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THE BUSINESS OF VIDEO GAMES ISSUE 860 FRIDAY DECEMBER 11TH 2015

THE A TEAM DEBBIE BESTWICK TAKES US THROUGH 25 YEARS OF TEAM17 P18

UK RETAIL SPEAKS OUT 70%

55%

believe PS4 will rule next year

think virtual reality is doomed

41%

19%

picked Uncharted 4 as their most anticipated game of 2016

demand more titles in 2016

60%

hail Fallout 4 as 2015’s Game of the Year

READ THE FULL RESULTS OF MCV’S 2015 ANNUAL RETAIL SURVEY ON PAGE 5


NEWS

Publishers bemoan Black Friday bundle ‘lunacy’ 70 per cent of hardware sales during Black Friday week were ‘hard bundles,’ says GfK Chart-Track by Christopher Dring LEADING UK games publishers says the ‘obsession’ around PS4 and Xbox One bundles over Black Friday will harm game sales. According to GfK Chart-Track, around 70 per cent of consoles sold during the Black Friday week were ‘hard bundles’ (official bundles that feature games in the pack), and that figure doesn’t include ‘soft bundles’ (unofficial ones which retailers created themselves). It’s ten per cent higher than during the previous year. The Uncharted PS4 and FIFA 16 Xbox One were the most popular tie-ins. Top games publishers told MCV this week says that these big bundles mean consumers do

not have a reason to buy any further games. “All the discounts were on bundles,” the UK MD of one giant publisher told MCV. “It was lunacy. There were two, three, even four releases given away with each machine for next to nothing. Gamers won’t need to buy anything else for months.” A sales director at another global firm

added that one of his games is struggling in the face of a bundled competitor. “We feel we have the better game, but why buy it when they’ve already got a perfectly good alternative in the same genre? There’s an obsession

The market share of official game bundles was ten per cent higher in this year’s Black Friday than 2014’s

Insomnia Festivals set for Ireland and Scotland

Newly independent Just Flight targets development growth RESCUED flight and train simulation specialists Just Flight is looking to bolster its in-house development team. The firm was part of recently closed games publisher Mastertronic, but was able to attract new investment and emerge as its own business. “We’re talking to all our partners to give them the good news and reassure them it’s business as usual,” said Just Flight’s operations director, Dermot Stapleton. “Just Flight and Just Trains are both strong and established brands with large fan bases. We were able to convince a new

December 11th 2015

with giving away content for cheap to sell hardware, when surely it should be the other way around.” This isn’t the first time aggressive bundling has been called out by publishers. Back in February, games retailers said that an over-reliance on bundling during Q4 was harming further purchasing.

investor of the potential in the flight and train simulation market and of Just Flight’s ability to be a successful player.” The firm is looking to boost its development capabilities, and plans to expand the number of sim platforms it supports. “We will be focusing on developing more high-end flight and train titles in-house,” continued Stapleton. “Our priority is increasing our in-house team’s capacity and developing exciting aircraft and trains that our fans have been demanding. We also want to continue working with amazing flight sim devs and publishers.”

GAME and Multiplay’s Insomnia consumer shows will visit Scotland and Ireland next year. The eSports events have already expended beyond the Coventry Ricoh Arena and moved to Birmingham NEC. Insomnia Scotland will take place between April 29th and May 1st at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre. It will host 14,000 fans, making it Scotland’s largest gaming event. It will feature the usual combination of eSports tournaments, plus games demonstrations from triple-A publishers and indies.

02

Insomnia Ireland will take place between June 10th and June 12th at the Killarney Convention Centre, and will hold 5,000 consumers. “We’re excited to unveil our international plans, and these Scottish and Irish festivals are just the start of our commitment to Insomnia fans the world over,” said Craig Fletcher, founder and CEO of organiser Multiplay. “With the support of a vibrant community from the US and throughout Europe, we’ll continue to grow our festivals to reach as many of our incredible fans in the future.”

www.mcvuk.com


NEWS

THE EDITOR

Industry veteran John Kavanagh returns to games at Pixelbomb by Christopher Dring FORMER Eidos chief John Kavanagh has joined rising games developer/publisher Pixelbomb Games. The studio is working on PC, PS4 and Xbox One game Beyond Flesh & Blood. Kavanagh’s appointment as MD comes as the firm attempts to become a major UK digital publisher. “I’m truly excited to be joining Pixelbomb, a unique studio which lives and breathes its Manchester heritage,“ said Kavanagh. “Pixelbomb has such diverse talent at its disposal. I’m very pleased to be leading this studio and am both proud and eager to help shape its future and its games.”

He continued: “We are growing our team and forming partnerships as part of our aim to be a digital publishing hub as well as a well-known home for games development in the UK. “Pixelbomb is bolstered by over 50 years experience across the whole team, so the studio is primed for integrated success as a developer and digital publisher.” Kavanagh says the firm hopes to become a big player in PC, console, mobile and VR. His experience includes roles such as publisher and VP of development at Eidos, president of Ion Storm and Crystal Dynamics, President of Kuju America and senior VP of games for Paramount Pictures.

SMART RETAILING BEAT AWAY BLACK FRIDAY BLUES. ALMOST

T

hat wasn’t so bad, was it? 2014’s Black Friday was a price bloodbath; games were cut to eyewatering levels as the industry was taken unawares by the once US-only sales event. 2015, things were smarter. High Street sales were lower than anticipated, a few online stores fell over – we didn’t get our Chart-Track figures until far too late. But these were niggles in what was an otherwise very successful weekend. Prices were dropped only slightly on many of the big November games, whereas the hefty cuts were reserved for catalogue products or 360 SKUs of games such as Call of Duty. It was a more intelligent approach than the mad axe-antics of last year. That’s not quite true of the hardware space. Sony and Microsoft both went into Black Friday with aggression. Sony had secured some ‘refurbished’ PS4 stock, cutting £100 off its RRP. You could pick an Xbox One up with a couple of games for as low as £220. The result was over 300,000 consoles sold over Black Friday week. It was wonderful for install base, not necessarily to anyone’s bottom line. Nor, indeed, is it proving to be the boost to the software market everyone had hoped. Publishers told us that the number of bundles on offer at retail is damaging sales. There’s a logic to that – if a gamer picked up an Xbox One with Halo 5 and Fallout 4, will they need to pick up Call of Duty

Eidos and Crystal Dynamics alumnus Kavanagh has joined indie Pixelbomb

SPONSORED BY

PRE-ORDER TOP 10

1

DARK SOULS III - COLLECTOR’S EDITION (PS4)

2

Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End (PS4)

3

Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth (PS4)

4

Far Cry Primal (PS4)

5

The Division (XO)

6

Resident Evil Origins Collection (PS4)

BANDAI NAMCO

Sony Bandai Namco Ubisoft Ubisoft Capcom Bandai Namco

7

Dark Souls III (PS4)

8

Final Fantasy Explorer (3DS)

Square Enix

9

Final Fantasy VII Remake (PS4)

Square Enix

10

Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End Special Edition (PS4)

www.mcvuk.com

Sony

03

Perhaps the opening of 2016 will show that good games can sell at any time. or Star Wars or Tomb Raider? Looking at the size of these titles, they’ll not need another game until at least February. Which brings me onto our retail survey. Once again, the concentration of games around Christmas is criticised by stores. It’s not just about spreading the money out throughout the year, but also to give people time to actually play the games. Black Ops III, Battlefront, Rainbow Six: Siege, Halo 5... huge, vast, deep first person shooters that can last for months and months. So why release them so close? The good news is that 2016 starts strong. LEGO Avengers, Street Fighter V, The Division, XCOM 2, Uncharted 4, Far Cry Primal, Dark Souls III, Zelda, Star Fox, Doom, Hitman, Dishonored 2, No Man’s Sky, Mirror’s Edge 2, VR... and that’s just the first half. That line-up may have been more by accident than design, but perhaps the opening to 2016 will show the market that good games can sell at any time. Of course, before we get to 2016, there are the last few weeks of the year, with plenty of wonderful games to sell and some half a million new PS4 and Xbox One owners to sell them to. Good luck. If we don’t see you before, have a merry Christmas. cdring@nbmedia.com

December 11th 2015


RETAIL SURVEY

ANNUAL RETAIL SURVEY

Street talk MCV has spoken to well over 130 indie and big chain games retailers about the highs and lows of 2015

WHO DID WE SPEAK TO? THIS year, MCV spoke to well over 130 stores, including: 24/7 Games, Backyard Games, Barkman Computers, Bits n Pieces, Chips, Console Connection, Discover, Eclipse Home Entertainment, Ego, Excite Games, GAME, Games Connection, Game Dojo, GameOn, Gamepad, Game X Change, Games Centre, GamesNation, Grainger Games, HMV, Insane Games, Joypad Games, Playnation, Seedee Johns, Seventh Heaven, Stan’s Games Exchange, Stark Gaming and Computers, Super Games World, That Game Shop, Video Gaming 247 and Wayne’s Movies and Games.

WHICH GAMES PUBLISHER BEST SUPPORTED YOUR BUSINESS IN 2015? Q Microsoft Q Bethesda Q Sony Q Ubisoft Q Activision Q EA Q Warner Bros Q None Q Nintendo Q Square Enix Q Excalibur

31% 26% 12% 12% 8% 6% 2% 2% 1% 1% 1%

FOR the second year running, Microsoft has been crowned the UK’s best games publisher by retailers. In 2014, the platform holder saw 26 per cent of the vote, but this year the Xbox firm was put forward by 31 per cent of retailers asked. The company was praised for its strong first-party line-up. However, if you just factor in indie stores, Sony would have come out on top.

www.mcvuk.com

0% 05

05%

10%

15%

20%

25%

30%

35%

December 11th 2015

40%


RETAIL SURVEY

WHICH GAMES PLATFORM DO YOU FEEL WILL RULE 2016?

FOR the third year running, PlayStation 4 is predicted to be the dominant machine in the coming year. The hardware took 70 per cent of the vote, up hugely from last year’s 55 per cent. Stores called out games such as Uncharted 4, The Last Guardian, Horizon: Zero Dawn and No Man’s Sky as big PlayStation 4 exclusives, plus the return of Final Fantasy VII and the launch of PlayStation VR.

In last year’s survey, UK retail predicted that the Xbox One would be the dominant platform in 2015 with 41 per cent of the vote thanks to a strong line-up including Halo 5 and Rise of the Tomb Raider. This year, only 27 per cent of store managers said that the platform would be No.1 in 2016.

Q PlayStation 4 Q Xbox One Q PC Q Nintendo NX

70% 27% 2% 1%

WHAT ARE YOUR EXPECTATIONS AROUND VIRTUAL REALITY IN 2016?

HOW IMPORTANT IS EXCLUSIVE CONTENT AND/ OR PRE-ORDER BONUSES TO YOUR STORE?

EXCLUSIVE content and preorder incentives continue to be an incredibly important issue for UK games retailers. Many independent stores said that this content was what made or broke a sale in some instances. Some said that exclusive content and pre-order incentives should be offered to all games stores to create an even playing field. A number of indie retailers said that they were unhappy with the level of pre-order bonuses and

December 11th 2015

AT long last, VR is going to be hitting stores in 2016, but UK games retail is reticent. 55 per cent of the stores MCV spoke to said that the fancy new tech will not be a hit in 2016, with many saying that they feel it is a fad akin to 3D television However, 39 per cent of retailers said that they thought it would succeed, but only if companies like Oculus, PlayStation and HTC put the proper effort into marketing the tech and making sure that people

exclusive content offered to them by publishers and distributors when compared to the chains. Indies pointed to GAME exclusively selling the Nuketown map for Call of Duty: Black Ops III as an example of the chains having too much of an advantage, with many saying they lost sales due to this.

Q Very important Q Neither important or

74%

unimportant Q Not important

19% 7%

06

get hands on with it. Even then, they said that publishers need to support it with a strong line-up of content. And five per cent said they simply do not know. Those who were unsure told MCV that the tech is so new that there is no way of knowing just how well it will do when it finally comes out.

Q Fail Q Succeed Q Not Sure

55% 39% 5%

www.mcvuk.com


RETAIL SURVEY

WHAT TYPE OF PRODUCT - BE IT A GAME, ACCESSORY OR HARDWARE – WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE MORE OF IN 2016?

WHAT GAME ARE YOU MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO IN 2016?

