Our stated strategy is to launch one to two titles targeted at the core gamer each year, each with the potential to become a long term franchise. In early January, we plan to release our new action game, Darksiders. Darksiders generated tremendous interest at E3 this year and was nominated for best action game by leading game publications IGN and Game Spy.
Our strategy for fighting games is to continue to dominate the fighting category by innovating and building on our flagship UFC and WWE brands. We plan to release games based on these franchises annually and upgrade features and technology for each franchise each year.
Racing is one of the biggest categories in gaming. We are the leader in off road racing with our MX brand which is approaching eight million units shipped to date. We believe this year’s game, MX versus ATV Reflex, will appeal to a broader audience than ever before.
Our strategy for our licensed kids games is to maximize the profitability of our existing licenses and re-invigorate our portfolio with new licenses that work well in the video game space. This year, we have already launched games based on Disney Pixar’s Up in North America. During the second and third quarters of fiscal 2010, we plan to roll out games based on Up as the movie hits theaters internationally.
We are pleased to be launching our new Cars Race-a-Rama games this holiday. We also plan to release new SpongeBob games this holiday, supported by Nickelodeon’s celebration of SpongeBob’s 10th anniversary.
In addition to publishing kid’s license games; we plan to increase our mix of mass appeal brands where there are proven and growing segments of consumer demand.
Our line up includes our first Drawn to Life games with the Nintendo Wii platform and a sequel to this top selling franchise on the DS. To date, we have shipped two million units of Drawn to Life games on the DS platform.
We view the fast growing online gaming market as a solid long term opportunity for THQ. The worldwide online gaming market is expected to grow at a five year compound annual growth rate of 16 per cent to $24 billion in 2013. Online games offer compelling, high margin business characteristics such as customer loyalty and retention, extended life cycles, multiple revenue models and broad geographic appeal.
Our online games strategy is to become a world wide leader in the development, operation and distribution of interactive online games. Currently, we are working with external partners with strong online experience to bring our established brands such as Company of Heroes and WWE into the dedicated online space. Our strategy is to pursue new game concepts and new business models in growing consumer segments.