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Gaming Roundup: PS2 Vs. Wii; Why Microsoft Spared Lionhead; THQ’s Savings

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imagePS2 price cut aimed at the Wii: *Sony* dropped the price of the PS2 to $99, much to the dismay of consumers hoping that a price cut was coming for the PS3, but SCEA director of hardware marketing John Koller told Kotaku that the company wasn’t aiming at them. It was aiming for potential Wii buyers: “If you look at the technology and types of games launching for the Playstation 2, it lines up much closer to the Wii than the Wii does to next generation consoles,” he said. “And the Playstation 2 has a significant advantage in terms of broader consumer appeal.”

“Professionalism” saved Lionhead team from Microsoft’s axe: That’s according to Peter Molyneux, the Fable 2 studio’s founder (and current head). It was the only one of Microsoft’s internal game studios that wasn’t hit by layoffs; others like Rare, ACES and Games for Windows Live suffered significant cuts as part of the company’s first-ever round of mass staff reductions. Molyneux told it was because the team knew how to play the internal PR game: “So being professional, being nice to do business with, being super-passionate — when people come to look at saving money and where to direct their resources, it makes their decisions easier to take,” he said. Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) acquired Lionhead in 2006.

*THQ* reaches $220 million savings goal: The publisher set out to reduce costs for its fiscal year 2010, and the past few months of sweeping layoffs and studio closures have been effective. President and CEO Brian Farrell said profitability and “sustainable” growth were the goals moving forward. Release.