07

1% MASS EFFECT ANDROMEDA

HALO WARS 2

1%

1% MASS EFFECT ANDROMEDA

1% SCALEBOUND

CALL OF DUTY 1%

1% BORDERLANDS 3

DYING LIGHT: THE FOLLOWING 1%

HOMEFRONT: THE REVOLUTION 1%

MIRROR’S EDGE CATALYST 1%

DOOM 1%

FAR CRY PRIMAL 1%

RATCHET AND CLANK 1%

THE LEGEND OF ZELDA WII U 2%

HITMAN 2%

2% FINAL FANTASY XV

MAFIA 3 2%

NO MAN’S SKY 3%

HORIZON: ZERO DAWN 3%

STREET FIGHTER V 3%

QUANTUM BREAK 3%

FINAL FANTASY VII REMAKE 3%

4% GEARS OF WAR 4

DARK SOULS III 6%

THE DIVISION 11%

UNCHARTED 4: A THIEF’S END 41% www.mcvuk.com

RESIDENT EVIL ORIGINS COLLECTION 1%

Meanwhile, hardcore RPG Dark Souls III was voted for by six per cent of stores, citing strong 2015 sales of Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin and Bloodborne, which were made by the same studio – From Software. The new title is out on April 12th. Only 18 per cent of games retailers voted for new IP – down on the 30 per cent of stores who voted for new franchises last year. And only one Nintendo title made the cut this year – The Legend of Zelda game set for release on Wii U sometime in 2016.

NEARLY half of games store managers are most looking forward to the latest entry in Sony’s Uncharted series in 2016. 41 per cent of UK games retailers say that Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End is their most anticipated title. Sony’s game was initially set for a Q4 2015 release, but it is now coming to shelves on March 18th, 2016. In second place is Ubisoft’s online shooter The Division, which claimed 11 per cent of the vote. That game is coming out on March 8th.

December 11th 2015

CHARGERS FOR WIRELESS CONTROLLERS

MAGAZINES

1%

1% EXTERNAL STORAGE FOR XBOX ONE

1% LEGEND OF ZELDA GAMES

1% XBOX ONE SLIM

1% HEADSETS

PHYSCIAL INDIE GAMES

1% PHYSICAL PC GAMES

1% WII U PRICE CUT

1%

2% STREET FIGHTER V

ANOTHER GTA

2% SPECIAL EDITIONS

FINISHED GAMES

AMIIBO 2%

3% RPGS

KIDS GAMES

3%

CONSOLE BUNDLES

2%

3%

1%

4% GAMES MERCHANDISE

5% PC ACCERSSORIES

NINTENDO NX 10%

12% NEW IPS

CONSOLE ACCESSORIES

14% VR

MORE GAMES 19%

12%

1%

THE biggest demand from UK games retailers is to have more releases next year. 19 per cent of the stores MCV spoke to said that they wanted a busier release schedule, saying that there were too many dry periods with nothing of note hitting shelves in 2015. Meanwhile, 14 per cent of UK outlets said that they wanted to see more VR products next year. Ten per cent said they wanted to see Nintendo’s new NX console – due for announcement in 2016 And while many proclaim that ‘print is dead’, one per cent of UK games retailers say they want to see more games magazines next year.


RETAIL SURVEY

IF YES, ARE YOU HAPPY WITH THE LEVEL OF DIGITAL CONTENT AVAILABLE TO YOU?

DO YOU SELL DIGITAL CONTENT?

Q Yes Q No

Q Yes Q No

96% 4%

IF NO, WOULD YOU BE INTERESTED IN SELLING DIGITAL CONTENT?

Q Yes Q No

84% 15%

Whether or not retail said they were happy or not, there was demand across the board for more content from Xbox, with stores saying that though the platform holder has made progress, it needs to match the PlayStation and Nintendo ranges offered by DLCSoft. In addition, indie retailers said they were after a range of digital stock from Steam and iTunes.

96 per cent of UK games retail stocks digital content – an increase of three per cent year-on-year. Of that 96 per cent, 84 per cent were happy with the level of stock available to them, citing initiatives from CentreSoft and Exertis. 15 per cent said they weren’t happy with the level of digital content open to them.

Did you participate in Black Friday this year?

If no, would you take part in Black Friday next year?

89% YES

31% YES

If yes, do you feel the sales event is a good thing for your business?

65% YES

December 11th 2015

75% 25%

08

DESPITE Black Friday being listed as the biggest challenge facing UK games retail in MCV’s 2014 Annual Retail Survey, 89 per cent of stores took part in the retail event this year. Of that figure, 65 per cent said that the retail event was a good thing. The reasons cited were a massive increase in footfall and sales. Many indie retailers praised the deals offered to them by their distribution partners, with some stocking more than they needed purely because the offers were of such good value. 35 per cent of participants said that the retail event was a bad thing, with consumers voicing dissatisfaction at the already reduced prices and expecting products to be even lower in cost. www.mcvuk.com


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RETAIL SURVEY

IN TERMS OF SUCCESS, WHAT WAS YOUR GAME OF 2015?

01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13

FALLOUT 4 62%

TITLE The Witcher III: Wild Hunt FIFA 16 Call of Duty: Black Ops III Batman: Arkham Knight Goat Simulator Grand Theft Auto V LEGO Dimensions Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain Minecraft: Story Mode Mortal Kombat X Rare Replay Rugby League Live 3

POPULARITY 10% 9% 8% 1% 1% 1% 1% 1% 1% 1% 1% 1%

PRIOR to doing the retail survey, MCV suspected that Fallout 4 would be a strong candidate for UK games retail’s best performing title of the year due to its strong initial sales, cult following and critical acclaim. But we had no idea that Bethesda’s action RPG would in fact take the No.1 spot with 62 per cent of the vote. The post-apocalyptic game has a 52 per cent lead on second place, which went to the also eagerly-awaited and critically acclaimed RPG The Witcher III: Wild Hunt from CD Projekt RED. That title was put forward by ten per cent of store managers from UK games

retail. Last year, FIFA took the top spot with 29 per cent of store managers voting for EA’s football title. This year’s FIFA scored nine per cent, ahead of Call of Duty: Black Ops III.

WHICH PERIPHERALS MANUFACTURER WOULD YOU CREDIT FOR BEST QUALITY THIS YEAR?

30

Q Turtle Beach Q Xbox Q PlayStation Q PDP Q Razer Q Gioteck Q Orb Q Numskull Q Astro Gaming Q Mad Catz Q Keep Out Gaming Q Kontrol Freak Q Power A Q Steel Series Q Triton Q Venom

25 20 15 10 05 00

Meanwhile, Xbox and PlayStation were both credited for the buildquality of their peripherals. The platform holders claimed 19 and 13 per cent of the vote respectively. The same was said of PDP for its Afterglow range of products, put forward by 11 per cent of stores that MCV spoke to. Sony, Xbox and PDP were all highly popular with the indie retailers that MCV spoke to, as was Orb.

HEADSETS continue to be popular in the accessories market, and retailers praise Turtle Beach as the top manufacturer. The headset specialist took the No.1 spot last year with 27 per cent of stores naming the company as the accessories brand with highest-quality. The firm has managed a one per cent rise year-on-year, claiming 28 per cent of votes in 2015, despite losing its tie-up with Call of Duty (instead partnering with Star Wars Battlefront).

December 11th 2015

28% 19% 13% 11% 6% 4% 4% 3% 2% 2% 1% 1% 1% 1% 1% 1%

10

www.mcvuk.com


RETAIL SURVEY

WHICH DISTRIBUTOR BEST SUPPORTED YOUR BUSINESS IN 2015? (INDIE-ONLY)

CENTRESOFT is still the top distributor for UK games retailers, this year claiming 84 per cent of the vote. This is an eight per cent increase on the 76 per cent of retailers who proclaimed CentreSoft the best distributor last year. The firm was praised for its constant support of indie retail, this year has included bundles at decent prices, constant pointof-sale materials to help stores sell games and its DLCSoft digital download system.

Q CentreSoft Q Creative Distribution Q Contact Sales Q Exertis Q Keyne Distribution Q Link Distribution

ARE YOU PRE-ORDERS UP, DOWN OR ABOUT THE SAME IN 2015? (INDIE-ONLY)

THINGS are not looking good for the pre-order market in the UK games industry. 45 per cent of stores said that they had seen a dip in preorders this year when compared with 2014, while 31 per cent said that the number of consumers pre-purchasing games was roughly the same year-on-year. And only 23 per cent of stores said that pre-orders had increased over 2014.

84% 5% 3% 3% 3% 3%

One thing that was apparent from speaking to UK retail was that those pre-ordering games were doing so much later in the day than in prior years. Stores said this was due to the spate of buggy games releases, meaning that consumers were waiting until review embargoes or Let’s Play videos before spending money.

Q Down Q Same Q Up

45% 31% 23%

WHAT WAS YOUR STORE’S BIGGEST CHALLENGE THIS YEAR? (INDIE-ONLY)

60

Q Online Competition Q Distributor Support Q Diversification Q Trade Prices Q Local Competition Q Shelf Space Q Banks not lending to indie retailers Q Black Friday Q Drop in pre-owned sales Q Exclusive Content Q Flooding Q Games being buggy Q Getting consumers to pre-order Q Meeting consumer demand Q Quiet Summer

50 40 30 20 10 00 THIS year, the biggest challenge facing UK indie games retail was competition from online outlets. 41 per cent of the stores MCV spoke to said that they simply could not beat the low prices offered by the likes of Amazon, as they were already higher than the trade prices that indie retailers pay. Trade prices was the primary frustration of eight per cent of store managers we surveyed.

www.mcvuk.com

41% 8% 8% 8% 5% 5% 3% 3% 3% 3% 3% 3% 3% 3% 3%

Meanwhile, another eight per cent of stores said that they weren’t being given adequate support from their distributors, saying that in some instances they rarely heard from their account managers. Local competition was a concern for five per cent of outlets. The same portion of stores said that they were having issues with shelf space due to toys-to-life games like Skylanders, LEGO Dimensions and Disney Infinity, alongside Nintendo’s Amiibo figures.

11

December 11th 2015


CHEAT SHEET

UP & DOWN

Market Data Software revenue falls a mere ten per cent for the week following Black Friday

£60m £15m

£30m £30m

£42.4m 1,111,438 units

Week Ending November 21st

£56m 1,778,852 units

Week Ending November 28th

FIFA 16 holds the top spot for the sixth week running despite sales falling 41 per cent

£50.5m 1,584,636 units

SALES OF Minecraft: Story Mode rose 16 per cent weekon-week as it holds seventh place

Week Ending December 5th

EVENT CALENDAR DECEMBER 2015 .................................................................................. INSOMNIA 56 The NEC, Birmingham, UK Friday, December 11th - Monday, December 14th Q Pro-gaming event moves to Birmingham’s NEC for the first time Q Features LAN gaming areas, Q&A sessions, eSports tournaments and an exhibition hall

London Thursday, February 25th Q UK industry veterans including Ian Livingstone, UKIE’s Dr Jo Twist, Richard Wilson of TIGA and Rebellion’s Jason Kingsley discuss what the industry’s priorities are for government policy going forward. Livingstone and Chris White MP will chair affairs

MARCH 2016 ..................................................................................

JANUARY 2016 .................................................................................. POCKET GAMER CONNECTS 2015 The Brewery, London Monday, January 18th – Tuesday, January 19th Q Pocket Gamer’s two-day conference includes over 120 speakers Q Featuring speakers from Google, London Venture Partners, State of Play, Amazon and Unity

FEBRUARY 2016 .................................................................................. THE UK VIDEO GAMES INDUSTRY: TECHNOLOGY, POLICY PRIORITIES AND NEW AVENUES FOR GROWTH

December 11th 2015

12

MCV AWARDS 2016 Hilton Bankside, London Thursday, March 3rd 2016 Q Celebrating the best that the UK games industry has to offer Q Two categories make a return – Mainstream Retail and Events Team Q New venue at the Hilton Bankside Q Lobbying open, closes on Wednesday, December 16th GAME DEVELOPERS CONFERENCE 2016 Moscone Center, San Francisco, US Monday, March 14th – Friday, March 18th Q The world’s largest development-focused event with over 26,000 attendees and 400 lectures Q Speakers include Ubisoft, EA, Facebook and King

www.mcvuk.com


CHEAT SHEET

PRESENTS

5 SECOND FACTS

THE NEWS IN 140 CHARACTERS The Tweets you might have missed in the last seven days

Your shortcut to sounding clever in the pub, we take you around the industry in under 30 seconds

PS2 GAMES NOW AVAILABLE ON PS4

$2m

Sony has released eight PlayStation 2 games for the PS4. The platform holder has made eight older titles available for its new hardware, complete with new features like Remote Play. The firm is charging £11.99 for six of these titles, with the other two setting gamers back £7.99.

The prize pool for the upcoming Halo World Championship has risen to $2m thanks to Halo 5 microtransactions

$1.7m @VGTomO Is this PS2 emulation pricing for PS4 the first proper sign of arrogant Sony so far this generation? Can’t imagine they’d try this if in second place. Tom Orry, Videogamer Friday, December 4th

@notaxation Sony is giving PS4 players PS2 games with Trophies for $10-$15 and people still complain. Because they’ll complain about literally anything. Colin Moriarty, Kinda Funny Saturday, December 5th

KONAMI BLOCKED HIDEO KOJIMA FROM ATTENDING THE GAME AWARDS Hideo Kojima was blocked from accepting the best action/adventure game prize at The Game Awards for MGSV by Konami, the organisers said.

