Former Valve Software director of business development Jason Holtman has joined Oculus as its new "head of platform." Holtman served in his former role for eight years. In his new position at the virtual reality hardware company, Holtman will work closely with the head of platform engineering and head of worldwide publishing to lead the company's business development and forge new partnerships.
Zynga has lost a new bunch of executives this month, according to GamesBeat. Words With Friends lead Travis Boatman, head of acquisitions Terence Fung, and former head of the company's Ville franchise Steve Chiang, have all left Zynga. Unlike previous departures, these latest ones seem to be part of CEO Don Mattrick's plan to tighten up Zynga at its top-level. The company said in April that CFO Mark Vranesh was also leaving.
A new and extensive report from research firm Newzoo predicts that the global games market will reach $102 billion by 2017. The data comes from Zewzoo's "Global Games Market Report," which also offers a number of other interesting predictions about the global games industry and some of its (current) biggest players including Nintendo, Google, GungHo, SuperCell, Microsoft, and King.
Ubisoft announced its open-world hacking game Watch Dogs has sold-through more than 4 million copies in its first week of availability based on NPD and GFK data and internal estimates as of June 3, 2014. Watch Dogs is also the company’s best-selling game ever in week one period, according to internal estimates for Ubisoft’s Watch Dogs worldwide sales data for all platforms as of June 3, 2014.
According to a new report from research firm IHS Technology, more people than ever are watching eSports thanks to popular games such as League of Legends and Dota 2. Around 2.4 billion hours of eSports videos were watched during 2013, according to the report - nearly double the 1.3 billion hours watched in 2012. The report goes on to predict that 6.6 billion hours will be watched by fans in 2018, with China representing the largest market for online eSport views in the world, followed by the U.S. and South Korea.
A former creative director who worked on Bullet Storm and Painkiller for developer People Can Fly thinks that paying $60 in 2014 for a video game is ridiculous. In a recent interview with GII, Adrian Chmielar called that practice "a little insane."
Time spent playing video games is on the rise, especially the devotion to games on tablets and smartphones, according to new research from Nielsen. Homes with players ages 13+ spend more than six hours a week playing games on all game platforms. That's an increase of around 12 percent from the 5.6 hours a week in 2012. The data comes from the firm's annual Nielsen 360 Gaming Report.
Sony says that it plans to "rigorously pursue" PS4 sales - even if it is to the detriment of profits in the short term. The company's goal, according to Sony CEO Kaz Hirai, is to increase its installed base around the world. Hirai said that there is huge revenue potential that will come with expanding the reach of Sony's network.
The top selling game on Steam from May 18-24 was Wolfenstein: The New Order, knocking DayZ off the top spot of this week's Steam top sellers chart. Supergiant's Transistor also sold well enough to come out on top over Bohemia's Early Access title, grabbing the runner-up spot and relegating DayZ to third.
Pre-orders for Watch Dogs continue to keep the upcoming game near the top of the charts as well, while discount specials on Dark Souls and The Witcher franchises lifted the games back onto the list.
The top ten games are:
During a corporate strategy meeting this week (detailed in this document) Sony president and CEO Kazuo Hirai said that the PlayStation 4 is already profitable for Sony on a hardware unit basis.
Video game retailer GameStop reported earnings for the quarter ended May 3, last night after the closing bell. The retailer posted $2 billion in revenue, up 7 percent compared to the $1.87 billion it made in the same period a year ago. The company reported a profit of $68 million, an increase of roughly 24.5 percent compared to last year's net earnings of $54.6 million.
The Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences, organizers of the annual Dice Summit and the Dice Awards, announced that several new members have been appointed to its board of directors.
What's striking about these new additions is that they all come from the digital gaming space, highlighting the fact that the industry is shifting from the influence of retail to digital.
Last week we asked our readers, "Will the Removal of the Kinect Help Xbox One Sales?" Half of voters said that the new Kinect-free version of Xbox One will in fact help the company close the sales gap between the Xbox One and the PS4, but that Microsoft will not be able to surpass Sony by the year's end.
