The entertainment war

All sectors of the entertainment industry are gearing up for the rush of gift shoppers over the holiday period. As reported last week (MCV 14/10), the UK games industry is planning its biggest spend to date promoting hardware and software.

But with overall retail sales having been slow through the year to date, the stakes are even higher this year than in the past – and the music and DVD giants will both be lining up their big guns, backed heavily, in order to counter their rivals in the games market.

It’s good news all round for entertainment specialists such as Virgin, HMV and Woolworths, plus the grocery giants. But the games trade is holding its breath that the release of the usual Q4 software blockbusters, plus the arrival of the PSP, Xbox 360, DS and GB Micro formats, will deliver the promised biggest-ever Christmas for interactive entertainment.

Indeed, HMV CEO Alan Giles highlighted the “excellent growth prospects” for games this Christmas at the chain’s recent AGM, while Virgin Megastores is also bullish about the sector. “Virgin is very committed to games and this coming Christmas we have a strong line-up that complements both our music and DVD line-ups,” head of games buying James Cooke told MCV.

“We ran our first ever Games Christmas Conference last week with the support of the leading games publishers and have secured a fantastic portfolio of new releases including four new games consoles.”

The Christmas battle for the consumer pound starts here…

Music
Intensive Care (Robbie Williams)
Aerial (Kate Bush)
Confessions (Madonna)
Keep On (Will Young)
Face To Face (Westlife)
Memory (Rod Stewart)
Now 62
Ticket To Hell (The Darkness)
Rapture (Deep Purple)
#1s (Destiny’s Child)

DVDs
Star Wars Episode III
Batman Begins
War of the Worlds
Madagascar
Charlie & The Choc Factory
Extras Series 1
Lost Season 1
Doctor Who Boxset
Fantastic Four
Little Britain Series 1&2

PC
Call of Duty 2
Age of Empires III
Quake IV
F.E.A.R.
City of Villains
Elder Scrolls IV
Ghost Recon: Warfighter
Advent Rising
Black and White 2
The Sims 2 Xmas Pack

Xbox/Xbox 360
Condemned
Kameo
Perfect Dark Zero
Project Gotham Racing 3
Dead or Alive 4
Shadow the Hedgehog
FIFA 06: Road to World Cup
King Kong
Ridge Racer 6
Amped 3

PS2
King Kong
From Russia With Love
50 Cent: Bulletproof
The Chronicles of Narnia
True Crime: New York City
Need for Speed Most Wanted
Resident Evil 4
The Sims 2
Singstar ‘80s
GUN

Handheld
Star Wars Battlefront II
GTA: Liberty City Stories
Prince of Persia
World Rally Championship
Pursuit Force
Mario Kart DS
Kirby: Power Paintbrush
Sonic Rush
Harry Potter: Goblet of Fire
Tony Hawk’s Sk8land

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