The Last Word: November 27-December 1
Industry catches its breath after PS3, Wii launch; aftermath of new consoles dominates this week's headlines.
For hundreds of thousands of gamers, the past few weeks probably seem like a blur. While those who were lucky enough to get a Wii or PlayStation 3 buried themselves in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess, Resistance: Fall of Man, or another game for one of the consoles, the rest of the world moved on.
Nintendo revealed that the Wii had sold 600,000 units in its first eight days, and reiterated its target of 4 million Wiis available worldwide by the end of the year. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess was the console's best-selling game, with 454,000 copies gobbled up by consumers.
While Nintendo gladly trumpeted its sales numbers, Sony has been quiet on any information regarding figures for the PlayStation 3. This may be because industry analysts, as well as EA CEO Larry Probst, think Sony shipped at most only half of its 400,000-unit target.
Online auction site eBay wasn't so secretive, revealing that as of November 24, more than 14,500 PS3s were sold for an average of just over $1,300 using its service. Wiis, on the other hand, were moved more than 29,000 times for an average of $427.
Over on the Xbox 360, one gamer who had no time to wait in line for one of the new consoles broke an impressive milestone--the 100,000 Gamerscore mark. "StripClubDj" passed the mark on Tuesday, but instead of a ticker tape parade, the Xbox Live member was accused of cheating his way to the top.
On Thursday, Sony made waves by shuffling its executive deck. Ken "Father of the PlayStation" Kutaragi is the new chairman and group CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc., Kaz Hirai moves up to Kutaragi's former role of SCEI president, and Jack Tretton takes Hirai's former position of president and CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America.
One analyst ruffled feathers when he saw the moves as a sign that Sony would be getting out of the hardware game. "I cannot imagine a PlayStation 4," said Yuta Sakurai of Nomura Securities. Sakurai thinks Sony may be primed for a Segalike move away from gaming consoles to concentrate solely on software.
Speaking of software, it was bad news for Gran Turismo fans, as Sony decided to cancel the full version of Gran Turismo HD for the PlayStation 3. A small demo of GT HD will be made available for free download in Japan, but there's no word on a US version. The game's developer, Polyphony Digital, will now focus its efforts on Gran Turismo 5.
As for other future games, Microsoft announced that the first details on beta programs for two of its upcoming titles, Halo 3 and Shadowrun. Entry into the Halo 3 beta program begins Monday, and registration for the Shadowrun beta program is now open.
Oh yeah, and the Wii launched in Japan.
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