According to new data released by Super Data, GungHo's Puzzle & Dragons beats out Super cell's Clash of Clans in mobile ARPU (average revenue per user). Super Data claims that GungHo's game generates around $12 per user, while Clash of Clans generates only around $1.31.
Retail sales numbers for the month of April show that the PS4 edged out the Xbox One in sales, according to data from NPD Group. Sony's PlayStation 4 was the top-selling game console in the United States in April, making it the fourth month in a row the PS4 has outsold Microsoft's Xbox One, according to the NPD Group.
A new report on "core gamers" from the NPD group notes that 34 million people in the United States spend an average of 22 hours a week playing games. The data, which is based on a national online survey, also found that the majority of core gamers in the United States prefer to buy their games on physical discs rather than digitally. When the price is the same for digital and physical media, 74 percent of respondents said they would buy a physical disc over a download. Digital purchasing is up 5 percent compared to last year, NPD said.
Phoenix-based Najafi Cos. announced that its Toronto-based Cinram Group is expected to close the deal for JAI, the games software division of JVC Americas Corp. The deal is excepted to be complete within 30 days. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. JAI provides manufacturing and fulfillment for software and video-game publishers, as well as turnkey solutions for packaging, shipping and inventory management.
A few weeks ago we reported on the copious restrictions China has imposed on video game makers wanting to sell their wares in the country now that the console ban has gone bye-bye.
The co-founder of the studio behind successful iOS game The Room and The Room Two has some harsh words for the free-to-play space and cloning on mobile: it's not working.
Fireproof Games co-founder Barry Meade said recently in a Polygon column that since the 2012 release of his first game, The Room, his company has made over $5 million, and has sold 5.5 million copies of the game and its sequel combined. He says that publishers treat the game's success story as "an aberration at best" and continue to stick with the free-to-play model on mobile.
London Mayor Boris Johnson could bring back the London Games Festival according to a research proposal from the Mayor's Office obtained by GamesIndustry International.
In its first earnings report as a publicly traded company Candy Crush Saga maker King.com reported revenue of $606.7 million for the first fiscal quarter of 2014. The company claims that it currently has 143 million active users participating in its games on a daily basis. King's profits reached $127.2 million and mobile gross bookings for the quarter reached a record quarterly high of $480 million.
It's not a good time at Nintendo HQ this week. Today the maker of Wii U and 3DS revealed a 46.4 billion yen ($457 million) loss for its fiscal year ending March 31. This is the third year of annual operating losses in a row for the company.
The Wii U sold 2.72 million units over the last 12 months. Lifetime sales stand at 6.17 million units. That number is pretty disappointing for Nintendo if you consider how much longer it has been on the market. Sony's PS4, for example, has sold 7 million units since its released in Q4 2013.
While Australia's government pushes for an automated solution to speed up the work of the Classification Board (the government ratings agency in charge of classifying ratings for games and other forms of entertainment) in the country, civil liberties groups and anti-pornography groups in the country are sounding alarm bells.
While announcing the two year anniversary of the original DayZ mod for Bohemia Interactive's Arma 2, DayZ creator Dean "Rocket" Hall revealed that the stand-alone game based on that mod has hit a brand new sales milestone. According to Hall, DayZ has sold over two million copies since its release on Steam Early Access.
Spicy Horse founder American McGee has written an interesting list on Facebook explaining why he thinks the Xbox One will not be successful in China when it is released in the region this September. Earlier this week Microsoft announced that its latest console would finally be available to the lucrative Chinese gaming market, but McGee has lots of doubts that the console can be successful in a market dominated by free-to-play mobile and PC games and a thriving gray market.
Lionsgate is apparently jumping into the games business with both feet. The film studio behind hits like The Hunger Games, The Hurt Locker, and more announced today that it is launching a new gaming division with Peter Levin at the helm. Levin is the former CEO of the Nerdist. Levin will be responsible for driving the studio's expansion into interactive entertainment. The gaming division will also have the opportunity to make games using Lionsgate's stable of franchises or other brands.