NEWS - Tuesday, March 20, 2007

PS3 game Devil May Cry 4 defects to Xbox 360

The game was already in development for Sony Corp.’s Playstation 3 video game console. Each version is said to take advantage of individual platform strengths. "Capcom is committed to making its titles available to as wide an audience as possible, and has been building its technology base to meet that goal," said Mark Beaumont, executive vice president, officer and head of Capcom consumer software publishing in the Americas and Europe. "This announcement means that PS3, Xbox 360 and PC owners worldwide will be able to experience the latest installment of one of Capcom’s pillar franchises." The PS3 has held lower-than-expected sales at retail due to production problems and high retail pricing. As game budgets balloon to multi-million dollar projects, game publishers have loosened exclusivity deals with hardware manufacturers to generate maximum revenue per product. The defection of Devil May Cry 4 to rival consoles is a business strategy that has caused the PS3 to lose several formerly exclusive game titles. In Dec., Sega announced that Virtua Fighter 5 would be released to the Xbox 360 in summer 2007. The game was previously announced only for the PS3. Virtua Fighter 4, the last installment of the series, was exclusive to the Playstation 2. In Sept., Ubisoft announced that the action title Assassin’s Creed would be released for the Xbox 360 after a PS3-only debut. The most substantial exclusivity loss at Sony came at E3 2006 when Microsoft announced that the latest edition of Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto series would appear on the Xbox 360. The series had been exclusive to the PS2 and helped the console generate hefty hardware sales in its lifetime. Still, game publishers have entirely eliminated exclusivity deals in recent months. Capcom released Dead Rising in Aug. and Lost Planet: Extreme Condition in Jan. only on Xbox 360. Both titles have generated solid sales in worldwide markets. Ubisoft published the first-person action game Red Steel exclusively to Nintendo Co.’s Wii in Nov. In addition, EA in Feb. said that it will develop an exclusive game called MySims to Wii and the Nintendo DS.

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