FINAL FANTASY VII REMAKE TO BE EPISODIC Publisher Square Enix has announced that its upcoming Final Fantasy VII Remake would be ‘told across a multi-part series, with each entry providing its own unique experience’.

@LaurakBuzz At this point it feels like Konami are just being petty on principle, and doing themselves considerable PR harm in the process.

@PatrickDane Fans really are freaking out about Final Fantasy VII being episodic. Silly. This is probably the only way you see the game before 2020.

Laura Kate Dale, Destructoid UK Friday, December 4th

Patrick Dane, Bleeding Cool Monday, December 7th

@tamoorh Konami: Kojima wasn’t able to attend The Game Awards because, as we already said, HE’S. ON. HOLIDAY. OKAY?

@WalnutSoap Final Fantasy VII is super linear. It makes total sense to make it episodic.

Tamoor Hussain, GameSpot UK Friday, December 4th

Paul Watson, Gamer Network Monday, December 7th

Mino Games’ second title Mino Monsters 2 earned $1.7m in its first month on the App Store and Google Play

5/2 William Hill has slashed the odds of Star Wars Battlefront being the UK’s No.1 game at Christmas to 5/2, behind Call of Duty

60 Microsoft has cut 60 jobs from its Israeli HoloLens team

$2m Double Fine has already raised over $2m on crowdfunding platform Fig for Psychonauts 2 ANKA Headset - PDP Design and manufacture the Officially licensed Microsoft – fully Wireless Headset for Xbox ONE

europesales@pdp.com

www.pdp.com

GAMESAID THIS WEEK .................................................... PLAY YOUR PART BECOME A MEMBER AMBASSADOR  TRUSTEE WWW.GAMESAID.ORG

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JOIN GAMESAID TODAY

GLOWBEAR’S 8BIT HIKE

GAMES ON SONG 2015

..................

..................

..................

Want to join the UK games industry charity and decide which organisations should recieve donations? Signing up is entirely free of charge, and if you are interested you can do so at: www.gamesaid.org/ join-us

Claire Sh, also known as Glowbear, is walking and climbing Mt Muckish in Ireland this December. It’s Claire’s second ‘8bit Hike’, although this one will be a bit chillier due to its Winter timing. Vist www.justgiving. com/glowbear to donate.

Hark, the herald angels sing: Games on Song is back. The games industry Christmas choir will perform at St Stephen’s Church in London on December 16th. Stay up-to-date and get involved at www.facebook .com/GamesOnSong

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December 11th 2015


MARKET MOVES

APPOINTMENTS

MCV staff writer joins Develop Jarvis promoted to senior staff writer OTestronic hires industry vets ONew QA team member for Curve DEVELOP | MCV’s staff writer MATTHEW JARVIS has departed the publication to join sister title Develop. Jarvis will be serving as the development-focused brand’s senior staff writer following the departure of deputy editor CRAIG CHAPPLE, who has gone freelance. Jarvis joined NewBay Media in August 2013 as staff writer on PCR. He then joined MCV in July 2014. “Matt’s knowledge of the games industry and experience working on MCV make him a great addition to the team, as does his keen interest in games development,” said Develop

December 11th 2015

Meanwhile, MARC KENT has been hired to manage the firm’s Warsaw operation. Kent is also a veteran of Babel. He joined that firm in 2000 as functionality tester and rose up to be QA support manager in 2009. Both Buffrey and Kent will be reporting to director of operations, CHRIS BEWICK. “I’ve worked with both Marc and Edd in video games QA for many years,” said Bewick. “They are both highly regarded and have proven track records in the sector where they have been instrumental in driving best practices and innovating QA methodologies.” Kent added: “I’m thrilled to be joining Testronic. Its reputation and client list is enviable, and

editor JAMES BATCHELOR. “I’m looking forward to working with him.” TESTRONIC | The QA and localisation firm has hired two industry vets to manage its London and Warsaw operations. EDD BUFFREY comes on board as the boss of Testronic’s new London facility. He worked for rival QA and localisation firm Babel since 2004 when he joined as senior QA co-ordinator. He then rose up the ranks until he was made pre-production manager in 2010.

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Poland has proven a fertile ground for delivering firstrate QA services at a highly competitive price.” CURVE DIGITAL | The indie publisher has hired a new trainee QA technician. Bournemouth University graduate DAVID SPRINGER has been hired in his first role in the games industry. He graduated from the university with a degree in Games Technology. “The experience I will receive working at Curve will be invaluable,” Spring said. “I am looking forward to taking my first steps into an exciting career in the games sector”

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OWLCHEMY LABS INDIE INTERVIEW

The worst-sounding video game of all time Last month, MCV was asked to play bizarre VR game Job Simulator – a task we undertook with some reluctance. Was it as bad as it sounds? Christopher Dring reports

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he HTC Vive virtual reality headset has a launch title called Job Simulator. The game lets players live out their dreams of becoming an office worker, a chef and a supermarket employee. It sounds utterly dreadful. At least Goat Simulator lets you control a goat. “When it came to thinking up the name for this game, we asked ourselves: ‘What is the most generic sort of name, that is also unique enough that can grab some attention?’. That was Job Simulator,” explains Devin Reimer, chief technical ‘owl’ at developer Owlchemy Labs “A few people seem to think it is a placeholder name, it isn’t. It is Job Simulator.” Of course, it isn’t dreadful. It’s actually one of the more enjoyable VR demoes we’ve played. The game is set in 2050 and is a ‘virtual representation’ of what robots (who now do all our jobs) think working life was like. Yes, you have to answer phones, press buttons, pour coffee... but you can also smash the place up, chuck staplers at colleagues and generally lose your mind. Yet outside of the gameplay, what makes Job Simulator so compelling is that it feels immersive. Using HTC Vive, when you turn your head, so does your character. Step forward in real life, and your character moves within the confines of his or her cubicle. The Vive’s controllers also allows you to realistically manipulate things – pretty much everything you see can be moved, smashed and picked up. “When HTC and Valve approached us and said they were building a VR experience where you could move around, we

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Job Simulator was the first nonValve-made VR game to hit Steam

realised we had to rethink what a good game would be with that,” continues Reimer. “When you can move your hands, you just want to touch everything. We can’t have static objects in your environment, because it just feels wrong. Then we started to think about what this environment might be, and we said: ‘What if it is the most mundane jobs ever?’ And then we would put this layer of silly on-top of it.” JOB LOT Owlchemy is an independent studio devoted to VR. It began five years ago, creating mobile games such as Snuggle Truck (physics-based driving game) and the Fruit Ninjaalike Jack Lumber. It has released PC products, too, including the VR game Aaaaaculus – the Oculus Riftversion of its smartphone basejumping game Aaaaa. “We were the first non-Valvemade VR game on Steam, and we learned a lot,” said Reimer “We have kept saying: ‘It’s going to take off, we just know it.’ And we, as an entire company, shifted to only doing VR stuff.”

When it comes to virtual reality, trailers are useless. If you just watch someone playing VR it is terrible. Devin Reimer, Owlchemy Labs

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Indeed, there’s a lot of investment and excitement around VR, but there’s a lot of uncertainty, too. The tech is going to take some selling and it’s not a medium that lends itself well to TV ads. But Reimer feels Job Simulator could help. “Trailers are useless,” he says. “We’ve been wondering for a long time about how we portray this game on a 2D screen. So we’ve been creating these teaser trailers where Alex, my partner, goes and does crazy stuff in the game for 30 seconds. We put that out and that seems to have worked really well. If you just watch someone playing VR it is terrible. In our trailer, it looks natural, it looks immersive. Since HTC and Valve started showing this at GDC, Job Simulator has been in every one of their demos - they’ve taken it everywhere. He adds: “And the reaction has been fantastic with the press, better than we could have ever imagined. It seems to have resonated. People like to use their hands in VR and do stuff.” Reimer’s optimism about VR is evident in his every sentence. Does that mean it’s over for Owlchemy and the mobile space? “Mobile is a very difficult place,” he concludes. “I liked getting games out to the hands of more people. But VR is even beyond that. When we started doing Job Simulator, one of the first tests we did involved me putting my grandma into the Kitchen demo, and I started to explain how it works - she has no background in games - but she just started making soup. “We are removing obstacles within games. It is using your body in a natural way and we are building something that everyone can play. Which is fantastic.”

December 11th 2015


WEEKLY SALES CHARTS

WEEKLY CHARTS FIFA 16 records its sixth No.1 in the UK All Formats Top 40 since its debut in September. Sales of EA’s football title declined 41 per cent week-on-week. It heads up a Top Three that remains unchanged – Call of Duty: Black Ops III hangs in there in second place ahead of Star Wars Battlefront. The highest new entry in the charts is Square Enix’s Just Cause 3 at No.4. Week One sales of that title were 46 per cent higher than Just Cause 2 when that game hit shelves in 2010. The other new entry in the Top Ten was Rainbow Six: Siege, which debuts in sixth place. Further down the chart is Nintendo Wii U-exclusive Xenoblade

Chronicles X at No.28. The RPG saw Week One sales that were 73 per cent higher than what its predecessor, Wii title Xenoblade Chronicles, managed in 2011. Over in the App Store charts, Sega’s Football Manager Mobile takes the top spot in the Paid charts for both iPad and iPhone. It deposes Minecraft: Pocket Edition in both rankings. Meanwhile, Clash of Clans overtakes King’s Candy Crush Saga in the iPad revenue listings. It was already top of the equivalent iPhone chart. But King continues to have success in the iPad free charts, with Blossom Blast Saga being the mostdownloaded free game on iPad for the week.

GLOBAL STEAM CHARTS (UNITS)

01 TW 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10

LW 03 01 NEW 04 NEW 06 06 05 09

GRAND THEFT AUTO V DEVELOPER: ROCKSTAR NORTH PUBLISHER: ROCKSTAR

TITLE Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Fallout 4 Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Siege The Witcher III: Wild Hunt Just Cause 3 Rocket League Ark: Survival Evolved Elite Dangerous Skyrim – Legendary Edition

PUBLISHER Valve Bethesda Ubisoft CD Projekt RED Square Enix Psyonix Studio Wildcard Frontier Developments Bethesda

TOP 40 UK PHYSICAL RETAIL 02

01

TW 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40

LW 01 02 03 NEW 04 NEW 07 06 05 14 08 11 13 09 12 10 19 17 18 22 24 16 20 25 23 27 21 NEW 29 32 RE RE 40 33 26 28 31 38 46 RE

Title FIFA 16 Call of Duty: Black Ops III Star Wars Battlefront Just Cause 3 Fallout 4 Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Siege Minecraft: Story Mode Grand Theft Auto V Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection WWE 2K16 Halo 5: Guardians Assassin’s Creed Syndicate LEGO Dimensions Rise of the Tomb Raider Disney Infinity 3.0 Forza Motorsport 6 Minecraft: Xbox Edition LEGO Jurassic World Just Dance 2016 Need for Speed Until Dawn Skylanders Superchargers Guitar Hero Live Mario Kart 8 Batman: Arkham Knight Splatoon The Last of Us Remastered Xenoblade Chronicles X Minecraft: PlayStation Edition Football Manager 2016 Battlefield 4 Super Mario Maker Animal Corssing: Happy Home Designer Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain Destiny: The Taken King The Witcher III: Wild Hunt Mad Max LEGO Batman 3: Beyond Gotham NBA 2K16 Terraria

Source: Steam, Period: November 29th to Decemer 5th December 11th 2015

03

04

05

Format Publisher PS4, XO, PS3, 360, PC EA PS4, XO, PS3, 360, PC Activision Blizzard PS4, XO, PC EA PS4, XO, PC Square Enix PS4, XO, PC Bethesda PS4, XO, PC Ubisoft PS4, XO, PS3, 360, PC Telltale Games PS4, XO, PS3, 360, PC Rockstar PS4 Sony PS4, XO, PS3, 360, PC 2K Games XO Microsoft PS4, XO, PC Ubisoft PS4, XO, Wii U, PS3, 360, PC Warner Bros XO Square Enix PS4, XO, Wii U, PS3, 360 Disney XO Microsoft XO, 360 Microsoft PS4, PS3, XO, 360, Wii U, 3DS, Vita, PC Warner Bros PS4, XO, Wii U, PS3, 360 Ubisoft PS4, XO EA PS4 Sony PS4, XO, Wii U, PS3, 360, Tablet Activision Blizzard PS4, XO, PS3, 360 Activision Blizzard Wii U Nintendo PS4, XO Warner Bros Wii U Nintendo PS4 Sony Wii U Nintendo PS4, PS3, Vita Sony PC Sega PS4, XO, PS3, 360, PC EA Wii U Nintendo Wii U Nintendo PS4, XO, PS3, 360, PC Konami PS4, XO, PS3, 360 Activision Blizzard PS4, XO, PC CD Projekt RED/Bandai Namco PS4, XO Warner Bros PS4, PS3, XO, 360, Wii U, 3DS, Vita, PC Warner Bros PS4, XO, PS3, 360 2K Games PS4, XO, PS3, 360, PC 505 Games/Merge

