"Tomb Raider: Underworld was released on the major gaming platforms on Nov. 18, 2008 in North America and Nov. 21, 2008 in the rest of the world. We are pleased that in our key European territories the game charted in the Top 10 for the 6 weeks from launch to Christmas and performed well against both competitive products and recent iterations of the franchise. However, on a global basis our sell through to 31 December, which we estimate at approximately 1.5 million units, is below our internal forecasts, primarily due to a lower start in North America. In a difficult North American economy we have seen retailers restricting inventory levels and triple-A products being price discounted above our expectation.
Consequently as we enter the second half of our financial year we are cautious about the potential for ongoing price discounting. We have therefore revised our sales assumptions for Tomb Raider: Underworld and other products to be released and estimate our full year revenue will now be in the range of £160m-£180m compared to our previous guidance of £180m-£200m. We have passed our peak net debt position and we retain sufficient headroom within our committed banking facility but given revised profit expectations we may need to enter into discussions with our lending bank regarding our June 2009 covenants.
We believe our strategy of focusing on cornerstone franchises is further validated by the current challenging and competitive environment. We are concentrating our efforts and resources on those high quality titles that will deliver long-term franchise value while pro-actively managing our cost base and exploring ways to improve the mechanics of the business.
Looking further into our 2009 financial year, we are encouraged by the positive reaction to our forthcoming Batman: Arkham Asylum videogame. We are working closely with DC Comics and Warner Bros. and through our strategic partnership we are benefitting from cross-promotional opportunities including the first video trailer for Batman: Arkham Asylum featured on all DVDs of the movie The Dark Knight this Christmas."
Designed specifically to take advantage of the latest technologies Tomb Raider: Underworld represents a new advancement in exploration-based gameplay. As fearless adventurer Lara Croft explore exotic locations around the world, each designed with an incredible attention to detail resulting in breathtaking high-definition visual fidelity that creates a truly believable world and delivers a new level of challenge and choice.
For generations, stories have been told of the fearsome weapon of the Norse god Thor. Legend holds that he who wields the hammer has the power to smash mountains into valleys and the strength to destroy even the gods. For more than a thousand years it has existed only as a myth…until now.
In an ancient ruin on the floor of the Mediterranean Sea, Lara Croft uncovers proof of the Norse underworld and the mythical hammer. As she attempts to unravel the secrets behind these myths, Lara’s perilous journey leads her toward a forgotten power that, if unleashed, could lay waste to all civilization.
Key Features :
- Master your surroundings: Reach new heights with the broadest range of acrobatic abilities and utilize objects within the environment to uncover new paths to explore.
- Explore epic and unknown worlds: Discover ancient mysteries of the underworld hidden within the coast of Thailand, frozen islands of the Arctic Sea, the jungles of Mexico, and more.
- Treacherous and unpredictable challenges: Each level is an elaborate multi-stage puzzle masked within an interactive environmental playground offering more flexibility over how the area is solved.
- New range of combat options: Choose to pacify or kill, target multiple enemies at once with the new dual-target system, and shoot with one hand while suspended with the other.
- New state-of-the-art gear: Utilize the latest technology in Lara’s upgraded inventory to navigate the world including:
- Active Sonar map: A revolutionary new tool that emits an active sonar ping to create a 3D image of Lara’s surroundings, perfect for uncovering hidden items and locations.
- Multi-purpose grapple: A claw-like device with a high-tension cable designed for climbing, rappelling, performing wall runs and manipulating objects within the environment.
- All-terrain hybrid motorbike: A unique vehicle design built to drive on everything from mud to snow and ice.
Tomb Raider: Underworld will ship throughout North America on November 18, 2008, with the European ship date following on November 21, 2008.
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