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     Fun: Halo 2 released for Xbox players
    Games: Computer Games
    Halo has been the most popular Microsoft Xbox game for three years running, with 5 million copies sold. The Microsoft Xbox is fighting it out with the Sony PlayStation 2 and Nintendo GameCube for game console dominance.

    Master Chief gets to be the first person shooter again in the Halo world, a homage to Larry Niven’s Ringworld science fiction novels. The biggest advantage that Microsoft kicked off is the Xbox online and the ability to run different types of games with other players from around the world. Excellent reviews for Halo can be found on the IGN web site.

    Halo and now Halo 2 were both written by Bungie, a software company acquired by Microsoft in 2000. Bungie (http://www.bungie.net) became a wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft, relocating to the Redmond, Washington campus. Bungie also owns the rights to Myth and Oni games.

    It is well known in the industry, and even stated in Microsoft’s SEC filings, that a hit game is the key to console sales. Halo 2 certainly will make inroads in time for the Christmas shopping season. The media buzz for Halo 2 has been overwhelming. The print and broadcast outlets are trying to tie in news segments about video game addiction for the November sweeps period. (Hey, Everquest is not called “Evercrack” for nothing!)

    PlayStation 2, which debuted in Japan in March 2000, came out before Xbox (November 2001), and still commands a large lead of the console market with 58% of the installed base, compared with 23% for Xbox and 19% for Nintendo's GameCube, (according to Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter, who covers the video-game industry.)

    According to TheStreet.com, The Halo 2 sales will show up in Microsoft's money-losing home and entertainment division. The division's operating loss shrunk substantially in the September quarter, to $142 million from $273 million a year earlier, partly because of an increase in software sales. Microsoft generates a profit from video-game software sales but loses money on every sale of the Xbox console.

    My own research into Microsoft’s September SEC filing states that they have revenues of $2,870 million (U.S.) with an operating loss of $894 million (U.S.). It is no secret that Microsoft is spending much money to stay in this market. And also, their home entertainment division is propped up by their cash revenues and business software profits. In the long run, Microsoft hopes to crush their competitors in this computer segment much as they have done in the business world with desktop operating systems and server software.

    Experts predict that with the release of Xbox 2, This Microsoft division will become profitable in 2007.

    Bungie Store and Xbox paraphenalia can be purchased on line: http://www.bungiestore.com/
    http://www.xboxgearstore.com/
      
    Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2004 @ 07:29:33 UTC by BB
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