Source: UKIE/GfK Chart-Track, Period: Week ending December 5th 16

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WEEKLY SALES CHARTS

UK IPAD PAID

01 TW 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10

LW 01 02 12 NEW 04 NEW 13 NEW 10

UK IPHONE PAID

(UNITS)

01

FOOTBALL MANAGER MOBILE EDITION DEVELOPER: SEGA

Title Minecraft: Pocket Edition Minecraft: Story Mode The Chase Christmas Eve: Midnight’s Call The Room Three Sable Maze Tipping Point Football Manager Touch 2016 Terraria

TW 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10

Developer Mojang Telltale Barnstorm Big Fish Games Fireproof Big Fish Games Barnstorm Sega 505 Games

LW 11 01 03 NEW 04 07 06 15 10

Source: UKIE/Refl ection, Period: November 23rd to November 29th

(UNITS)

FOOTBALL MANAGER MOBILE EDITION DEVELOPER: SEGA

Title The Chase Minecraft: Pocket Edition Heads Up Bangers Unlimited Pro Storage Hunters UK Monopoly Minecraft: Story Mode Tipping Point Geometry Dash

Source: UKIE/Refl ection, Period: November 23rd to November 29th

UK IPAD GROSSING (REVENUE)

UK IPHONE GROSSING (REVENUE)

01

01

TW 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10

LW 01 04 03 05 06 08 07 09 10

CLASH OF CLANS DEVELOPER: SUPERCELL

Title Candy Crush Saga Game of War – Fire Age Candy Crush Soda Saga Hay Day Boom Beach Gummy Drop Farm Heroes Saga Football Manager Mobile 2016 The Sims FreePlay

TW 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10

Developer King.com Machine Zone King.com Supercell Supercell Big Fish Games King.com Sega EA

LW 03 02 05 04 10 06 07 08 14

Source: UKIE/Refl ection, Period: November 23rd to November 29th

CLASH OF CLANS DEVELOPER: SUPERCELL

Title Game of War – Fire Age Candy Crush Saga Football Manager Mobile 2016 Candy Crush Soda Saga Episode – Choose Your Story Marvel Contest of Champions Summoners War Farm Heroes Saga WWE SuperCard

UK IPHONE FREE (UNITS)

01

01

LW 08 04 NEW RE 03 02 16 RE 05

BLOSSOM BLAST SAGA DEVELOPER: KING.COM

Title Real Boxing 2 Creed Smashy Road: Wanted Daily Celebrity Crossword Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes Warhammer 40,000: Freeblade Twist The Good Dinosaur BBC CBeebies Playtime Mobile Strike

TW 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10

Developer Vivid Games Remco Kortenoeve PuzzleSocial EA Pixel Toys Ketchapp Disney Media Applications Technology Epic War

Source: UKIE/Refl ection, Period: November 23rd to November 29th www.mcvuk.com

Developer Machine Zone King.com Sega King.com Episode Interactive Kabam Com2uS Corp King.com 2K Games

Source: UKIE/Refl ection, Period: November 23rd to November 29th

UK IPAD FREE (UNITS)

TW 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10

Developer Barnstorm Mojang Warner Bro Stuart Cowie UKTV Interactive EA Telltale Barnstorm RobTop Games

LW 01 13 02 09 NEW NEW 20 03 16

TWIST DEVELOPER: KETCHAPP

Title Weed Firm: RePlanted Real Boxing 2 Creed Smashy Road: Wanted Hop Hop Hop Kill Shot Bravo Blossom Blast Saga Mobile Strike Piano Tiles 2 Episode

Developer B! Canada Vivid Games Remco Kortenoever Ketchapp Hothead Games King.com Epic War Cheetah Technology Episode Interactive

Source: UKIE/Refl ection, Period: November 23rd to November 29th 17

December 11th 2015


INTERVIEW DEBBIE BESTWICK, TEAM 17

Ultimate Team The Escapists, Yooka-Laylee, Beyond Eyes... 2015 has been one of the most exciting years in Team17’s history. Not bad for a business that’s now 25-years-old. MCV speaks to CEO Debbie Bestwick on the company’s quarter of a century in the games industry For those that weren’t around 25 years ago, how did Team17 start? It was an offshoot of Martyn Brown’s 17-bit software, my own [retail chain] Microbyte, and the owner of both companies Michael Robinson. Michael was basically an entrepreneur who had the idea about building a games publisher that involved the games creators from 17-bit mixed with the retailing and sales knowledge from Microbyte. The business model at the time was a very simple one - What genres sell? Let’s make them better and at the very worst case, we can always breakeven by selling the games through our own retail chain. A bit like owning your own app store. It was certainly ahead of the times. What do you think is the secret to Team17’s longevity? That’s a difficult question. For around ten of the past 25 years, all of them ironically postWorms launching, we came so close to losing the business numerous times due to game slippage, less than smart business decisions and publisher traumas. Worms changed everything about the company in 1995. Prior to that we were doing some very cool stuff - similar to what we are doing right now actually - with amazing games talent from around the world and I often wonder what else we would have done had Worms not landed. We should have stayed true to what we had been doing, but overnight nothing mattered but Worms. We really thought we were superstars and everything we touched would

December 11th 2015

Team17 is publishing Playtonic’s Kickstarter hit Yooka-Laylee

turn to gold, but the reality was that a lot of money was wasted on games that were never released. These included Rollcage, Allegiance, Witchwood, P.I.G, and so many more I won’t mention. I’d say, looking back now, that the Worms IP was as much a Godsend as a poison chalice. Over the years, Team17 has`````````````````` had to learn to survive. We know how to dig deep, deliver commercially and Team17 also has a habit of being in there early on the next big thing, from mobile to digital to our own games label. These days, Team17 has an incredibly resilient win attitude simply because we want to be the best. I’m incredibly proud to say we finally have the ‘Team’ part of our name in our work ethic. From the top level down, across all of the teams we work with and our own people too, we all work to the same belief: ‘We win together and we fail together’. Working without fear is incredibly powerful and that’s the culture we’ve tried to instill across the board.

Where did Worms come from, and why do you think it has endured? Andy Davidson [Worms’ creator] was a huge fan of our Amiga games and had popped in to see us at ECTS. He showed us the game and wanted to see if we’d sign it. That night, everyone simply could not stop playing it and the rest, as they say, is history. Worms is one of those dream games that just watching people play pulls you in and has that addictive ‘just one more go’ gameplay. It also works well on all screen sizes and so obviously lends itself to every available format. It’s a gaming classic these days and it’s been a big part of many gamer’s lives for decades. What impact did the rise of digital have on Team17? We had our first PC game download in early 2000 and mobile in 2001, but once Steam, Microsoft, Sony and Apple entered the fray, it changed everything. This was definitely the turning point for us as it was the first time we were truly able to take control of our own business in a very long time.

Looking back, the Worms IP was as much a Godsend as it was a poison chalice. Debbie Bestick, Team17

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You’ve recently transitioned back into publishing, acting as a games label for indie devs. How has that changed Team17? We’re even closer as a team and we certainly appreciate each other even more now. Historically we were a pretty closed unit, but we’ve definitely had our eyes completely opened over the last year. Some things have shocked us, others have delighted us. Businesswise, we’ve obviously had a record year on all fronts and

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DEBBIE BESTWICK, TEAM 17 INTERVIEW

Team17 has grown considerably over the last 25 year

it’s been a great start to what we hope to achieve. As any business that radically changes the way it works, we underestimated a few areas specifically the level of involvement needed from our own development studio to help the label teams get games ready for a commercial release. Every one of our label partners has, at some point, needed some resources from the games development studio and that’s put a lot of pressure on internal resources. The commercial team are pretty much all new people who have long-term publishing backgrounds. I think they will all agree they’ve never worked harder, and it’s been a shock to see something that took a month at their prior jobs happen in a day or two at Team17. They’ve had to learn a whole new process and structure, as what they were used to makes no sense in the modern digital world we live in. Thankfully any growing pains are now behind us. From a business point of view, two years ago,

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Worms was responsible for 90 per cent of our revenue. Right now, it’s less than 33 per cent on record revenue and growth, so we’re very pleased with how the first 12 months on the label have gone.

TEAM SPIRIT Team17 CEO Debbie Bestwick recalls the key moments that have come to define the company’s history: Q Signing Worms – That game changed everything about who we were.

How will you be celebrating Team17’s latest milestone? We had a small social gathering last month to celebrate, which was a first as we are notorious for not celebrating important events or even actually turning up for them. It’s not because we don’t appreciative them, it’s simply because we are so focused on what’s next. Given an evening off, most of us will quietly catch up on some sleep. Pretty boring I know, but it’s been an insane year for all of us.

Q Nearly losing the Worms IP - a massive wake-up call for people in the dev studio. This was the first time we had to make significant redundancies and cut insane deals to survive. Q Worms 3D - the majority of us never wanted to do it but did due to massive peer pressure from publishers and the industry as a whole. It was a stupid decision looking back and the start of probably the worst four years Team17 experienced both in terms of morale and business.

What is your aim for Team 17 over the next 25 years? The thing that interests us the most is where our partners will be... only then can we look back and say we delivered.

Q A major publisher cancelling products and taking legal action that lasted

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almost a year - We nearly lost the whole business. This was our worst nightmare coming true and the first time we’d faced a top tier publisher trying to break contracts in, let’s say, ‘not the right manner’. Q Digital distribution - our saviour and the start of regaining control of our future. Q Going it alone - the MBO was painful but important for the future of the company. Q Helping a new generation of independent game studios - where pillar franchises such as Worms, Mouldy Toof’s The Escapists, Yooka Laylee from Playtonic Games, and Lilith’s Allison Road all live. Together we are all stronger.

December 11th 2015


GAMESAID UPDATE

What’s next for GamesAid? The industry charity announced its most successful year of funding ever in September, generating more than half a million pounds. So what now? Christopher Dring asks new chair of GamesAid, Ian Chambers

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t Warner Bros’ UK HQ in September, GamesAid awarded an incredible £564,000 to be split between eight UK charities devoted to supporting young people. In an emotional and beautiful ceremony, Accuro, Action for Kids, The Clock Tower Sanctuary, Lifelites, MAPS, Safe At Last, SpecialEffect and Jigsaw 4 U all received £70,500 each. It was the most money ever raised by the games industry charity in its eight-year history, boosted by charitable initiatives from Humble Bundle, plus special

December 11th 2015

events such as the Stand Up For GamesAid comedy night, GamesAid Golf day and Brighton Poker Night. “Last year we had our biggest year to date, with £564,000 being distributed to eight charities that support disabled children and young people,” recalls Ian Chambers, the new chair of GamesAid. “As well as the regular fundraisers, such as the golf day, comedy night, eBay store and poker evening, we saw more members than ever before being sponsored to take on challenges. Thanks to our partnerships with publishers and

We want to find more ways to engage the gaming community and encourage them to support our cause. Ian Chambers, GamesAid

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Humble Bundle, we gave gamers the opportunity to contribute to GamesAid’s growth. “As we look to the future, we want to find more ways to engage the gaming community, encourage them to support our cause and help continue the growth of the charity.” ALL CHANGE Chambers is the man to lead a team of trustees into somehow topping the achievements of the last 12 months. As chair, he stepped into the shoes of Pokémon Company’s Emily Britt, who ably led the industry charity to such heights.

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GAMESAID UPDATE

It’s just one of several changes to have taken place at GamesAid this year. “Following two successful years as chair and vice-chair respectively, Emily Britt and Rich Keen’s tenure has come to an end,” reveals Chambers. “I would like to thank both Emily and Rich for their hard work and dedication to GamesAid, and we look forward to continuing working with them in their role as trustees. “Along with myself as incoming chair, Matt Spall has been voted in as vice-chair for the next two years. “I would also like to thank departing trustees Rich Keith and John Houlihan for the role they have played over the past three years. And, also, to welcome incoming trustees Chris Dring, Des Gayle, Cat Channon and Michael French.” Already, GamesAid has hinted at a very strong start to the latest year in terms of fundraising. With the money the charity is raising reaching more than half a million pounds – and growth looking set to continue – Chambers and the trustees are

strategising where the charity goes from here. It is an industry charity, of course, so the desire is to get even more people working in games – including those in publishing, development, retail and all the service industries – involved and putting forward their views on what GamesAid should be and could do. If you’re not a member of GamesAid, you can sign up via gamesaid.org for free. “This funding year has got off to a great start with Roy Stackhouse’s three peaks challenge, the Vault Boy Bake Off and new Humble Bundles – to name a few,” Chambers says on the initiatives we’ve seen since September. “With the Games On Song concert on December 16th, the Yogscast Jingle Jam and a Codemasters Humble Bundle underway, we are confident of keeping the positive momentum into 2016. There is always more that we can do, though, and we would love to hear from anyone that has any ideas – no matter how big or small.”

