Wow — the universe made up for Monday’s news drought with a severe vengence:
- MindArk, developer of the MMO Project Entropia, is now issuing real ATM cards, which can be used with Versatel machines internationally. Virtual cash is apparently converted to real local currency automatically via a fixed exchange rate.
- The ESRB has changed its rating for Oblivion from T (teen) to M (mature), in response to the discovery of a “topless skin” in the game that modders can use to make game characters appear half-nude. We’re going to be feeling the effects of Hot Coffee for a long time, aren’t we?…
- And speaking of sex-avoidance: it seems that E3 has effectively banned an adult-themed MMO from appearing at the show. Every blogger on the planet has already beaten me to asking “sex is adult content, but killing people isn’t?”
- Some interesting news tucked away in EA’s quarterly earnings call:
- Pogo is being launched on Xbox Live.
- R&D spending on console titles will increase 5%-10%, mobile R&D will increase “significantly”, and online gaming R&D will increase by 80%-90%.
- Wholly-owned IP targetted to rise “significantly” above the current 40% of total (and, as if to make the poin, they’ve allowed their control of the James Bond franchise to lapse; Activision picked it up.)
- Net loss for the quarter was $16M. Net revenues for the year will be significantly below analyst estimates.
- The current Xbox 360 hardware to software tie ratio is around four games for each 360 sold,