Slave to the Game

Filling you in on the oddball gaming news

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Operating losses in Sony's video game unit for the year ending March 2008 could potentially exceed 100 billion yen ($876 million) -- twice as much as the 50 billion yen ($438 million) originally projected, a Sony spokeswoman told Reuters.

In its recently-announced financial results, Sony posted an operating loss of 96.7 billion yen ($841 million) due to the cost of PS3 hardware, even though sales of the console had reached 1.31 million units.

Despite these losses, the company's second-quarter financial results showed rebounding profits of 73.7 billion yen ($645 million) on the success of its TVs, PCs and cameras.

According to the report, Sony's electronics operations are beating target expectations for the same period, and the spokeswoman said that profits from the company's LCD TV business will help buttress the electronics division's profit margin to 5 percent in the year ending March 2008.

Speaking in an interview with The Guardian, Will Wright has stated that his upcoming and much delayed Spore title will come out on Wii as well as the previously projected PC release. This follows comments made recently by Wright where he said that the Wii is the only truly next-gen console.

Wright said that what makes Nintendo's Wii a truly next-gen machine is its ability to appeal to a previouslty untapped demographic of gamer. This sets it apart from the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 which, according to Wright, are merely updates of their previous-gen counterparts.

Spore has seen considerable delays. Originally slated for a 2007 release, the title was then knocked back to an uncertain 2008 ETA. The central principle of Spore has gamers building life from the primordial soup right up to a heaving civilisation. Spore is set to feature a number of unique features, such as the ability to direct the evolutionary path of your budding creatures.

Fresh off bumper earnings, Nintendo Co. ruled out a price cut for its smash-hit Wii video game console Friday and announced the company will begin selling the Wii in China next year.

Nintendo President Satoru Iwata also unveiled a gift-giving feature that will allow users to send each other games over the Internet.

Profits at Nintendo have surged on the runaway success of the Wii and the portable Nintendo DS machine in North America, Europe and Japan, forcing Sony and Microsoft to slash console prices in a desperate catch-up bid ahead of the holiday season.

Iwata said the company was struggling to meet demand of the Wii, and a price cut was out of the question. The Wii sells for $249.99 in North America, 249.00 euros in Europe and 25,000 yen in Japan – all less than Sony’s PlayStation 3 or Microsoft’s Xbox 360.

The qualifying event is over and 10 lucky winners have raced their way to form the Middle East’s first Microsoft Xbox 360 racing team. The team will compete in the upcoming 24 Hour Endurance Challenge Kart Race to be held on October 26 and 27at the Dubai Autodrome. The qualifying event tied up with the recent launch of Project Gotham Racing 4 on the 12th of October, exclusive to Microsoft Xbox 360.

The qualifying challenge was held at the Knowledge Village Food Court where racing enthusiasts gathered to compete on the custom built multiple screen car racing pod running the newly launched ‘PGR 4’. Racers with the top 10 best lap times registered were guaranteed a place on the Microsoft Xbox 360 Team.

The latest installment of the best-selling and award-winning racing franchise is set to redefine the experience “PGR” fans have come to know and love. Featuring a unique, exciting racing experience where dramatic racing action is captured in breathtaking cinematic style, “PGR 4” is capturing the attention of racing fans everywhere. The all new addition of motorcycles adds a new dimension to the “PGR” driving experience by allowing gamers to compete and pull off amazing driving maneuvers not possible on four wheels.

“It was a great turn up, with more than a hundred drivers making their way to Knowledge Village to test their driving skills on the PGR 4 racing pod,” said Aman Sangar, Product Marketing Manager, Microsoft Entertainment and Devices Division Middle East. “It is a proud moment for Microsoft Xbox 360 to be represented by these young ambitious drivers in the upcoming 24 hour Go-Kart race.”

Driving his way to pole position was Mohammad Zunayed. The rest of team includes James Mummey, Alexander Antoniaiades, McNeil Lopez, Matt Mccluskey, Michael Gilmour, Chris Milbourne, Prateik, Zoheb Somjee, and Eduardo Bauzon.

A Crandall Avenue man told police Saturday morning he shot another man to death after an argument over a video game because he wanted ‘‘to protect me and my family.’’

Allen K. Frost, 37, 1012 Crandall Ave., is in Mahoning County Jail following the shooting death of a man who police would not identify to reporters.

When police arrived at Frost’s home shortly before 10:30 a.m. Saturday, they found Frost on the front porch talking on the telephone and the body of another man in the living room.

The male victim was found lying face up with his legs bent under him, the report states. He had been shot in the head, the report states.

Frost told police he and the man began arguing about losing a video game and according to the report, during the argument Frost shot the man ‘‘to protect me and my family.’’

Police found a .38 caliber revolver in a bedroom, the report states.

The shooting death was the fourth homicide in Youngstown last week and the 28th this year.