DEVELOPING THE NEXT GENERATION AS GamesAid trustees are all volunteers with real day jobs, the day-to-day running of GamesAid tasks are handled by a paid intern. Three interns have passed through the doors at GamesAid – Jack Masterson, Alex Gouldman and Nicole Gilroy. All three have gone on to big success, with two immediately finding new work within the games industry. Masterson is now at Sports Interactive, while the most recent intern – Gilroy – has secured employment at Sega. “I’ve had an amazing time being the GamesAid intern and having the opportunity to meet and work with so many great people,” says Gilroy.

“I’ve learned so much and fine-tuned many valuable skills that I’ll be using in my new role as a project coordinator at Sega. “GamesAid is a wonderful organisation run by wonderful people and I’m actually quite sad to leave – you can’t be an intern forever, though. I wish the best of luck to everyone there and hope to be involved with the charity in the future.” GamesAid chair Ian Chambers adds: “With Nicole starting in her role as at Sega, our intern program has now helped three new talents to develop their skills within the games industry. “We’re currently searching for our next intern and expect to have someone in place by January.”

GamesAid’s 2015 included the cheque-giving ceremony, poker night, Gamescom choir, comedy night, golf day and Activision hike

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December 11th 2015


RESTROSPECTIVE

2015

Review of the Year It’s very nearly time to head home for Christmas. Can you believe it? Ben Parfitt prepares for some serious festive napping by looking back at the events that shaped the games industry in 2015

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s the Doctor once said: “There’s loads of boring stuff like Sundays and Tuesdays and Thursday afternoons, but now and then there are Saturdays”. 2015 was perhaps not quite a Saturday, but nor was it a Tuesday. A Friday, perhaps? Although only a Friday morning or early afternoon. The current generation of consoles spent the year comfortably bedding in. Sales were pretty good – better than expected, really – but slower than in 2014. Although PS4’s performance at least has likely exceeded even the wildest expectations. At the same time, the looming promise of virtual reality feels perpetually nearly here, but never actually here. And meanwhile the

growing shift to digital has left the market a little confused about how we’re actually doing. Another frustration was the number of big triple-A releases that were pushed into 2016. We did have some big hitters, with titles like The Witcher 3, Fallout 4 and Call of Duty: Black Ops III smashing it at retail. On the flip side, games like Halo 5 and Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate probably fell short of expectations. Perhaps 2015 is best seen as an appetiser for what’s to come. With a new Nintendo console and perhaps a brand new format revolution in the form of virtual reality, 2016 approaches with massive expectations. Here’s a look back at how the stage was set.

The fate of Hideo Kojima at Konami has yet to be officially confirmed

JANUARY HAPPY New Year! Did you make a New Year’s resolution? It seems that lots of folk did, pledging to abandon the tired and old tradition of reading dull, static words about video games in favour of listening to excitable youngsters shout, swear and wriggle in front of a webcam. Said youngsters started the New Year on a bit of a downer, however, when Nintendo had the nerve to ask if it could please have a share of the millions being made by people streaming its software

December 11th 2015

FEBRUARY

online. Suffice to say, Nintendo’s revenue sharing arrangement flopped harder than the Virtual Boy. “This is outrageous!” cried many, including PewDiePie, who mainly felt that Nintendo should be pretty effing grateful for the coverage. There was more bad news this month, too, with revenue numbers from Japan revealing that the video games market was not only down 10 per cent year-on-year but had also hit its lowest point for 24 years. Kuso.

YOU thought January was bad? February was even grimmer, with parts of the internet – and even parts of the press – rounding on one of the UK development scene’s most cherished fathers. As much as MCV felt for Peter Molyneux, however, few would argue that the Populous, Theme Park and Fable designer didn’t drop a colossal clanger with his handling of Kickstarted strategy title Godus. That the game looked almost certain to fall short of the

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promises made to backers was bad enough, but it was the handling of its God of God prize winner that really sent temperatures racing. Bryan Henderson was supposed to have been awarded not only a controlling god-like position in Godus, but also a share of its realworld financial spoils. Neither of which came to fruition. Peter held his hands up in a video confession, although it should be noted that Henderson is still waiting to claim his prize.

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RETROSPECTIVE

MARCH

AFTER a slow couple of months, 2015 really got going in March. GAME’s acquisition of eSports company Multiplay was a very telling move at a time of transformation in the games industry. Speaking of which – Nintendo’s announcement that it had partnered with DeNA to release its IP on smartphones was as stark a sign of the times as you could ever want. So much so, in fact, that many assumed the announcement signalled Nintendo’s prospective exit from the console market. Or at least they would have done had Nintendo not at the exact same time announced its next console, the NX. All of which put the company in a slightly sticky situation. It was desperate for the public not to misconstrue its mobile move as a strategic shift away

from traditional gaming, but in announcing the NX to achieve this it also potentially hit the already doomed Wii U right where it hurts.

on holiday, but the developer not only appeared to have a leaving party upon his supposed departure, but was also barred by Konami’s lawyers from accepting his award at December’s US show The Game Awards. Surely we all know where this one is heading...

Along with all of this, March also brought with it the first rumblings of discontent between Metal Gear Solid creator Hideo Kojima and his employer Konami. Even as 2015 draws to a close we still don’t know exactly what’s going on. Konami insists Hideo’s just

APRIL WITH spring came some real cause for celebration. Feminist Frequency creator and equality advocate Anita Sarkeesian made her debut in the prestigious TIME 100 list. Her entry, written by Wil ‘Wesley Crusher’ Wheaton, recognised the horrific behaviour she suffered at the hands of the GamerGate hate group and the strength she has shown in standing up and defeating it. In more domestic affairs, retailers cut the PS4 to £290

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MAY

for the first time (that’s below the current post price-drop RRP) as the somewhat unique UK High Street price wars adopted the new-gen console race as its battleground. Also dropping in price was Xbox One, with a new £299 SKU paving the way for an official cut in June. In more glamorous news, it was also confirmed that Daniel ‘Harry Potter’ Radcliffe and Bill Paxton were to star in an unofficial BBC drama about the development of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

THE month for sales figures, it seems, both in the software and hardware realms. Rockstar announced that Grand Theft Auto V had up to this point shipped an eye-watering, tank-exploding, jet fighterstealing, shotgunemptying 52m units worldwide, helped in no small part by the previous month’s delayed PC launch. On the console side, MCV also revealed that Sony’s highly successful PS4 had reached 2m unit sales in the UK alone.

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It did so faster than the PS2 managed, too, taking just 75 weeks to hit the milestone. Earlier it had hit 1m in 42 weeks. While many concerned themselves with products already released, some were more interested in products yet to come. A studio called Playtonic hoped to make a spiritual successor to Banjo Kazooie, and punters were keen to oblige, zipping the game past its £175k Kickstarter funding target in just 40 minutes. It went on to raise over £2m.

December 11th 2015


RETROSPECTIVE

JUNE RIGHT, now we’re talking. June means E3 and E3 means news. Sony’s conference probably had the most thrills, with a headline-making and longawaited appearance from Team Ico’s The Last Guardian and the fanboy-melting Shenmue III and Final Fantasy VII Remake. Microsoft’s Hololens demo impressed at the time but its biggest news was probably Xbox 360 backwards compatibility for Xbox One. The real-world importance of backwards compatibility is certainly a matter for debate, but there’s no denying it’s a crowd pleaser. Although that didn’t stop Sony coming out and

JULY

saying it didn’t really see the point (before rolling out PS2 compatibility for PS4 six months later). Nintendo, meanwhile, had to come out and apologise for the perceived weakness of its E3 presentation. Although Reggie later denied that Iwata’s apology was indeed an apology at all. Elsewhere, YouTube announced plans to take on Twitch with its own streaming platform, while Warner Bros was forced to pull the PC version of Batman: Arkham Knight from sale after it was released with numerous game-breaking bugs and missing some of even the most basic graphical features.

TRAGEDY struck the global video games industry in July with the sad passing of Nintendo president Satoru Iwata. He was aged just 55 and had been struggling with cancer of the bile duct. Having become close to previous Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi, Iwata was the first person outside of the famous Yamauchi family to be handed the reigns at Nintendo when he became the company’s fourth president in 2002. His crowning achievements were undoubtedly the global success of the Wii and DS.

AUGUST MCV made a bold move in August by announcing it was to drop the UKIE Gfk Chart-Track UK charts from its magazine for the first time in 17 years. We did this because the Top 40, as it stands, is meaningless. The omission of digital data sits at odds with the growing importance of the digital market, and that’s a serious issue – each week we don’t really have a clue what game really is No.1 (indeed, in August PSN release Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture SHOULD have been No.1 – though of course it didn’t feature at all). Furthermore, the numbers we’re getting are

December 11th 2015

The Wii, in particular, was a watershed moment for gaming, elevating it to a staple of the modern family living room. In more trivial matters, July was otherwise a very busy month. Shenmue III broke Kickstarter records to raise $6.3m. SOE boss John Smedley, meanwhile, took to Twitter to threaten a hacker who was spared a custodial sentence. He later left the firm. We also discovered that PewDiePie made a really quite substantial $7.45m in 2014, while we also had confirmation of Fergal Gara’s resignation as the boss of SCE UK.

SEPTEMBER

painting a picture of a declining market, and that’s quite likely to be horribly inaccurate. This guessing game is daft. Elsewhere, MCV published an in-depth look at the growing problem of doping in eSports, with the ESL outlining a new anti-doping policy to try and quash the problem and get some certainty within the sector. While drugs were on the way in, however, Peter Dinklage was on the way out, with Activision unceremoniously chopping the Game of Thrones star from Destiny and replacing him with the ubiquitous Nolan North.

IT’S hard to pick a stand-out headline from September. Certainly for many consumers the first rumblings of what threatens to be a big issue for GAME started to emerge when some buyers were overcharged for new Wii U release Super Mario Maker. Since then there have been issues with a number of releases including Fallout 4, and chatter also points to some Black Friday troubles at the retailer. Also irking some was the delay of the Wii U’s only big Christmas title, Star Fox Zero, as well as the news that

26

both virtual reality hopefuls PlayStation VR and Oculus Rift are going to cost at least $300 apiece when they release some time next year. Others may have been more excited by the announcement of new, gamesfriendly Apple TV, though. MCV’s favourite story, however, was Tomonobu Itagaki blaming reviewers for the poor review scores dished out to Wii U title Devil’s Third. “I believe that those of you who actually have the game in your hands are more than satisfied,” he said, bravely ignoring its 44 per cent Metacritic score.

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RETROSPECTIVE

OCTOBER THE dirtier side of the internet resurfaced again in October. US games event SXSW cancelled planned panels discussing both the victims of Gamergate, and those who back the cause. The whole affair, as you might imagine, resulted in the most heated and unpleasant exchanges. Also unpleasant was the reaction to Overkill’s Payday 2 microtransactions, although this time there was at least a reasonable catalyst for the anger. Pay-to-win in any game is an invitation for vitriol, but in a premium game it’s guaranteed social media suicide.

THE TOP 10 STORIES ON MCVUK.COM So you’ve read all about what stories we thought rocked the gaming boat in 2015. But what do we know, right? The reader is ultimately the judge of what is or is not important and it will likely surprise no one that the top 10 most read stories on the MCV website are completely different to everything we’ve picked.

More popular with gamers was LEGO Dimensions, which marked the debut of a new competitor in the increasingly busy toys-to-life category. Furthermore, the game beat the week one sales of both Disney Infinity 3.0 and Skylanders Superchargers. Elsewhere, Sony both cut the price of PS4 to bring it in line with Xbox One and also introduced a new streaming service for PS4 owners, PlayStation Now. Nintendo also detailed its first mobile release Miitomo, although at the same time it delayed it until 2016.

1.

CD Projekt Red: ‘Cyberpunk 2077 is far, far bigger than The Witcher 3’ (October) This wasn’t just the most read story of the year – it quickly became the most read story of all time on MCV’s site, overtaking the news we broke back in March 2012 of which GAME and Gamestation stores would close as part of the company’s administration. So credit to young staff writer Matt Jarvis, who has since abandoned MCV for our sister title Develop, the little tyke.

2.

Steam offers unconditional refunds for Journey of the Light amid accusations of deception (August) Either PC owners hate getting ripped off or love reading about others that have. Or maybe both.

3.

