NEWS - Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Xbox Live Arcade Retail Surprise

Encouraged by the success of Live Arcade, Microsoft is planning to bring some of its downloadable games to retail. Image Xbox chief Peter Moore is pushing to extend the Live Arcade brands to retail, arguing internally that original games like Geometry Wars, retro hits like Smash TV and casual games like Hardwood Hearts will extend Xbox 360's appeal to non-hardcore audiences. The company is seeking to offer the games to the 'other 50%' of gamers that have not signed up to Xbox Live, while using the titles to showcase the platform as a welcoming destination. Moore recently told industry sources that a retail SKU is being planned. Whether this will take the form of low-priced series of individual titles or, more likely, a compilation of some sort is yet to be determined. Microsoft today said it was not ready to discuss the plan, so issues such as pricing, packaging, and timing are unknown.


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