSHOCK 2 360, PS3, PC
SONY NINTENDO UBISOFT SEGA 2K GAMES
FOOTBALL MANAGER 2010 PC, PSP
NAPOLEON: TOTAL WAR PC
EA SPORTS ACTIVE WII
NAPOLEON: TOTAL WAR
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
THE SIMS 3: DESIGN & HIGH-TECH STUFF
DEVELOPER: CREATIVE ASSEMBLY PUBLISHER: SEGA
HIDDEN MYSTERIES TRIPLE PACK MYSTERY CASE FILES: DIRE GROVE
ACTIVISION BLIZZARD GSP/AVANQUEST FOCUS
ANCIENT MYSTERIES: KING TUT’S TOMB GSP/AVANQUEST ASSASSIN’S CREED ROME: TOTAL WAR ALIENS VS PREDATOR MYSTERY OF CLEOPATRA
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA MODNATION RACERS SPLIT/SECOND: VELOCITY BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2 PRINCE OF PERSIA: THE FORGOTTEN SANDS LOST PLANET 2 GTA: EPISODES FROM LIBERTY CITY SKATE 3 COD: MODERN WARFARE 2
1 NEW NEW
2 5 6 9
DEVELOPER: XX PUBLISHER: XX EA SONY DISNEY EA UBISOFT CAPCOM ROCKSTAR EA ACTIVISION BLIZZARD
[FULL PRICE] TITLE
UBISOFT GSP/AVANQUEST SEGA GSP/AVANQUEST
2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
MODNATION RACERS LITTLEBIGPLANET GRAN TURISMO ASSASSIN’S CREED: BLOODLINES FIFA 10 FOOTBALL MANAGER 2010 IRON MAN 2 DISSIDIA: FINAL FANTASY BEN 10: ALIEN FORCE: VILGAX ATTACKS
3 2 5 6 8 7 9 RE
DEVELOPER: EA CANADA PUBLISHER: EA
WOW: BATTLE CHEST
RED DEAD REDEMPTION
THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
3 8 2 4 5 12 7 6 11
LEGO BATMAN PC, DS, PS3, 360, Wii, PSP
THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
Also sneaking into the Top Ten is the latest Prince of Persia. The Forgotten Sands debuts in ninth place, and coincided with the launch of Jerry Bruckheimer’s movie, The Sands of Time. Christopher.Dring@intentmedia.co.uk
strongly, even outselling Split/Second on the format.
THIS LAST WEEK WEEK
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
ALAN WAKE 2010 FIFA WORLD CUP SOUTH AFRICA LOST PLANET 2 SPLIT/SECOND: VELOCITY COD: MODERN WARFARE 2 SKATE 3 BATTLEFIELD: BAD COMPANY 2 PRINCE OF PERSIA: THE FORGOTTEN SANDS FORZA MOTORSPORT 3
5 4 6 NEW
SONY SONY SONY UBISOFT EA SEGA SEGA SQUARE ENIX NAMCO BANDAI
RED DEAD REDEMPTION
1 3 2
(c) ELSPA, Compiled by ChartTrack
WEEK ENDING 22/05/10
DEVELOPER: ROCKSTAR PUBLISHER: ROCKSTAR MICROSOFT EA CAPCOM DISNEY ACTIVISION BLIZZARD EA EA UBISOFT MICROSOFT
INTERNATIONAL DISTRIBUTION 40 MCV 28/05/10
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) email@example.com
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: firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone: 0032 81 83 02 07
Email export sales: email@example.com
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 : firstname.lastname@example.org 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: email@example.com
POLAND CD Projekt Sp. z o.o......................................Warsaw
GAME OUTLET EUROPE AB
Phone: +46 54 854750 Fax: +46 54 854759 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.gameoutlet.se
SIBA AB ...................................................Gothenburg
HUNGARY Antec .............................................................Budapest
GOODTONES GREAT GAMES LTD 1 Alkaiou Street / Office 1 /
ICELAND Sena ................................................................Reykavik
TECHLAND Sp. z o.o. ul. Jana Szczyrki 12, 54-426 Wroclaw, Poland E-mail: email@example.com
ABC Software GmbH.......................................Buchs
Web: www.techland.pl Phone: +48 71 354 46 10 Fax: +48 71 354 46 10
TURKEY ARAL Import..................................................Istanbul
Engomi / Nicosia 2404 / Cyprus tel. +357 22 666612
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...