Valve admits it needs to communicate with fans more (March) It’s those PC gamers again, this time relishing in Valve’s admission that while it excels at digital content delivery, it still often sucks at customer service.

4.

Nintendo set to offer ‘Loot Crate’ subscription box rival (July) Nintendo fans are into their gaming tat? Who knew? Oh yes, every retailer who ever made shelf space for an Amiibo.

NOVEMBER THE year’s penultimate month saw PS4 sales pass 30m worldwide, beating the time it took the all-conquering PS2 to reach the same number. Microsoft, incidentally, said in October that it wasn’t going to report hardware sales any more. Activision completed an eyewatering $5.9bn acquisition of King, while we were also struck by the sad news that Mastertronic had entered administration.

5.

Sega cutting 300 jobs as it prepares for digital, non-console future (January) There’s no gloating here as the console sector decline of a former superpower creates a generation of sadness.

Koei Tecmo stirred up trouble, revealing that the demand to to be rid of exploitative sexual female imagery had led it to cancel the Western release of Dead or Alive Xtreme 3 – a good decision, for sure, although of course the angry men of the internet were most displeased, On the other side of the coin, Zoe Quinn sold the rights for a movie based on the harassment she had suffered at the hands of the GamerGate mob.

6.

Dreamcast console sales spike following Shenmue III reveal (August) Still, for a company that hasn’t released a console since 1999 or a good Sonic game since 1994, Sega still commands plenty of affection across the world.

7.

Team Secret on independence and why they’re seeking sponsorship (June) MCV’s made big moves into eSports reporting this year, although we still haven’t discovered a Mill Rogue deck that’s reliable for laddering.

8.

Fallout boy: Bethesda’s Pete Hines on the biggest 12 months in the publisher’s history (August) Yous lot certainly love yous a bit of Fallout, innit?

9.

Modified PS4 and Xbox One will offer 4K later this year, Netflix says (February) This definitely happened, right? RIGHT?

10.

Paradox on Crusader Kings III: ‘It’s no secret successful games get sequels - it’s just a matter of when’ (April) We take that as meaning there’s a big appetite for Crusader Kings IV, then? Get on it, Paradox!

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27

December 11th 2015


ADAM SIMMONS, DINGIT INTERVIEW

Can you DingIt? In February, DingIt decided to enter the billion-dollar video streaming market. But how can it hope to compete with giants like Twitch and YouTube Gaming? MCV catches up with head of content Adam Simmons to find out How would you assess DingIt’s performance so far? We are extremely happy with how 2015 has gone. DingIt launched in open beta in February and we have just reached 13m monthly uniques globally in November, exceeding all our targets - and we are still growing. The really exciting news is that we are already profitable, so it’s safe to say this year has been a great start for DingIt. The streaming market is already dominated by Twitch, and we now have heavyweights like YouTube Gaming entering the fray. Is there still room for more companies in the sector? The viewership for eSports alone is estimated to reach 230m-plus by 2017 (according to SuperData). That’s a huge audience, but the model for gaming and eSports streaming is broken, so these growing audiences are not being catered for properly. DingIt has been built from the ground up with revolutionary technology that provides a range of improvements to both broadcasters and, importantly, viewers. Our gaming fans are returning to DingIt in increasing numbers, proving there is definitely room for genuinely innovative platforms in gaming. You say that eSports streaming is broken. What do you mean? When we were building the platform, we looked at all the things that were wrong with the gaming and eSports business. Poor quality streams, excessive buffering and latency, and unsustainable revenue models all mean that the content creators and the viewer experience, suffer. By understanding these

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shortcomings, we’ve been able to create a platform that addresses these issues with proprietary technology that delivers an unparalleled streaming experience, a revenue model that works and all on a platform with global appeal.

DINGIT IN NUMBERS Average monthly growth figure: 130 per cent Current traffic numbers: November: 13.5M monthly uniques Total traffic to date: 45 million

What is your focus when it comes to user acquisition? Our mission is to provide a high quality experience to gaming fans everywhere, from the lighter viewers right through to the hardcore gamers. One of the main drivers for our growth has been through our Highlights content. We produce these highlights directly from our exclusive events and they act as a gateway for new gaming audiences into the world of eSports. Whilst our current focus is on eSports, DingIt is an open platform for any broadcaster who wants to join and either start or grow their streaming careers. Ultimately, DingIt is for gamers and we are investing in content and technology that helps support the gaming community as a whole.

Amount invested in content since February: $362,000 Amount of time watched: Over 343 years’ worth of content since February 2015

developing channels. We have also created clear levels for partnership that sees a revenue share of up to 50 per cent on advertising. Another way we are trying to help broadcasters is to offer a share of channel subscriptions from Day One, as well as a donation feature. You recently expanded into South Korea. Where else will DingIt be expanding in the near future? We already have viewers in 60 countries and we are seeing more gaming fans turn to DingIt for our content every day. One of the main benefits of the platform is that it provides viewers the same great quality anywhere in the world - regardless of location. We can scale our reach into multiple markets easily. The launch of dingit.kr was a starting point for our growth in Asia and we will continue to expand into other countries in 2016.

What kind of investment are you making in bringing streamers and viewers on-board? We are constantly trying to find ways to make it easier for our broadcasters to earn with DingIt. We offer in excess of $50,000 per month in bonus rewards to support

29

December 11th 2015


MARKETPLACE Sponsored by

SHELF LIFE James Harley of Ferryhill’s Stark Computers and Gaming tells MCV about the rising local demand for PS4 and Xbox One this year, and which titles have been selling well alongside Call of Duty: Black Ops III How has business been lately? It’s certainly improved. Sales started to pick up at the end of summer, and have risen up to Christmas. Console sales are getting better – especially the new-gen machines. Last year, the market for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One was non-existent to be honest with you Why is there more demand for PS4 and Xbox One this year? Prices. Around here, there’s not

PRE-ORDER CHARTS

wholesaler. With VAT on top, we just could not compete with that in the slightest.

much in the way of disposable income, so paying a huge lump sum for a console just isn’t realistic. As the prices of the new machines come down, people are happier to pay for them.

What games have been selling particularly well recently? New-gen titles – all the big releases. Games like Call of Duty: Black Ops III and Star Wars Battlefront have been flying off shelves. And as well as Black Ops III, we haven’t been able to keep Black Ops or Black Ops II in stock. They are going straight away. And

Did you do anything for Black Friday? No, we didn’t. To be honest, with the prices that the local Tesco and Asda had, we couldn’t compete. They were about £3 lower than what we were paying from the

Last year, the market for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One was nonexistent here. James Harley, Stark Computers and Gaming

PRICE CHECK: LIVERPOOL

TOP 10 PRE-ORDERS 1. DARK SOULS III COLLECTOR’S EDITION Bandai Namco, PS4

2. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End Sony.........................................................................PS4

STAR WARS BATTLEFRONT

UNCHARTED: THE NATHAN DRAKE COLLECTION

3. Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth Bandai Namco ...................................................PS4 4. Far Cry Primal Ubisoft ....................................................................PS4

EA, PS4

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Microsoft, XO

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9. Final Fantasy VII Square Enix..........................................................PS4

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10. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End Special Edition Sony...................................................................... PS4

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6. Resident Evil Origins Capcom .................................................................PS4

IN STORE

Sony, PS4

5. Tom Clancy’s The Division Inc Beta Ubisoft .......................................................................XO

FORZA MOTORSPORTS 6

7. Dark Souls III Banda Namco ....................................................PS4

UPLOADING The latest digital releases coming to market

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The music festival management simulator is out now for PS Vita

A sequel to SteamWorld Dig has landed on Nintendo’s Wii U

Mega Man’s spiritual successor is set for a February launch in the UK

OUT: NOW

December 11th 2015

ONLINE

8. Final Fantasy Explorer Square Enix......................................................... 3DS

OUT: NOW

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OUT: FEBRUARY 12TH

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MARKETPLACE

Stark Computers and Gaming 17 Main Street, Ferryhill, DL17 8LA

downloadable content is popular all the year round. What do you offer in terms of DLC? We do all the Season Passes as well as the Xbox and PlayStation Network subscriptions. To be honest, we’ll sell anything that the customer asks for. Have you done any big midnight launches lately? No we haven’t any. There are two

Phone: 01740 651 444

24-hour supermarkets locally and we just can’t beat them on pricing. It cripples us a little bit when it comes to midnight releases as we can’t compete. Plus they have offers where you can get £10 off the game with a big enough shop. What has been your bestselling game of the year so far? FIFA 16 or Grand Theft Auto V probably. They have been very popular across all formats.

INCOMING

WANT TO FEATURE YOUR OUTLET IN MCV? Contact acalvin@nbmedia.com or call 01992 515 303

Horror fans are in for a treat in January as Capcom launches its HD updates of Resident Evil 1 and 0 at retail, while Ubisoft brings Zombi to physical stores

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31

December 11th 2015


2016 PREVIEW

2016 As the dust finally starts to settle on a busy Q4 period, Alex Calvin looks into 2016 to find the best merchandise for the biggest games of next year

2016 is already shaping up to have a pretty impressive line-up of games. Within just the first few months of the year we have heavy hitters like Uncharted 4, Quantum Break, Star Fox Zero, Street Fighter V, Plants vs Zombies Garden Warfare 2, LEGO The Avengers, Far Cry Primal, The Division and Hitman coming to stores. That calibre of video games continues further

Within the first few months of 2016, Star Fox Zero, Uncharted 4, Quantum Break and Street Fighter V are hitting shelves.

into the year, with new entries in the Deus Ex, Dishonored, Doom and Mirror’s Edge franchises hitting shelves. And though some of these titles have been pushed back further into the year, UK games retail has been vocal about how

DRAKE SHIRT This long sleeve henley-style t-shirt is inspired by the wardrobe of globe trotting Uncharted hero, Nathan Drake. It’s an appropriate look for travelling around the world and robbing the riches of ancient civlizations. Or sitting down and playing Sony’s biggest exclusive of next year. SRP: £25 Manufacturer: Insert Coin Distributor: Insert Coin Contact: 01702 521 850

ZELDA HYRULE CREST WALLET

XCOM: THE BOARD GAME

THRALL POP! VINYL FIGURE

Zelda turns 30 this year, and Twilight Princess HD and Zelda Wii U are set to hit stores. Keep your money for both safe in this leather wallet.

If the wait for XCOM 2 is proving too difficult, fans of the series can give this board game based on the sci-fi strategy franchise a try.

This vinyl figure of Horde boss Thrall is the perfect companion for those waiting for new WoW expansion, Legion, and the Warcraft film.

SRP: £18.99 Manufacturer: Bioworld Europe Distributor: Gaming Merchandise UK Contact: hello@gamingmerchandiseuk.com

SRP: £44.99 Manufacturer: Fantasy Flight Game Distributor: Esdevium Contact: 01420 593 593

SRP: £9.99 Manufacturer: Funko Distributor: Underground Toys Contact: kenny@underground-toys.com

December 11th 2015

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2016 PREVIEW

Sponsored by

O

gaming merchandise uk

impressive the line-up in 2016 is. Speaking about the start of the year, Hut Group games and technology boss Mike Fethers said: “It’s a superb line-up that shows what can be done during the traditionally quiet time of the year. But I am fearful some of these titles will slip later to more ‘traditional’ release slots.” ShopTo’s head of commercial Alison Fraser added: “It’s reassuring to know that come January the sales aren’t

going to suddenly diminish, like most other years, leaving all of retail wishing that Christmas sales would return. “It’s positive all round to have such an incredible line-up, be it for customers spreading their budgets so as to purchase more titles, or for publishers not to be competing for space in retail in a busy Christmas period, and also for retail who need not be so reliant on Q4.”

STREET FIGHTER IV SOUNDTRACK A new iteration in Capcom’s Street Fighter will be with us in a matter of months. But in the mean time why not celebrate the end of the Street Fighter IV era with this soundtrack CD that collects all of the tunes that players have been brawling to for the past seven years. SRP: £10 Manufacturer: Sumthing Else Music Works Distributor: Sumthing Else Music Works Contact: www.sumthing.com

DISHONORED: THE DUNWALL ARCHIVES

MIRROR’S EDGE LOGO TEE

DEUS EX UNIVERSE COMICS

Gamers can get up to speed with the world of Dishonored with this book ahead of its sequel’s launch this year.

This black t-shirt features the jagged eye-tattoo of Mirror’s Edge protagonist and free runner extraordinare, Faith.

In the build up to the new Deus Ex title, Mankind Divided, Titan is releasing a series of comics setting up the game’s events.

