Blake Snow

content advisor, recognized journalist, bodacious writer-for-hire

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Off to Santa Monica for E3

I’m off to Santa Monica tomorrow to cover the Electronic Entertainment Expo again this year. It’s a lot smaller now because the conference ballooned into a pit of money and glut last year, but it should still be a lot of fun, and I can’t wait to get my hands on some fresh games. As a refresher, here’s what happened since last year’s E3:

  • Nintendo’s stock has doubled to almost $50/share off unthinkably high Wii sales. The thing really is great; I had two 80 year-olds at my house today having a blast on it. It doesn’t fully satiate my core gamer appetite, but some big titles are expected later this year.
  • Sony is in a world of hurt; their PS3 continues to struggle, and it is expected to continue that way despite its newly reduced $500 price, about $200-$300 more than it should cost for a gaming machine. (A majority of people still don’t consider it a blu-ray player and/or a computer and largely never will because it’s sold in the video game department at retail. Oh convergence!)
  • Microsoft is doing solid in terms of attracting new games and establishing a respectable install base, but even they can’t catch a break. They’ll lose a billion dollars this year on service repairs alone due to abnormally high 360 failure rates. That’s what you get for outsourcing both your manufacturing and design. Add that hefty chunk to the already estimated 5 billion in total losses since launching the first Xbox, and investors have every right to be pissed, regardless of Billsoft’s absurdly deep pockets.

Games I’m most excited for: Assassin’s Creed, Mario Galaxy, Metroid Prime 3, Skate, Little Big Planet, and a handful of fresh new titles in that order. Predictions: Wii will outsell both Xbox 360 and PS3 by early next year, Xbox 360 will get a price cut to $350 off the heels of the PS3 drop, Halo 3 will be the biggest selling game of 2007, and Sony will continue to underwhelm. All in a year’s work of the $14 billion dollar industry.

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