The Making of Xbox 360

            
 
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Case Details:

Case Code : OPER061
Case Length : 20 Pages
Period : 2000-07
Organization : Microsoft Corporation
Pub Date : 2007
Teaching Note :Not Available
Countries : US
Industry : Gaming Console

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.



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"The winner in the next-generation console battle is likely to be the Xbox 360, which is the leader in North America, the world's biggest market."1

- Yoshiyuki Kinoshita, Research Analyst at Merrill Lynch, in 2006.

"This is not Xbox 2. This is not an incremental thing within an era, like PlayStation was the beginning of the 3D era, and PlayStation 2 was the second half of the era. This is a new era. This is a big jump -- kinda like vinyl to CD to iPod." 2

- J Allard, Corporate Vice President, Design & Development, Entertainment and Devices Division, Microsoft, in 2005.

Introduction

In September 2006, Peter Jackson3 (Jackson), Director of The Lord of the Rings4 trilogy and King Kong5, announced that he planned to create two interactive games for Xbox 360, a game console from Microsoft Corporation (Microsoft). The unique aspect of these new games was their episodic format. Jackson planned to create a series based on the popular Halo6 games. On his shift to games from movies, Jackson remarked, "More and more I'm looking forward to the release of games and not movies. I am more aware and excited about games. I do not have to keep delivering stories as movies - there are other things I can do. Technology is at a point where we can blend a lot of film storytelling with interactive entertainment."7

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Xbox 360, which was launched in December 2005, attracted serious gamers and other audience, owing to its simple design and convergence features.

It was a part of Microsoft's plan to move into the consumer's living room, and comprised a gaming console with several additional features like media center, photo archive, music download, Internet access and other services. According to Bill Gates (Gates), Co-founder and Chairman, Microsoft, "You can't just sell it as a convergence device. You gotta get in there because certain members of the family (i.e. teenage boys) think it's a must-have type thing. But the way to cement it is as a family experience. And the way that it really makes sense for Microsoft, and we justify this sort of circuitous route that we went down, is because of how it fits in the living room."8

The Making of Xbox 360 - Next Page>>


1]  Thomas Fredrickson, "Xbox and Wii to Break Playstation Domination: Analyst," www.ibitimes.com, November 14, 2006.

2] Dan Shoe Hsu, "A Full Revolution," Electronic Gaming Monthly, July 2005.

3] Peter Jackson is a New Zealand based film maker.

4] The Lord of the Rings is a fantasy novel written by JRR Tolkien. The film trilogy consisted of The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring, The Lord of the Ring: Two Towers, and The Lord of the Ring: Return of the King. The films were globally successful and won 17 academy awards.

5] Peter Jackson remade the 1933 classic King Kong in 2005. The film grossed more than US$ 500 million worldwide.

6] Halo Combat Evolved, popularly known as Halo is a first person shooter video game. The game developed by Bungie Studios was released in November 2001along with Xbox. Subsequently Halo 2 and Halo 3 were released.

7] Darren Waters, "Director Jackson Signs Xbox Deal," BBC News, September 27, 2006.

8] Lev Grossman, "Out of the Xbox," Time South Pacific, May 23, 2005.

 

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