Acti-Blizz CEO Bobby Kotick is confident that his company will weather the economic crisis - and promises that the publishing giant will take a new focus for Nintendo's Wii, delivering better and "more unique" titles for the plucky little console.
Speaking with Reuters, Kotick specifically pointed to Asian and European markets and the Nintendo Wii as places where the company could tighten up shop and see genuine growth.
Despite the overwhelming success that the Blizzard branch of Activision-Blizzard has enjoyed in China and Korea with every game they've ever released that ends in "Craft," Kotick admits that Activision's own products haven't done the same. Of course, saying that you haven't done as well as StarCraft in Korea is a bit like saying that your TV show doesn't get the ratings that the Super Bowl does, but I digress.
Asia isn't the only overseas market Kotick believes his company can do more in: "We're just scratching the surface of opportunity as a publisher in Europe. There's a lot more that we can do."
Whether abroad or at home, though, Kotick says that the company certainly has room for improvement when it comes to Nintendo's mega-popular Wii. The very reasons that the console is attractive to developers - its easy to develop for, has a gigantic install base, and since it doesn't have the power of the other two consoles, less time & money has to be spent on graphics and physics - means that the vast majority of what is released on the Wii is hastily made and of dubious quality. (And according to Michael Pachter, it'll clog your arteries and kill you).
Kotick admits that in the past, Activision's philosophy towards the Wii has been to treat it as a less-powerful extension of the Xbox and Playstation systems, resulting in lazy ports rather than new games built for the console from the ground up. "I think we can do a better job of creating original content for the Wii," Kotick said, adding that he thought "[gamers will] see more of that this year."
There's no question that Acti-Blizz has the cash reserves - financially, it's been outperforming all of its major competitors by a large margin. They have money to burn, and so it's quite conceivable that they could put some of that cash reservoir to use for the Wii. Whether or not they'll deliver on Kotick's promises, though, remains to be seen.