Well, I can honestly say I didn’t see this one coming.
According to the UK office MCV Magazine, Sony – owners of the Ghostbusters IP – has struck a last minute deal to publish the Ghostbusters video game in all PAL territories – this means you, Europe.
A Sony spokesperson told the magazine that Sony will be publishing the PS3 and PS2 versions on June 19th, to coincide with the Blu-ray movie release a few days earlier – Atari will publish the Xbox 360, Wii, and DS versions “later in the year.” And if that’s not shock enough, the article claims a PSP version will follow from Sony in the Fall.
I will clarify, because I just know someone isn’t going to understand – as reported, this means Sony has struck a deal to ensure that the Sony SKUs of the game – PS3 and PS2 – are released this Summer in Europe and get a jump on the competitor platforms. As reported this DOES NOT affect North American releases, so until we hear otherwise…
Also, up is down. This just in; dogs and cats, living together. Let the mass hysteria begin. Thanks to Eric and James for the linkage.
[UPDATE] Atari sent out a press release on the matter today, and the facts at spelled out right at the top (emphasis mine);
– Published by Atari Inc. in North America and Coming to Xbox 360®, Wii™, PLAYSTATION®3 system, PlayStation®2 system, PC and Nintendo DS™ on June 16th, 2009 –
– Coming Exclusively to PLAYSTATION®3 system and PlayStation®2 system in Europe and PAL Regions on June 19th 2009 Published by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe –
– PSP™(PlayStation® Portable) Version Coming Worldwide Autumn 2009 –
The short version is “Everybody gets in in North America on June 16th. PS3 and PS2 owners in PAL territories get it June 19th, everything else comes later. And PSP version is out in the Fall.”
[UPDATE] Some notes, based on comments;
-PAL is “Phase Alternating Line”, but without getting too technical, all you need to know is that it’s a format for how TVs produce their pictures, used by a big chunk of the world, including Europe. North America uses NTSC.
-“Timed Exclusive” has a literal meaning. For Sony, they are releasing the Ghostbusters game on PS3 and PS2 exclusively, but there is a time-limit – by Fall, Atari will get to release the other formats and Sony’s exclusive period will be up.
-No, the Xbox/Wii versions are not pushed back in North America. Mind you, yesterday I didn’t think there’d be an exclusive anywhere, and here we are – but this has to be considered in territories and prestige. As popular as the franchise is around the world, it’s biggest fan-base is in the US, hands down. And it’s not to Atari’s advantage to strike a similar deal here. It IS to Atari’s advantage to strike this deal for other territories, as it means they aren’t footing the entire bill for distribution. So, today, I’m not surprised by much of anything, but I still find it unlikely any versions of the game will be pushed back in NA – if they were, that deal would pretty much have to be locked by now.
Stay Tuned. (what, nobody’s curious about the PSP comment?)