* Guitar Hero 5 is squashing Beatles Rock Band like a grape. Activision says they are selling 4 to 1 in the US, and 9 to 1 in some territories. But Viacom isn't complaining. 25% of the inventory sold out in the first week. "All You Need Is Love" has become the fastest selling Rock Band track after only two days, and the Beatles tracks have hit 60 million downloads already. The special edition is expected to be sold out by November. And here's the kicker -- that is exceeding their expectations, they didn't think Beatles Rock Band would be a hit. Thank you, Viacom, for not thinking you needed a blue ocean against your rival.
* NCSoft, based out of Good Korea, is prepping a new MMORPG, and they have pre-orders of nearly 400 000, enabling them to claim the biggest MMORPG launch of the year. However, NCSoft is shutting down Dungeon Runners, an MMORPG geared for casual players, on December 31. Subscribers are being offered free games and such for their trouble.
* Nintendo's newest entries in the Pokemon series, HeartGold and SoulSilver (HeartGold...is that supposed to be a Douglas Adams reference?!?) came out in Japan this week, and have already moved 1.4 million copies.
* Sony released a redesigned PS3 with a slim form factor and lower price to try to boost their flagging presence in the video game market (in some months, the PS2 was outselling the PS3. And notice devs are still making new games for the PS2). The shift was greeted by the Japanese buying 151 000 PS3's. One week later, however, they only bought 55 344 PS3's. In contrast, they bought 17 568 Wii's, the XBox 360 sold 7 568, and the PS2 sold 2 612. Oh, and just for the record -- the DS and DSi sold a total of 77 677, while the PSP sold 18 375. No stats on the GP2X Wiz, but I bet it's probably lower than the PS2....
* Bioshock, the XBox360 and PC game with critical acclaim and a WTF ending, gets it's sequel on February 9, much earlier than projected.