SRP: £20:39 Manufacturer: Dark Horse Distributor: Diamond Comic Distributors UK Contact: 01928 531 760

SRP: $21.99 (£14.60) Manufacturer: DICE Distributor: DICE Contact: www.dice-store.com

SRP: TBC Manufacturer: Titan Books Distributor: Titan Books Contact: sales@titanemail.com

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December 11th 2015


HOT PRODUCTS

Sponsored by

HOT PRODUCTS MCV takes a look at the best accessories heading to UK retail. This week, some special Star Wars Disney Infinity figures are arriving alongside The Force Awakens and Polk unveils its new Hitman-themed games headset DISNEY INFINITY STAR WARS LIGHT FX CHARACTERS DISNEY is launching a new range of collectible Star Wars figures for toys-to-life game, Disney Infinity 3.0. Special Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, Anakin Skywalker, Yoda and Obi-Wan Kenobi toys will be hitting stores later this month. What sets these figures apart from their normal counterparts is that the Jedi and Sith’s lightsabers well light up when placed on the Disney Infinity Base. These toys will be coming to stores on December 18th, the day afterThe Force Awakens reaches cinema screens in the UK.

[INFO] RRP: £14.86 Release Date: December 18th Distributor: CentreSoft Contact: 01216 253 388

POLK AUDIO STRIKER P1 PRO HITMAN CONTRACT EDITION

[INFO] Trade price: £65 Release Date: January 29th Distributor: Exertis Contact: 01279 822 800

THIS premium games headset from audio specialists Polk is designed with Square Enix and IO’s Hitman franchise in mind. The sylish headset comes complete with ‘0047’ printed on the interior of the ear cup. Agent 47 is the name of the titular Hitman. Built for audiophiles, the Polk product features custom tuned drivers packed with the company’s patented Dynamic Balance tech

December 11th 2015

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for super clear and immersive sound. The headset comes with an adjustable and flexible microphone that can be removed should gamers not need it. The Striker is lightweight, its headband is made out of ‘soft protein’ leather for comfort, and its pivoting ear cups allow gamers to adjust them for extra comfort. On the PS4, players can use an in-line remote and mic attenuator switch to stop voice distortion. The headset is also available as a standalone product, without the Hitman branding. But the addition of Agent 47 would tie-in nicely with the upcoming episodic Hitman game, which is available to download from March next year on new-generation machines. A boxed version scheduled to arrive later in 2016.

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UPCOMING FEATURES JANUARY 2016

MARCH 2016

January 15th Q 50 things to look forward to in 2016 Q The Year of PC Q Territory Report: Asia Q International Factfile: Brazil Q MCV Awards Finalists Announced

March 4th Q MCV Award Winners 2016 Announced Q Indie Publishing Sector Guide: Who should release your game? Q International Factfile: France Q Territory Report: Eastern Europe

January 29th Q Recruitment: New Year, New Job Q How to be a pro gamer: eSports tech that every gamer will want (Accessories feature) Q International Factfile: Spain

March 11th Q Toys and Merchandising guide Q MCV Awards Winners Review Q International Factfile: Portugal

FEBRUARY 2016

Q

February 5th Q eSports Guide to 2016 Q International Factfile: Mexico February 12th Q Games Market Value 2016 Q Top 20 Independent Games Retailers Q International Factfile: Japan February 19th Virtual Reality is here: The battle for VR supremacy Q International Factfile: Iceland Q Territory Report: Latin America Q

February 26th The Games Media Special Q Understanding eSports: eSports Pro round-up 3 Q International Factfile: Belgium Q

March 18th Guide to Games Retail Q International Factfile: Holland March 25th Creative Agencies: Retail solutions, special edition and more Q International Factfile: Sweden Q


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Replication Warehousing

Outsourcing

Displays/P.O.S. Materials

D.L.C. / P.O.S.A. Cards

Special Print and Packaging Metal Boxes

Artbooks

LIS WELSH SEARCH & SELECTION LTD

OK MEDIA brings a wealth of expertise to the marketplace having previously been part of the Warner Music group. We have pro-actively developed extensive knowledge of the games industry working with companies of all sizes. Expectations are everchanging and we have recognised this through diversifying the services we offer. These now include limited edition print and packaging, pick pack and ship services from our new 12, 000 pallet capacity warehouse, licensing solutions for Germany, BluRay (3D) / USB stick duplication and serialised credit card style products (including point of sale activation cards), reverse logistics and a wide range of print and P.O.S. solutions. Flexibility remains one of our key assets for our clients – whether it be a fast turnaround for your replication requirements or going that extra mile to offer packaging to maximise your products’ sales.

Distribution

Tel: 01925 839700 www.amiqus.com ........................................................................................................

-\SÄSTLU[

AMIQUS

USB Sticks

OK Media Limited · Brookstone House · 6 Elthorne Road · London N19 4AG Doron Garfun kel · tel: +44 (0)20 7688 6789 · email: doron@ okmed ia.biz

www.okmedia.biz

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THIS COMPANY AND MANY MORE ONLINE NOW AT:


DIRECTORY

MCV DIRECTORY KEY CONTACTS Sony DADC ............................................ +44 (0) 207 462 6200

CREATIVE Fink ................................................................. info@finkcreative.com

GAMING ACCESSORIES DISC REPAIR

L3I.................................................................................. 01923 881000

Total Disc Repair ..................................+44 (0) 1202 489500

LIME DISTRIBUTION ............................................01622 845 161

DISTRIBUTION Click Entertainment ............................ +44 (0) 203 137 3781 Creative Distribution ......................+44 (0) 20 8664 3456 RATES

Curveball Leisure ................................... +44 (0) 1792 652521

£70 per two column box (100mm x 75mm). To run weekly for a minimum of 1 year. Please phone for other size and/or position requirements.

Enarxis Dynamic Media ............................. +302 1090 11900

DISC REPAIR

TOTAL DISC REPAIR

Tel: +44 (0) 1202 489500

December 11th 2015

Web: www.totaldiscrepair.co.uk

38

www.mcvuk.com


DIRECTORY

ENQUIRIES CONOR TALLON Tel: 02073 546000 ctallon@nbmedia.com

FINK

CREATIVE

DISTRIBUTION

CLICK ENTERTAINMENT

Artworking Mastertronic Brand Identity Ukie Localisation Rising Star Games Advertising BBFC Website Design Deep Silver Exhibition Bethesda Illustration Just Flight Appynation Digital Media IntentMedia Charity GamesAid Banners & Takeovers Konami Packaging Design Just Flight Email: info@finkcreative.com CREATIVE DISTRIBUTION

Tel: +44 (0) 208 6643456 ENARXIS DYNAMIC MEDIA

Web: www.finkcreative.com

Tel: +44 (0)203 137 3781

DISTRIBUTION

email: sales@click-entertainment.com

CURVEBALL LEISURE

Web: www.creativedistribution.co.uk

Tel: +44 (0) 1792 652521

DISTRIBUTION

SONY DADC

DISTRIBUTION

Web: www.curveball-leisure.com DISTRIBUTION

Empowering your creative business

Tel: +44 207 361 8000 games@sonydadc.com

www.sonydadc.com

Tel: +302 1090 11900

www.mcvuk.com

Web: www.enarxis.eu

Tel: +44 (0) 207 462 6200

39

Web: www.sonydadc.com

December 11th 2015


DIRECTORY

L3I

GAMING ACCESSORIES

Tel: 01923 881000

Web: www.logic3.com

LIME DISTRIBUTION

GAMING ACCESSORIES

Tel: 01622 845 161

Web: www.limedistribution.co.uk

ADVERTISE WITH US

WANT TO ADVERTISE IN OUR DIRECTORY?

CALL CONOR TALLON ON 01992 535647 OR EMAIL HIM AT CTALLON@NBMEDIA.COM

December 11th 2015

40

www.mcvuk.com


INSIDER’S GUIDE

INSIDER’S GUIDE SWIPE RIGHT PR

DIRECTORY

WHO? Specialism: PR Contact: T: 07732289047 W: www.swiperightpr.com E: kirsty@swiperightpr.com

Develop is the only dedicated publication for the UK and European games development community. It reaches over 300,000 subscribers every month.

Swipe Right PR’s Kirsty Enfield tells MCV about the firm’s rather busy first year in the business

FOR GREAT ADVERTISING OPPORTUNITIES, CONTACT CHARLOTTE NANGLE CNANGLE@NBMEDIA.COM

Tell us about your company. Swipe Right PR is the new kid on the block specialising in technology, gaming and entertainment. We started in January 2015 and have produced a series of campaigns that cover a far-flung field of entertainment from eSports to app launches to huge gaming conventions and even rooftop cinema pop-ups.

THIS MONTH’S DIRECTORY SPOTLIGHT: MHT TV GAME................................................................. gerry@mhtgame.com

What successes have you seen recently? In the last few months we managed the UK and Nordic specialist and mainstream media for the League of Legends World Championships, secured blanket coverage for the London Film and Comic Con and coordinated a media partnership between Imagine Publishing and Replay Events for its biggest UK event, PLAY Manchester. What are the biggest trends in the games industry affecting you right now? The rise of eSports is incredibly important to us and it’s something I’ve been passionate about for years. Over half our client base is eSports-related and with more and more companies looking to get involved, we will be able to offer a vital service as one of very few agencies specialising in this area. What are you looking forward to in games over the next 12 months? VR is always the first thing that To be included in the Develop Directory (which appears every month in Develop and now every week in MCV) contact cnangle@nbmedia.com

Kirsty Enfield, Swipe Right PR

comes to mind. Personally, I’m looking forward to seeing what companies such as Activision plan on doing with their eSports division, indie titles such as SkySaga and Gang Beasts have caught my eye in a big way and anything Adventure Time-related is always welcome. How did you choose your company name? Tinder. I would like to say something very PR about how we help media and consumers swipe right when it comes to choosing your brand, but honestly it was because it’s fun, catchy and relevant.

WANT TO FEATURE YOUR COMPANY IN INSIDER’S GUIDE? PLEASE CONTACT MJARVIS@NBMEDIA.COM OR CALL 01992 515 303

WWW.DEVELOP-ONLINE.NET www.mcvuk.com

We’re one of the few agencies that specialise in the eSports market.

41

December 11th 2015


FACTFILE UAE Sponsored by

INTERNATIONAL FACTFILE: UAE Population: 9,581,000 Capital City: Abu Dhabi Currency: UAE dirham GDP (Per Capita): $44,770 KEY RETAILERS Virgin Megastore, Geekay Games, Sharaf DG, Plugins, Toys R Us, Emax, Carrefour MAIN DISTRIBUTORS Red Entertainment Distribution, Pluto Games (LS2 Pluto), Viva Entertainment, Gameplay Entertainment, Geekay Distribution

THE United Arab Emirates is one of the richest countries on Earth, boasting the 19th highest per capital GDP in the globe. It is also home to a burgeoning games market, the 43rd largest in the world according to research firm Newzoo. The company reports that the UAE’s games market generates $159m in revenue per year. Research firm Euromonitor says the launches of PlayStation 4, Xbox One and New Nintendo 3DS have driven growth in the region, with PS4 dominating that particular market. The same report says that Sony has the largest share in the games market, accounting for 25 per cent of sales. Due to the region’s growing population, high disposable income and increase in tourism, physical retail – including that of games – is continuing to grow in the region. Euromonitor says that brick and mortar retail is still

December 11th 2015

TOP DEVELOPERS Tahadi Games, Game Power 7, DAO Games, Ubisoft Abu Dhabi NOTABLE GAMES FIRMS WITH A LOCAL OFFICE Microsoft, Sony, TwoFour54

Brick and mortar retail is still heavily relied upon in the United Arab Emirates. heavily relied upon within the UAE. One area that foreign companies need to be wary of is the country’s National Media Council Government department, which has banned games in the past for sexual themes and excessive violence. The country is also home to its very own trade show. GAMES 15 took place in September, with the likes of Video Games Live and the ESL contributing to the event. It is organised by ExtraCake, who also puts together the region’s Comic Con.

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UAE FACTFILE

MEANWHILE IN... ISRAEL Microsoft’ Israeli HoloLens team has been hit by a bout of layoffs as the company shifts its development focus to a new type of technology 60 jobs at Microsoft’s HoloLens team in Israel have been cut, the firm has confirmed. 30 of these job losses were full-time staff; the other 30 were contractors. Microsoft says that this decision was taken as the company shifts its focus to developing a new type of technology in the United States rather than on augmented reality in Israel. “As needed, we increase investments in some areas and de-invest in others, which results in the movement of jobs across

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43

the organisation, and at times, job eliminations,” a statement from Microsoft said. “Our priority is to work with and support employees affected by this decision.”

Microsoft’s HoloLens development in Israel has been based around a team of engineers who joined Microsoft after it acquired local start-up 3DV Systems in 2009.

