GameCube arrives in Europe
Nintendo launched GameCube in Europe on Friday, and it seems the new console had a really warm welcome. The console war in Europe has started.
Saturday, May 4, 2002 - After an impressive launch campaign, yesterday Nintendo launched their new 128-bit console, the GameCube, in Europe. Thousands of players tried to get their hands on one of the 500,000 machines shipped for the launch, flocking to midnight store openings across Europe. Nintendo announced that 10,000 units were sold in the first two hours in Britain.
(Posted: Saturday, May 4, 2002, 3:22AM GMT)
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Nintendo Europe cut the retail price of their console two weeks before the launch; for only 214 Euro (about 180$) European players are able to buy a new unit. Also thanks to this price (that's about $90 below rival machines like Playstation 2 and X-Box), Nintendo registered about 50,000 preorders.
Toby Scott, editorial director of Games Analyst, an industry newsletter, said "I don't think GameCube will catch PlayStation 2, simply because of the head start it has. The tussle is between GameCube and Xbox for who gets to come in second. And that is just too tough to call".
Thanks to impressive launch titles like Resident Evil and Star Wars Rogue Squadron II: Rogue Leader the new console, considered by many a "console for kids", is attracting more and more over-20 players.
Seeing the good response to Nintendo's console, Microsoft are becoming more aggressive. They cut the price of their X-Box to 299 Euro (about $271) on April 26th; it's worth to mention that they are offering to all the European players who bought a console before that date two free games and an extra Xbox controller.
It's now time for Sony to make their move. With Final Fantasy X soon to be released in Europe, a price cut could give them a great advantage against their opponents.