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Electronic Arts Likely to Extend Take-Two Buyout Offer

50°
331w ago - The clock is ticking down on Electronic Arts's takeover bid for publisher Take-Two, and the company remains steadfast in its refusal to buckle. But the publishing giant doesn't seem ready to give up so easily.

When Electronic Arts made their initial offer of $25.74 a share in late February, a much higher premium than what Take-Two was trading for at the time, they apparently expected Take-Two to immediately jump on the offer, according to Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter in an article from Forbes. But when Take-Two chairman Strauss Zelnick stonewalled, EA was stumped.

Now, with Grand Theft Auto IV on the market and Take-Two shares hovering around $26.59 a share, the takeover attempt seems to be at an impasse. Though Rockstar, 2K Boston, and 2K Sports remain tempting targets, there are other issues that may complicate the deal.

Many analysts can't agree on how much Take-Two is really worth, and any takeover would probably necessitate a special deal with Rockstar. Founder Sam Houser has previously stated that working with a larger publisher would mean wanting a larger share of the profits.

Speaking at a Tuesday press conference, EA CEO John Riccitiello dismissed questions about Take-Two but reiterated that one of EA's core goal over the next three years...
 

PlayStation Network: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

50°
333w ago - Digital games downloads for consoles are in a fascinating position right now. We've previously discussed the state of console downloadable games - as well as a more detailed discussion of royalty rates for Xbox Live Arcade.

But the state of PlayStation Network for indie games is significantly less-discussed - actually, for some potentially interesting reasons. A starting point would be this interview with Sony's Scott Steinberg conducted at GDC, discussing Microsoft's announcement of Xbox Live Community Games. Steinberg's response to that:

"I thought it was interesting in the sense that what they were talking about we've sort of been doing for the last couple of years with PSN and giving smaller, start-up, entrepreneurial developers the chance to get in and make their games available on the PSN."

Well, yes and no. The biggest issue here - and what I find somewhat disingenuous of Sony - is that Microsoft is trying hard and genuinely to open up its platform to everyone (though they do have significant XBLA-related royalty issue and game complexity/submission headaches to work through).

And Sony is trashing them on the basis of PSN - which is actually somewhat of a closed platform right now, save some inspired and to-be-lauded cherrypicking.

The First-Party PSN...
 

PlayStation Day May 6th: Two Store updates set for next week!

50°
333w ago - From Lestrade (Community Team Leader) of the EU PlayStation Forums:

Hi all,

On 06 May 2008, SCEE will reveal a host of exciting content coming to PlayStation during the coming year. You'll be able to keep up-to-date with all of the news from the event over at PlayStation.com:

* PlayStation Day @ UK.playstation.com
* PlayStation Day @ IE.playstation.com

To mark the event, PLAYSTATION Store on PS3 will carry two updates instead of the usual one. Look out for great demos, including PS3 exclusive Haze, as well as a host of game trailers, expansion packs and videos of the press conference which will include a keynote speech by Kaz Hirai, President of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.

Check out the full line-up below:

06 May - PLAYSTATION Store (PS3)
Game Demos:

* Condemned 2
* Haze

Full Games:

* Blast Factor Advanced
* High Velocity Bowling
* Street Skater

Expansion Packs:

* Blast Factor Advanced Research
* High Velocity Bowling Character - Mike

Trailers:

* Buzz! Quiz TV
* Secret Agent Clank
* Siren Blood Curse

06 May - PLAYSTATION Store (PC)
Full Games:

* Street Skater

Trailers:
 

Activision boss concerned over Take-Two/EA merge

50°
333w ago - Activision boss Bobby Kotick has expressed concerns about the possibility of a merge between EA and Take-Two.

"That's concerning, sure," he told Reuters. "When you think about one company in control of the sports category, with no competition from anybody else, that could be a challenge."

That the deal would also knock the Activision-Vivendi deal out of the Guinness Book of Records is also playing on his mind, we'd wager.

The $18 billion deal currently stands as biggest in the history of video games, but it's expected that an EA / Take-Two merge would be worth significantly more. Now that GTA IV is out, talks between the two companies are expected to start soon.
 

Two teenagers arrested for stealing 23 copies of GTA IV

50°
333w ago - Two teenagers from Oakdale have been arrested on suspicion of trying to steal 23 copies of GTA IV worth almost $1,400 from a local Best Buy.

An employee seen the two teenagers waling out of the store with the games and the police apprehended them in a nearby parking lot.

To quote: Police apprehended two teenagers in a nearby parking lot. They said one, a 15-year-old boy, had eight copies of the video game and faces a misdemeanor theft charge.

The other, police said, was a 16-year-old boy who had 15 copies of the game and faces a gross misdemeanor charge.
 
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