UNITED STATES BASCO, INC. VIDEO GAMES DISTRIBUTOR Tel: 1-917-627-3000
MCV 28/05/10 41
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 JUNE 4th
FRIDAY JUNE 25th
DEVELOP AWARDS FINALISTS
As this year’s Develop Industry Excellence Awards approaches, MCV announces the full list of finalists: every studio in each category, including new awards for Best New Download IP and Best Micro Studio.
Fax: 1-718-228-4401 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.bascodistribution.com
FRIDAY JUNE 11th
E3 2010 SPECIAL
U.S. GAMES DISTRIBUTION, INC. 16700 Schoenborn St. #2 North Hills, CA. 91343 Tel: +1 818 920 9393 email@example.com www.usgamesdist.com
A thorough and comprehensive look back at this year’s E3 Expo, reporting on each and every revelation as well as the – potential impact they will have on the industry, We cover the Big Three’s presentations and the major developments from the leading third-party publishers.
UAE ALESAYI UNITED COMPANY
FRIDAY JULY 2nd
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: firstname.lastname@example.org U.A.E. Website: www.alesayi.ae Group Website: www.alesayi.com
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. Industry roundtables on some of the most topical issues that face gaming and retail.
GUIDE TO GAMES RETAIL The games retail landscape is constantly changing, so we bring you the definitive guide to the major retailers on the market. As well as essential information on each company and a summary of its position in the industry, you’ll find a breakdown of the games buying teams identifying the key personnel and their roles.
FRANCE TERRITORY REPORT
PLUTO GAMES PO Box 10705, Office 103-104 Emirates Islamic Bank Building, Dubai, UAE www.pluto-games.com
FRIDAY JUNE 18th
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
As well as covering all the big E3 headlines, this week’s issue of MCV takes an in-depth look at the biggest challenges facing the always-important distribution sector. We speak to the major players – from pick ‘n’ pack specialists to multi-faceted 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.
France is one of Europe’s biggest video game territories not least because it’s home to publishing giant Ubisoft. MCV takes a closer look at how the country’s video game output is evolving and speak to the key retailers, developers and publishers on the current challenges affecting the region. We also provide a rundown of the country’s headline-grabbing efforts to thwart piracy with its strict laws and regulations.
FOR MORE DETAILS CONTACT: CHRIS.DRING@INTENTMEDIA.CO.UK
TO ADVERTISE CONTACT ROB BAKER ON: 01992 535647 OR
DESIGN STUDIOS Fink. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01480 302352 DISC REPAIR Elm-Digitalia UK . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 0845 643 6021 Total Disc Repair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01202 489 500 DIGITAL DISTRIBUTION Green Man Gaming . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 020 7193 6910 TripleACodes.com . . . . . . . . . . . . . email@example.com DISTRIBUTION Creative Distribution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 020 8664 3456 Curveball Leisure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01792 652562 Discstribution. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . +44 (0) 845 430 8735 Gem . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01279 822800 GLS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01708 725742 Ideal Software . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01767 689720 Meroncourt . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01462 680060 Universal Games Distribution (UK) Ltd . . 0208 787 7030 USD Limited . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01933 227220 GAMING ACCESSORIES Logic3 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01923 471 000 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 STORE FITTINGS AMA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 0113 2311030 DISTRIBUTION
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
DISCSTRIBUTION . . . . . . . +44 (0)845 430 8735 . . . . . . . . . www.discstribution.com
PINPOINT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 01606 558428 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . www.pinpointce.co.uk
ROB.BAKER@INTENTMEDIA.CO.UK DISC REPAIR
ELM-DIGITALIA UK. . . . . . . . . 0845 6436021 . . . . . . . . . . . . . www.elmdigitalia.co.uk
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
TO ADVERTISE CONTACT ROB BAKER ON: 01992 535647 OR GAMING ACCESSORIES
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
ROB.BAKER@INTENTMEDIA.CO.UK DIGITAL DISTRIBUTION
Now is a great time to expand your digital business Distributors of CDkey, Epin and downloadable products.
