The road to XBOX ONE. Follow the journey

2009 Review - Q1

Ben Parfitt

As 2009 kicked off the UK High Street was still in the grips of what some are calling the worst recession in living memory. Retailers were going under, we lost Woolies from the High Street and a lot of people were getting annoyed by EUK’s warehouse.

On top of that we had the industry in uproar about the government’s Change4Life Campaign, Nintendo were making worrying noises about the Japanese market, Sony was losing money and Microsoft… well, things weren’t so bad for Microsoft, with Xbox 360 sales up year-on-year.

JANUARY

When we look back at the early 21st century recession, many will regard the passing of UK High Street stalwart Woolworths as the most symbolic victim
LINK

Nintendo starts the year by revealing that it has beaten its own record – Wii Sports surpasses Super Mario Bros to become the world’s most popular game
LINK

From zero to hero – Microsoft’s huge investment in its Xbox brand seems to be paying off with news that the 360 has passed the 28m unit sales mark
LINK

Sony starts 2009 hoping to forget the troubles it suffered in 2008, but SCEE president David Reeves’ first job of the new year is to ‘fess up to the mounting financial woes at the platform holder
LINK

It may not have the brand recognition of Woolworths, but Zavvi’s slow demise into nothingness points to a very tough 2009 on the High Street for entertainment retailers
LINK

After a long and successful relationship, developer Neversoft and skateboard legend Tony Hawk part ways in a move that signifies the end of an era and the reaching of a crossroads for one of gaming’s most profitable ever series
LINK

Talk of Eidos’ buyout intensify, with Warner touted as the likely candidate
LINK

There’s no sign of the turbulent waters that surround Take Two abating with news that COO Gary Dale is to depart the publisher
LINK

In a speech that would later this year come back to haunt him, one of MCV’s favourite publisher bosses John Riccitiello says that creativity and new IP are the key to future profits
LINK

The number of job loss stories is getting rather depressing at this point, with SCEE forced to issue a statement assuring its employees that their jobs, at least, are safe
LINK

The news isn’t as good at Microsoft, however, with the combined effects of the global recession and seismic changes in the PC software market leading to 5,000 job losses
LINK

One of modern gaming’s most successful franchises makes the bold decision to start over with news that EA has radical plans in place for its Need for Speed series
LINK

FEBRUARY

Can we really keep kidding ourselves that the games industry is recession proof? Maybe. After all, the global market was up 11 per cent year-on-year in 2008
LINK

Another major movie giant turns its attentions to gaming with the appointment of John Kavanagh as the head of Paramount’s video games division
LINK

Job losses at EA are now estimated to reach 1,100 as the former global publishing leader faces up to some serious restructuring
LINK

More bad news comes from THQ, which admits that 600 jobs are to be lost ahead of what it expects to be a ‘significantly worse’ Q4 than had been previously expected
LINK

Whilst major successes such as Street Fighter IV and Resident Evil 5 will make for a good 2009 in the end, Capcom’s year gets off to a shocker with a year-on-year decline in income of 95 per cent
LINK

It’s game over at Zavvi, with the closure of the retail chain leading to a painful 1,000 job losses on the UK High Street
LINK

When Nintendo boss Saturo Iwata claims there’s “something wrong” with the Japanaese video games market, you know there’s something wrong with the Japanese video games market
LINK

There’s something wrong with Wii Music, too, as Iwata admits that Miyamoto’s latest has failed to hit the mark
LINK

As if the job losses resulting from the demise of EUK aren’t bad enough, a whole new world of pain is about to ensue as administrator Deloitte sells off 1.1m games from EUK’s warehouse
LINK

The Eidos buyout is real, but it’s not Warner making the move – instead, the games industry is shocked by Japanese publisher Square Enix’s decision to swoop for the home of Lara Croft
LINK

Midway can no longer hide its troubles and is forced to beg the Bankruptcy Court to protect the publisher from the circling creditors
LINK

The war on piracy reaches a major milestone as the four men behind Swedish filesharing portal Pirate Bay are taken to court
LINK

Sony never wins format wars, right? Wrong. Blu-ray is not only here to stay, but it’s actually doing rather well
LINK

Buoyed by its successes elsewhere, the dormant power that is Sony finally wakes up and screams the words “The PSP will not die!” at the top of its voice with a slew of major IP announcements for the handheld
LINK

At times it feels like a futile struggle, but for what it’s worth Japanese retailers effectively ban the DS piracy tool R4 from their shelves
LINK

It’s all change at Sony as CEO and chairman Howard Stringer is appointed Sony president, with Kaz Hirai tasked with overseeing its PlayStation operations
LINK

MARCH

Zavvi lives on, but the real news is the entry into the market of a very serious and determined new competitor – The Hut
LINK

Capcom gets its highest profile backer yet as the BBFC wades in to defend Resident Evil 5 against accusations of racism
LINK

Sony fanboys rejoice as the platform holder’s answer to Xbox 360 Achievements arrive in the form of PlayStation Trophies
LINK

The warning sirens are blazing a full volume as Midway’s then owner Mark Thomas admits that the publisher is “haemorrhaging cash at an alarming rate”
LINK

The High Street’s monopoly on trade-ins is threatened with news that the North American arm of Amazon has began allowing its customers to swap their old games for credit
LINK

The government’s Change4Life campaign annoys pretty much everyone in the UK games industry with an ad that pairs gaming with early death
LINK

In a totally unprecedented move, Nintendo opts to increase the trade price of the Wii in the UK, though it refuses to take any responsibility for the possible affect it might have on the High Street price
LINK

The platform holder’s plans go further than simply charging more for its consoles – now Nintendo wants a serious piece of the digital download market
LINK

Another platform holder thinking digitally is Sony – it has plans to release its future PSP titles on both UMD and as a download simultaneously
LINK

It’s 50m sales and counting as Wii’s success seemingly knows no bounds
LINK

Can the PS3 outsell the Wii? Don’t be daft – it can barely outsell the Wii balance Board!
LINK

To COD or not to COD? The hype machine turns over its starter engine as the world debates whether or not Activision will ion fact drop the Call of Duty name from the upcoming Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
LINK

Square Enix’s acquisition of Eidos is complete in a move that ushers in a new era on both sides of the globe
LINK

50m global Wii sales may be impressive, but Xbox 360’s passing of the 1m sales barrier in Japan is truly a notable achievement
LINK

Advertisement

Tags: This article has no tags

Follow us on

  • RSS