Saturday, March 22, 2008

US government begins investigation on Blu-ray patent

The US International Trade Commission (ITC) has voted to investigate a patent complaint against select short-wavelength light emitting diodes, such as the ones used by Blu-ray players. The complaint was filed by Gertrude Neumark Rothschild of Hartsdale, NY, on February 20, 2008, and alleges that some aspects of Blu-ray technology infringes on patents.

Thirty companies, including Sony and other Blu-ray player manufacturers, are listed as respondents. The ITC investigation doesn't necessarily mean any foul play has been committed -- the ITC states they have "not yet made any decision on the merits of the case." This could be over quickly, or Sony can expect yet another long-haul legal battle over its technologies.

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This Is Why Midway's CEO Is No Longer Midway's CEO [Midway]

 Going off naught but anecdotal evidence, it's easy to see why Midway CEO David Zucker was binned (as if he actually "resigned") earlier this week. Guy didn't do a very good job, and leaves Midway in worse shape than when he came in. But that's just a general assumption: it's a lot more fun to look at some numbers showing just how shitty the company have become since 2004, when Sumner Redstone bought a majority stake in the company (which ties in nicely with Zucker's tenure, which began in 2003):

- Midway have lost around $300 million dollars since 2004

- Their revenue growth from 2004 through to 2007 was -3%

- The increase in net losses from 2004 through to 2007 was at least 399%

- Midway's stock value has dropped by 79% since 2004

- Sumner Redstone have lost over $500 million in equity since taking over Midway

Midway CEO David Zucker canned after Sumner Redstone stacks up huge losses [Variety]

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Chinese Game Market Grew to $1.66 Billion In '07 [China]

 Pearl Research has released their latest report and forecast on China's market and has come up with some pretty astonishing numbers. A quick rundown: the market grew 60% in '07, reaching $1.66 billion; they predict the market will exceed $3 billion by 2010; domestic games are getting as many as 1.66 million concurrent users. It's no secret the market is huge in China and continues to grow, but those are some pretty impressive numbers (and a lot of zeros). The full press release, with some extra details, is after the jump:

Games Market in China Grew 60% to $1.66 Billion in 2007, Expected to Exceed $3 Billion in 2010, According to Pearl Research

SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Pearl Research forecasts the online games market in China will exceed $3 billion in 2010. The market grew more than 60% to reach $1.66 billion in 2007. These findings are contained in Pearl Research's exclusive 130-page "Games Market in China" study.

Allison Luong, Managing Director of Pearl Research said, "The year 2007 exceeded expectations with the market growing more than 60%, driven by compelling and diverse content, free-to-play games, and rising demand for leisure and technology products. Chinese-themed and advanced casual games are expected to drive revenues in 2008 and beyond."

"A key trend to track in 2008 is rising average-revenue-per-user (ARPU). Certain online games are reaching $7 to $12 a month in average-revenue-per-user, significantly higher than past averages of $5 or less per month. I believe there is still room for average-revenue-per-user to grow, as game operators enhance monetization efforts from free-to-play games," said Allison Luong.

Pearl Research's key findings:

China's most popular online game, Netease's "Fantasy Westward Journey" has 1.66 million peak concurrent users, followed by Giant's "Zhengtu Online" with 1.52 million peak concurrent users. Successful MMORPGs can be highly profitable. Game operator Giant Interactive generated the majority of its $209 million revenues from one title, "Zhengtu Online."

Game operators in China experienced strong revenue growth in 2007. The biggest gainers were game operators Shanda (up 49% to $338 million), Giant (up 274% to $209 million), The9 (up 30% to $175 million) and Perfect World (up 593% to $95 million). Coinciding with this revenue growth was a wave of initial public offerings (IPOs) by game operators Giant, Perfect World, NetDragon and KingSoft

The study also contains highlights from Pearl Research's Phoenix Generation research initiative, consisting of more than 200 one-on-one, personalized interviews conducted with Chinese youth. One key finding is that games are a social phenomenon, with gamers often playing casual games to connect with friends and flirt with others. Gamers cite cheating and account thefts as a top reason for abandoning a game and seek out game operators with a reliable reputation.

Pearl Research's "Games Market in China" study provides an in-depth analysis of the Chinese games market. The report contains 2006 to 2011 forecasts; inhibitors and drivers to growth; deep marketplace analysis; profiles of key market players; and strategic conclusions. Please call (+1) 415-738-7660 or email research (at) to inquire about this report.

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New Import Title - Karous Wii - Arriving Thursday

Awesome Re-Release!!!!

Comes with 3 games total!!

Chaos Field 
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Wii - Okami - Arriving Thursday!

Hey everybody! Okami is finally being ported onto the wii! The good thing about
this version is that it will support 480p and widescreen output. IGN has
definitely confirmed that the motion sensing of the remote will be used to perform
the Celestial Brush features within the game. The game is almost identical
to the ps2 version, but w/ the addition of remote and nunchuck, you're now able
to skip cutscenes. Will definitely be worth the purchase if you missed out on
the ps2 version. At e3 2005, the ps2 version won 1up's best ps2 game,
2nd best game of show, and 3rd best action game, IGN's best ps2 game of show,
and runner-up for best of show and most innovative design, and g4tv's x-plays
most original game. Gamespy also recognized it as the 5th best game showing
at e3.

Jump to our website's Wii Okami Page: Click Here
- $38.99

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