DESIGN I DIGITAL I LITHO
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 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 GAME HERO Saturday, July 10th The Metrocentre, Gateshead www.gatesheaddigitalsummer.com/ game-hero.php 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
TOTAL DISC REPAIR. . . . . . . . . . 01202 489500 . . . . . . . . . www.totaldiscrepair.co.uk
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.
’s 360 x o Xb . d n .. V a astle M c H ty, sand r a p te nch labora u a l lur ther e B ra he e t nd a v a a h we l day, , k l ee ba s w foot i h T rity cha
It’s almost rude not to know someone who once worked there. This week, we start with...
Sean Brennan is the current European boss of Bethesda, creators of Oblivion, which featured…
Sean Bean, who in another fantasy universe attempted to swipe The One Ring from a digitally shortened…
Elijah Wood, star of Deep Impact, Lord Of The Rings and Sin City, which also featured the little-known…
IT’S ALL A BLUR Or at least many people’s vision was in the morning. Activision Blizzard held a launch party for its power-up racer Blur last week, invlting a myriad of industry members to enjoy a night of live music from Plan B and the chance to get to grips with the game themselves. The Xbox 360 version was on hand to give attendees a taste of the multiplayer mode – well, it beats a night on the sofa watching Come Dine With Me.
Devon Aoki, whose biggest role was in the Holly Vallance-headed Dead Or Alive flick as…
Kasumi, one of the many buxom ladies featured in Tecmo Koei’s fighting/ogling series, a franchise handled in the UK by…
Ben Lawrence, who (before moving to TK Europe) used to work at… ACTIVISION
SEND YOUR PICTURES TO JAMES.BATCHELOR@INTENTMEDIA.CO.UK EDITORIAL: 01992 535646 Managing Editor: Lisa Foster Lisa.Foster@intentmedia.co.uk Editor-In-Chief: Michael French Michael.French@intentmedia.co.uk Deputy Editor: Christopher Dring Chris.Dring@intentmedia.co.uk Staff Writer: James Batchelor James.Batchelor@intentmedia.co.uk Staff Writer: Dominic Sacco Dominic.Sacco@intentmedia.co.uk
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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.
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ISSN: 1469-4832 Copyright 2010
MCV has an exclusive media partnership with Famitsu - Japan’s leading video games analyst and news source
MCV 28/05/10 49
WHITE BALL OF DE
ATH Xbox 360, EA Sports and HMV joined forces for a charity football day to promo te 2010 FIFA World Cup . Teams from Activision, Disney, Koch, Microsoft, Nintendo, Son y, Universal, Warner and more manag ed to raise £14,554.89 (they were very exact) for cancer charity CLIC Sargent.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“I think we can name a company that is a fruit that is in the news a lot about their arrogance.” SCE Australia’s MD Michael Ephraim oh-so-subtly digs at Apple when asked about Sony’s past attitude
KING OF THE (SAN
D)CASTLE British sand sculptor Pau l Hoggard created a 12ft sand sculpture of the Prince of Persia near Marble Arch. It was made fro m 16 tons of white san d and over 1000 litres of wat er. It took five days and two assistants to finish. And you can bet that some kid came and crushed it onc e finished, then built a bigger one nearby. Well, you’d have to, wouldn’t you?
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
SU PE FI R VE M C A OP RI I O ES GA O LA F XY
COMPETITION We’ve got five copies of Super Mario Galaxy 2 for one lucky retailer. To be in with a chance of winning, simply answer the following question:
What’s the name of Mario’s faithful dinosaur companion who plays a starring role in Galaxy 2?
A) Yoshi B) Toshi C) Squashi Send your answer to firstname.lastname@example.org
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The market for computer and video games