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Monster Hunter makes Capcom filthy rich in first quarter

It's no surprise that Monster Hunter is a hit in Japan, and it shouldn't come as a sucker punch to know that the title has made a pretty penny for Capcom. In fact, Capcom is gloating; the company has posted first quarter financial results (April 1 to June 30) which shows off a 60.1 percent profit increase of ¥4.02 billion ($37.2m). No doubt, this huge gain in cash is due to Monster Hunter Portable 2nd G which released March 27.

In this short time frame, the game has sold over 2.4 million copies in Japan -- the first PSP game to break the two million mark. Sales during the period went up 14.5 percent from the previous year raking in a total of ¥16.35 billion ($151m). Capcom notes that software sales other than Portable 2nd G were "mainly small-scale titles including spin-off software and repeated sales of existing products."

So Capcom, when can we expect the next Monster Hunter PSP game? It's obviously successful and needs some more money milking. Better yet, when is North America going to get in on the party with 2nd G?

PSP hardware and software sales for Q1 2009

The first quarter of Sony's new fiscal year (Apr-Jun 2008) has proved to be quite successful for the PlayStation brand. The gaming division posted a profit of $51 million, a stark change from PS3 loss-driven quarters in the past. PSP played a significant role in bringing PlayStation to profitability, with increasing hardware and software sales.

During this period, PSP sold 3.72 million units worldwide. This is an increase of 75% over Q1 2008. Software sales went up to 11.8 million units, an increase of 20%. While improving software sales is a good sign, this total still trails significant earnings from both the PS2 and PS3.

PSP has been meeting incredible success all over the world, especially in Japan. With sales the way they are now, there's little reason to believe the trend will change any time soon.

Would you like a PSP with that Volkswagen?

Here's a cute little advertising for the Volkswagen Polo that originated from Belgium. However, it seems like the whole ad is to sell our beloved PSP and its GPS attachment. We even got a video ad for you after the jump -- let's just say it involves a guy who defies gravity while using the PSP. Check it out.

Continue reading Would you like a PSP with that Volkswagen?

This week's PSP sales are brought to you by the number 1

PSP loves two numbers this week in Japan: the number 1 and 74,024. You see, the PSP is still number 1 this week, and it sold 74,024 systems. Yeah, see what we did there? Sales were spurred by a myriad of factors, such as the release of a new Blue system, bundled with the popular 1seg TV tuner. It also didn't help that it was a PSP, which Japanese gamers have confused with crack cocaine, apparently.
  • PSP - 74,024
  • DS - 54,531
  • Wii - 40,803
  • PS3 - 11,253
  • PS2 - 9535
  • 360 - 4208

Step-by-step guide to Go!View video download service

Curious about the new Go!View on-demand style video service launched in the UK and Ireland? Having trouble downloading from the service? Oh, you are not in the UK or Ireland but you are nosy? Either way, Pocket Gamer has a nifty step-by-step guide to the service just for people like you. It tells you how to go about everything from downloading the PC client to a number of possible errors you might encounter. Check it out here.

Valhalla Knights 2 may be unusually long

Most handheld games are relatively short (good example: God of War: Chains of Olympus). But, XSEED's not going to have any of that. Their upcoming PSP-exclusive RPG, Valhalla Knight 2, is going to be almost-obnoxiously long. According to Kotaku, the game will clock in at least 60 hours to complete, and up to 135 hours to "fully complete it." We don't know what they're putting in this game, but we hope it's compelling enough to warrant such an unusually lengthy play time.

[Thanks, Kyle P.!]

Gallery: Valhalla Knights 2

Spotted @ Comic-Con: Blue PSP

There's a new PSP color coming soon: Metallic Blue. And it'll be available in the upcoming Madden 09 Entertainment Pack, which includes the system, the game, a NFL documentary and a code to download beats off the PS Store. According to, the system will be available on August 12th.

Spencer from Siliconera snapped a few shots of the system in action over at San Diego Comic-Con for us (thanks!). Just like every other PSP, it has the uncanny ability to pick up fingerprints. Will you pick this baby up come August?

Gallery: Madden PSP Entertainment Pack

European video download service 'Go!View' now live

The fruits of Sony and Sky's partnership (which, scarily, we first reported on just under a year ago) is now finally available to the masses. Go!View allows you to download video content to your PSP across an array of genres for a relatively small fee. Content travels to your PSP via a PC, so Mac users are sadly left out in the cold. Pricing runs on both a subscription model and a pay-per-view model, depending on the content you are viewing.

Movies and "Latest TV" will all be individually priced and include series 1 of Doctor Who (not sure that counts as "latest", seeing as series 4 just finished), season 3 of Lost and Resident Evil: Apocalypse. TV episodes are priced at £1.50/€2.00 with movies at £2.50 - £3.50 (€3.20 - €4.50). Alternatively, there are "Entertainment," "Comedy" and "Sports" subscription packs which cost £5/€7 per month and let you download as much content as you like.

These subscription packs are surprisingly fleshed out with classic 70s Doctor Who, Scrubs, Life On Mars, Red Dwarf and Coupling. The assumption is that the site will be constantly updated with more content, but we notice this fact isn't advertised. It seems like a pretty decent service to grab UK-centric on-the-go video content, but we would love to see it somehow integrated into the EU PSN Store. Might lessen the sting of knowing we're not getting a video-download service until 2009.

Valhalla Knights 2 gets rebalanced for NA debut

Localizers Xseed have plans to tweak the US version of Valhalla Knights 2 and streamline the difficulty, according to Siliconera. Changes being made include easier level ups, which means less time grinding. Items will also drop more frequently. Lastly, save game data from the first Valhalla Knights can be used to get a free familiar and a helpful elf ally. The story is also said to be more cohesive than the first. An official date for North America has yet to be announced, but retail listings suggest a September 23, 2008 release.

