You know the gloves are off when an Xbox exec sounds off on your console's performance in Japan, and that's exactly what Peter Moore's been doing in an interview with GameDaily.
When asked about the importance of Japan in the latest console wars, Moore went on the defense with: "That's probably a better question for Sony, who's getting outsold by what, 6-to-1? You can bet that Sony built a long-term business plan about being successful in Japan and that business plan is crumbling."
Eyes probably started rolling at this point when Mr. Moore remembered that Xbox 360s aren't exactly rolling down the streets of Shibuya (unless they're being taken by the garbage truck).
"I built a business plan [for Japan]," he added, "but I don't think my expectations in Japan were anything close to what Sony's expectations are. They are failing. They're missing their plan by much more than I'm missing my plan."
The entertainment VP went on to question Sony's much-touted ten-year plan, saying that he's not exactly sure what it is. "It's like they just said, 'We have a ten-year plan' [and that's it]," he said.
As for the 360, he sees it outliving the original's four years. "I think the plan we have built, that calls for cost reductions in hardware, clearly gives us an advantage in price that actually allows us to get to [lower] price points much sooner than Sony will.
"They can have a 'ten-year plan' all they like, but it's executing that plan and getting to the mass market with price points [that matters], and I feel a lot closer to being able to do that than they do right now."
It's still early days for the PS3 in Japan though, and Sony has the mammoth console-flogging power of Final Fantasy XIII on the horizon. What does Microsoft have up its sleeve? Blue Dragon sold well, but certainly not enough to solve Xbox's Asian market problems.
At the moment only one thing is certain: Nintendo owns Japan.
July 17, 2007