Microsoft Taking Xbox 360 Core to Japan

Microsoft’s Xbox 360 console system hasn’t exactly been given a warm reception in Japan since their launch late last year. Although Microsoft doesn’t break down Xbox 360 sales to international market segments, sales figures for the system in Japan have been pegged at fewer than 160,000 units since the consoles entered the Japanese market in late 2005. To date, Microsoft has sold about about 5 million Xbox 360 consoles worldwide.

Now, Microsoft hopes to increase the appeal of its gaming system to Japanese consumers just before Sony launches its PlayStation 3 console this November by rolling out the Xbox 360 Core system in Japan at abou ¥29,800, or about $255, which is about $85 cheaper than the standard version.

Why now? Sony has just announced the rollout of PlayStation 3 consoles will be much smaller than originally forecast, with the consoles only hitting the Japanese and North American markets in limited quantities in November 2006, and only reaching Europe in March 2007. Microsoft hopes to tap into frustration of Japanese gamers who cannot get their hands on a PlayStation 3, tempting them with a next generation gaming console which is widely available and substantially cheaper than Sony’s offering.

Microsoft’s Xbox 360 Core system can play most Xbox 360 games, but doesn’t include a 20 GB hard drive and other accessories bundled with the standard Xbox 360 system. Users can add on hard drives or smaller capacity memory sticks to save games: Microsoft’s 20 GB hard drive will cost about ¥9,500 (about $80), while memory sticks will be about ¥3,200 (under $30).

For its part, Sony just announced price cuts to its existing PlayStation 2 console in Japan, trying to clear inventory and whet the appetites of remaining gamers prior to the PlayStation 3 launch.

Gaming

Treyarch takes over 2020 Call of Duty, will make Black Ops 5

Treyarch is taking over development for the 2020 Call of Duty, which will be Black Ops 5, Kotaku reported. Raven was initially leading the project alongside Sledgehammer, but the two studios frequently got into arguments.
Gaming

You're not a true fan without these Nintendo Switch exclusives

Who doesn't love a good Nintendo game? If you're looking for great first-party titles for your Nintendo Switch, take a look at our list of the very best exclusives available right now.
Gaming

World of Warcraft Classic beta testers confusing old-school features for bugs

Blizzard released a "not a bug" list for World of Warcraft Classic, as beta testers apparently kept reporting intended features. The list includes the "Your skill in Protection increased to 15" message that appears upon leveling up.
Gaming

Next Apex Legends patch will fix Gibraltar’s sticky shield and hit registration

Respawn is set to roll out a new patch for Apex Legends early this week. The update will look to fix several issues in the game, including Gibraltar's sticky shield, the Fortified passive ability, and incorrect hit registration.
Gaming

Your PlayStation 4 game library isn't complete without these games

Looking for the best PS4 games out there? Out of the massive crop of titles available, we selected the best you should buy. No matter what your genre of choice may be, there's something here for you.
Gaming

Need a new Switch game? These will scratch the itch without emptying your wallet

Besides its great AAA games, the Nintendo Switch also has plenty of cheaper options. Here are some great Nintendo Switch games under $20, including some new versions of old classics.
Emerging Tech

How Super Mario, Magic: The Gathering, and PowerPoint are low-key supercomputers

What if the creators of Super Mario World, PowerPoint, and even Magic: The Gathering had accidentally created tools hiding a general-purpose computer in plain sight? Turns out they have.
Gaming

Red Dead Online poker missing in some parts of the world due to gambling laws

The massive update for Red Dead Online as it left beta added poker, among many other things, to the online component of Red Dead Redemption 2. Some players can't access the card game though, due to the gambling laws of their country.
Gaming

Minecraft may be best-selling video game in history with 176 million copies sold

Minecraft has sold more than 176 million copies since it was launched 10 years ago, across all platforms where it is available. The milestone may make it the best-selling video game in history.
Gaming

Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2 publisher opts out of Epic Games store sale

Epic Games launched its first major sale and made the decision to cover the cost of discounts, but a couple of publishers opted out anyway. One withdrawal, involving Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2, seems to be rooted in a…
Gaming

More than 40 studios at Ubisoft are working on improving accessibility in games

Ubisoft's accessibility project manager David Tisserand shared details on a new accessibility initiative during Global Accessibility Awareness Day. Here's what's to come in the future from the company.
Gaming

From platforms to games, here's how Google Stadia and Nvidia GeForce size up

Google Stadia will have some stiff competition in Microsoft's Project xCloud, but that isn't the only game streaming service. We compared Google Stadia vs. Nvidia GeForce Now to see the differences and features.
Gaming

Apex Legends patch waves goodbye to Gibraltoad, addresses hit-detection issues

It has been quiet for a while, but the Apex Legends developers are gearing up for a patch update in the coming weeks. A Respawn employee took to Reddit to share the planned changes for the next major patch.
Gaming

PlayStation Productions is taking inspiration from Disney’s Marvel films

Sony announced PlayStation Productions, a studio dedicated to bringing the gaming properties to film and television. The new studio is aiming to model things after Disney's Marvel Cinematic Universe.