Rumor: A 'design sample' of the PSP-3000

According to a poster on the PSPChina forums, the above is a "design sample" of another iteration of the PSP. The poster claims this information comes from a "reliable inside source" and that Sony had already finalized this basic design by the end of 2007. The only new addition so far is a built-in microphone, but otherwise the size and shape is the same as the PSP-2000. The Home button has been replaced by a PlayStation logo button just like the PS3 controller. Also noted is the hole between the volume buttons and the PSP logo, which the poster claims is where the microphone is located. The size of the metal ring has been reduced, allegedly to reduce scratches on it.

The poster claims he doesn't know the actual model number of the this PSP -- it could be a PSP-2100 or 3000 or something else entirely. "The pictures are actually of a design sample; whenever a new system is to be created, designers will follow Sony's instructions in creating several different versions. This is one of the versions that was created and then discarded. Next year when we buy this PSP, it will be slightly different, but I believe the microphone and smaller metal ring will remain."

Another set of pictures shows a black version of this so-called PSP-3000. The PlayStation button is slightly rounder and larger. The poster admits that the final design of real PSP-3000, or whatever the model number happens to be, is still unclear. Basically, even if everything this dude/dudette says is true, what we'll be seeing on store shelves might look completely different, assuming there is even a redesign in the works. Six more pictures after the jump.

[Via Joystiq]

Continue reading Rumor: A 'design sample' of the PSP-3000

Who's number one again? The PSP is!

Can anyone ever be sick of good news? Maybe you guys are tired of hearing how well our beloved handheld is doing in Japan. But we doubt Sony minds the good news, and neither do we. However, we do mind coming up with a new headline for the same good news every single week. Maybe you guys can give us some suggestions in comments ...

Week of June 30th-July 6th:
  • PSP - 56,998 (559)
  • Nintendo DS - 48,540 (1,085)
  • Wii - 41,768 (2,757)
  • PlayStation 3 - 12,458 (1,901)
  • PlayStation 2 - 10,405 (1,363)
  • Xbox 360 - 3,807 (969)
The PSP outsold itself from last week, selling 559 more units. Its big brother, the PlayStation 3, didn't fare so well -- sales fell by almost 2,000 units.

Duke Nukem Trilogy for PSP 'more mature, more hardcore'

Despite the ... unique trailer featuring logos dancing around, Apogee insists they won't screw up the ultimate badass' return in the upcoming Duke Nukem Trilogy games. Terry Nagy, CEO of Apogee Software, gave some details about the newest outing of the Duke on the PSP. He started off by stressing immediately that the game will be out for summer 2009, unlike a certain other Duke Nukem game.

With the trilogy, Apogee's plan is to have "another Duke game ... on the store shelves as the first one is starting to fall off the shelves." The first game Critical Mass will take place in the future, so the player will have "really cool futuristic weapons" at his disposal. Chain Reaction is set in current times while Proving Ground has Duke traveling back into the past to 1945 as "the Forrest Gump of World War II" and using "period-style weapons." Finally, Nagy reveals that the PSP version is "more mature, more hardcore of gamer, third-person, first-person, top-down scroller type of stuff" and that it is aiming for a Mature rating, as opposed to a Teen rating on the DS.

We aren't too optimistic about this game, but then again we've seen basically nothing. Either way, we would avoid the DS version, not because we are fanboys at all, but because Duke himself would never be caught dead playing a Teen game.

[Thanks, David B.!]

Sony: iPhone not a threat, GPS coming within 9 months

PSP brand manager John Koller has spoken out about the prospects of the PSP for the rest of 2008: he is confident that like the first half of 2008, key titles like Crisis Core: Final Fantasy and God of War: Chains of Olympus, along with multimedia functionality, will set the system apart from its competitors. Koller also believes the key to maintaining strong sales is to add "new features, new functionality." He also confirms the Go!Explore GPS will go on sale in the States in the next nine months and hopes to convey to consumers the PSP is part of a "broader cultural trend for content on the go."

Addressing the new iPhone App Store, which has many games available for download on it, Koller feels that the iPhone "is more of a threat to DS than anything else" because of its nature as a secondary gaming device, hence attracting more casual gamers. We agree -- with an onslaught of specialized exclusives coming up like Resistance: Retribution, Papapon 2 and Dissidia: Final Fantasy, it certainly seems the PSP is poised to have a bright future.

NPD: Over 337k PSP units sold in June

The introduction of the God of War bundle seems to be responsible for yet another stellar month of PSP sales Over 337k PSP systems were sold in June in North America -- that's 85% more than last month! While hardware sales are great, we'd love to see these numbers translate to software sales. Hopefully, new PSP owners are taking their time to discover the great library of PSP games out on store shelves.

Rumor: Trophies on PSP

This isn't the first time rumors have been going around, but it's the first time we have some real evidence. During a presentation yesterday during E3 for Buzz! Master Quiz, producer Emerson Escobar talked about an in-game medal system, which isn't too surprising for a quiz game.

But then, Escobar begins talking about a "trophy system" where depending on the speed you answer a question, you get a different trophy. When asked if this meant trophies for PSP, Escobar responded with a nervous chuckle and a "check back with us later," without saying anything else.

No comments from Sony at this time. But trophies on the PSP seem almost natural at this point, so we are wondering more as to when trophies will be available on our favorite handheld.

[Thanks to everyone who sent this in!]

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