December 11th 2015


INTERNATIONAL DISTRIBUTION Sponsored by

GLOBAL DISTRIBUTORS IF YOU ARE LOOKING FOR NEW PARTNERS OVERSEAS, THEN LOOK NO FURTHER

BELGIUM

CLD DISTRIBUTION Rue du Grand Champs 14 , B 5380 Fernelmont Belgium Tel: +32 81 83 02 02 Fax: +32 81 83 02 09 Email: infos@cld.be Web: www.cld.be home of www.dragonwar.eu & www.mawashi.eu

CYPRUS

SWEDEN

G3 GREAT GAMES LTD 4 Gregoriou Papaflessa Street, Office 101, Engomi, Nicosia 2414, Cyprus. Tel: +357 22 666612 Web: www.greatgames.com.cy

GAME OUTLET EUROPE AB PO Box 5083, S-650 05 Karlstad, Sweden Sales dept: ali.manzuri@gameoutlet.se Sales dept: andreas.lindberg@gameoutlet.se Purchase dept: hamed.manzuri@gameoutlet.se Purchase dept: david.nilsson@gameoutlet.se Web: www.gameoutlet.se

IRAN

BRAZIL Sony Music Entertainment Brasil # 1 Physical Distributor in Brazil Rua Lauro Muller n°. 116 – 40°. Andar Salas 4001 a 4003 Botafogo Rio de Janeiro RJ CEP. 22.290-160 Tel. +55 21 2128-0771 Fax: +55 21 2128-0747 Email : rodrigo.altieri@sonymusic.com Website: www.sonymusic.com.br | www.day1e.com.br

UAE

DC GAMES GROUP No.9, Hemmatian St., Takestan St., Sattarkhan Tehran, Iran Tel: +98-912-1014090 +98-21-44228670 Email: Bahizad@Doostan-Co.com Web: www.Doostan-Co.com

ALESAYI UNITED COMPANY Video Games Distributor in the Middle East, P.O BOX 16999 Jebel Ali Free Zone Dubai U.A.E. Tel: 00971 4 883 5960 Fax: 00971 4 883 5175 Email: marketing@alesayi.ae U.A.E. Website: www.alesayi.ae Group Website: www.alesayi.com

NORDIC

WORLDWIDE

WENDROS AB SWEDEN, NORWAY, DENMARK & FINLAND Jakobsdalsvägen 17 12653 Hägersten Sweden Phone: +46 8 51942500 Fax: +46 8 7466790 Email: HM@wendros.se LM@wendros.se Web: www.wendros.se

CLICK ENTERTAINMENT LIMITED Email: info@click-entertainment.com Web: www.click-entertainment.com Phone: +44 (0)203 137 3781

MCV WORLDWIDE Editorial: + 61 (0)424 967 263 Leigh.Harris@mcvpacific.com

Advertising: + 61 (0)417 084821 Joel.Vandaal@mcvpacific.com

WWW.MCVPACIFIC.COM

MORE DISTRIBUTORS AUSTRALIA AFA Interactive, Bluemouth Interactive, Five Star Games, Mindscape, Namco Bandai Partners, Turn Left Distribution BENELUX CLD Distribution, Koch Media, Gameworld Distribution B.V. CANADA E One, Importel, Just4Games, Solutions 2 Go, Vidéoglobe CYPRUS Access, Gibareio, Zilos, Nortec Multimedia CZECH REPUBLIC Cenega, Conquest, Comgad, Playman, ABC Data DENMARK Bergsala, Elpa, Impulse, Koch Media, Nordisk Film Interactive, Nordic Game Supply, PAN Vision FRANCE Big Ben, Innelec, Koch Media, SDO, Sodifa GREECE Zegatron, CD Media, Namco Bandai Partners, IGE, Nortec, Enarxis, Beacon HUNGARY CNG.hu/Cenega Hungary, CTC Trading, Magnew, PlayON, Stadlbauer ICELAND Sena, Myndform, Samfilm, Ormsson INDONESIA Maxsoft, Uptron, Technosolution IRELAND MSE Group, Baumex JAPAN Ajioka, Happinet, Jesnet NORWAY Bergsala, Game Outlet, Koch Media, Nordic Game Supply, Nordisk Film, Pan Vision POLAND CD Projekt, Cenega, Galapagos, LEM PORTUGAL Ecoplay, Infocapital, Koch Media, Namco Bandai ROMANIA Best Distribution SERBIA ComTrade, Computerland/Iris Mega, Extreme CC SPAIN Digital Bros, Koch Media, Namco Bandai Partners, Nobilis SWEDEN Bergsala, Koch Media, Namco Bandai, Nordic Game Supply, PAN Vision, Wendros, Ztorm (digital) UAE Red Entertainment Distribution, Pluto Games (LS2 Pluto), Viva Entertainment, Gameplay Entertainment, Geekay Distribution

TO ADVERTISE IN THIS SECTION PLEASE CONTACT CTALLON@NBMEDIA.COM December 11th 2015

44

www.mcvuk.com


www.mcvuk.com

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01925 286 900 www.vip-computers.com

VIP

01462 680 060 www.meroncourt.co.uk

MERONCOURT

01274 684 668 www.linkdistribution-uk.com

LINK DISTRIBUTION

01183 345 700 www.kochmedia.co.uk

KOCH MEDIA

01279 822 800 www.exertis.com

EXERTIS

0333 101 1000 www.entatech.com

ENTATECH

0208 664 3456 www.creativedistribution.co.uk

CREATIVE DISTRIBUTION

0203 137 3781 www.click-entertainment.com

CLICK ENTERTAINMENT

0121 625 3399 www.centresoft.co.uk

CENTRESOFT

0121 506 9585 www.advantagedistribution.co.uk

ADVANTAGE

9:00am – 5:00pm

8:30am – 6:30pm

9:00am - 5:00pm

8.30am – 5.30pm

9:00am-5:30pm

8:30am – 5:30pm

9:00am-5:30pm

8:45am – 5:30pm

8:45am – 5:30pm

DEC 22ND

9:30am – 5:45pm. 9:30am – 5:45pm.

9:00am – 5:00pm

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8.30am – 5.30pm

9:00am-5:30pm

8:30am – 5:30pm

9am – 5:30pm

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8:45am – 5:30pm

DEC 21ST

9.30am – 5:45pm

9:00am – 5:00pm

8:30am – 6:30pm

9:00am - 5:00pm

8.30am – 5.30pm

9:00am-4:00pm

8:30am – 5:30pm

Closed

8:45am – 5:30pm

8:45am – 5:30pm

DEC 23RD

Closed

Closed

Closed

9:00am – 1:00pm

8.30am – 5.30pm

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8:30am – 2:00pm

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DEC 24TH

Closed

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DEC 25TH

Closed

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DEC 28TH

9:30am – 4:00pm

9:00am – 5:00pm

8:30am – 6:30pm

Closed.

Closed

Closed

8:30am – 5:30pm

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8:45am – 5:00pm

8:45am – 5:00pm

DEC 30TH

Closed

9:00am – 5:00pm

Closed

Closed

Closed

Closed

8:30am – 4:00pm

Closed

Closed

Closed

DEC 31ST

Send your Christmas opening times to acalvin@nbmedia.com

IS YOUR COMPANY MISSING?

9:30am – 5:45pm

9:00am – 5:00pm

8:30am – 6:30pm

Closed.

Closed

Closed

8:30am – 5:30pm

Closed

8:45am – 5:00pm

8:45am – 5:00pm

DEC 29TH

Distributor Christmas Opening Hours

Closed

Closed

Closed

Closed

Closed

Closed

Closed

Closed

Closed

Closed

JAN 1ST

DISTRIBUTOR CHRISTMAS TIMES

December 11th 2015


OFF THE RECORD

OFF THE RECORD This week, MCV and Develop brought together the UK games industry to drink, be merry and celebrate what has been a fantastic year for the market PARTY LIKE IT’S 2015 ALL areas of the UK games industry came together at Holborn’s Sway Bar last week to toast a blockbuster year for the games market. We had developers drinking with publishers, retailers drinking with PR and marketing. There were also reports of Xbox UK’s team sharing a drink with their rivals at PlayStation. Just days after Black Friday. See, Christmas (and MCV) does bring people together. Enjoy these deceptively sober shots.

December 11th 2015

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www.mcvuk.com


OFF THE RECORD

Rise of the Tomb Raider – far better than I had anticipated.

Windward. I passed it over in its original incarnation circa 2012 on Desura, but WKH¿QLVKHGSURGXFWRQ Steam is my GOTY.

Tony Sibley @ToneSibley Transformers Devastation, without a doubt. Came out of nowhere and is brilliant Dying Light :+$7·6%((17+(*$0( 7+$7+$63/($6$17/< 68535,6('<287+( 02677+,6<($5" #GMGASKS

Roger Yates @magnusholstrom For me it was The Witcher III. The writing in this game gave me the feels in both the main and optional stories.

Ben @winstano Fallout 4 of course.

Doctor Yiggles @Doctor_Yiggles Life is Strange for sure. Such an amazing story.

Kirk McKeand @MckKirk dexzar @nielszor

Not A Hero for sure. Thought it might have been overwhelmingly corny but it’s one of my favourite games of 2015.

Her Story. It didn’t just surprise me it blew my mind. The most allconsuming two days in my gaming life.

Bae Grylls @TheAuracl3

Lara @Faangs_ Rocket League, for sure. It basically came out of QRZKHUHDQGLW¶VGH¿QLWHO\ the game I’ve had the most fun with this year!

VB @VonBlade

Aaron Jones @Aaron36CF

CONTACTS Christopher Dring

Kelly Sambridge

Andrew Wooden

Editor cdring@nbmedia.com

Head of Design and Production ksambridge@nbmedia.com

Content Director awooden@nbmedia.com

Ben Parfitt

Elizabeth Newton

Conor Tallon

Associate Editor bparfitt@nbmedia.com

Production Executive enewton@nbmedia.com

Senior Account Manager ctallon@nbmedia.com

Alex Calvin

Sam Richwood

Sarah Goldhawk

Staff Writer acalvin@nbmedia.com

Designer srichwood@nbmedia.com

Account Manager sgoldhawk@nbmedia.com

Matt Jarvis

Michael Canham

Contributor mjarvis@nbmedia.com

Finance Manager mcanham@nbmedia.com

Erik Johnson

Stuart Moody

US Correspondent ejohnson@nbmedia.com

Head of Operations smoody@nbmedia.com

Please address all enquiries to: Newbay Media, MCV, Saxon House, 6a St. Andrew Street, Hertford, SG14 1JA. Printed By: Pensord, Tram Road, Pontllanfraith, Blackwood, NP12 2YA

Saxon House, 6a St. Andrew Street, Hertford, Hertfordshire, England SG14 1JA

© Newbay Media 2015 All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or any information storage or retrieval system without the express prior written consent of the publisher. The contents of MCV are subject to reproduction in information storage and retrieval systems.

MCV is a member of the Periodical Publishers Association. For the 12 months ending December 2009, MCV had an average weekly net circulation of 8,045. MCV’s circulation is 100 per cent named and zero per cent duplicated.

Newbay Media specialises in tradededicated print and digital publishing for entertainment and leisure markets. As well as MCV, Newbay publishes Develop, PCR, ToyNews, Music Week, MI Pro, Audio Pro International and BikeBiz. It also has two onlineonly brands: Mobile Entertainment, dedicated to the growing mass market smartphone 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.

ISSN: 1469-4832 Copyright 2015

MCV has an exclusive media partnership with Famitsu – Japan’s leading video games analyst and news source

THE RETAIL ADVISORY BOARD Charlotte Knight GAME

Steve Moore Simply Games

Jennifer Johnson Don McCabe CHIPS Shop Direct

Jon Hayes Tesco

Sarah Jasper The Hut

Gurdeep Hunjan Simon Urquhart Sainsbury’s Microsoft

Dermot Stapleton Niall Lawlor GameStop Get Games

Phil Moore Grainger Games

Igor Cipolletta ShopTo

Phil Browes HMV

Robert Lindsay Games Centre

Stephen Staley Robert Hennessy Paul Sulyok James Cooke Gameseek John Lewis Green Man Gaming Argos

Craig Watson Dixons Retail

Editorial: 01992 515303 | Advertising: 01992 535647 | Fax: 01992 535648 ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTIONS United Kingdom £150 l Europe £175 l Rest of the World £250 To order your subscription via Visa, Mastercard, Switch or AMEX or to make changes to your subscription details, contact mcv.subscriptions@c-cms.com or call 01580 883848.

www.mcvuk.com

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December 11th 2015


Get your GDC package wrapped up in time for Christmas with Ukie Be part of the UK games community at the world’s number 1 games show 16-18 March 2016 Fully managed stand An easy exhibiting solution with the Ukie team looking after you Proven track record £9m of business done on the UK stand in 2015 Take advantage of early bird rates: Private tables & demo kiosks – prices from £4,000 + VAT Further discounts for members UKTI exhibitor grants worth £2,000 available

Contact alexa@ukie.org.uk 0207 534 0580 ukie.org.uk

Profile for Future PLC

MCV860 December 11th  

MCV860 December 11th  

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