tirsdag 6. april 2010

Standing by its star, EA launches Tiger Woods Online

Electronic Arts stood by Tiger Woods as he became embroiled in controversy in recent months. Today, as he returns to professional golf at the Master tournament in Georgia, the video game company is formally launching its Tiger Woods PGA TOUR Online game on the web.
The online game is a more casual and social version of the game the company sells for consoles and PCs. It has decent-quality 3D graphics and yet plays in a browser, with no game disk or installation required. It uses Unity Technologies plug-in for 3D graphics browsing.
Woods is evidently getting a warm welcome from fans. So it could be a very good call by EA to stand by Woods during the turmoil about his affairs, even as other sponsors such as Accenture abandoned the star athlete. EA has sold more than 25 million golf games based on the Tiger Woods brand since 1999.
This game costs $9.99 a month or $59.99 for a year in North America.Users can also purchase packages of points that they can spend in the game’s Pro Shop, which is a full golf gear and accessories store.
The game, which uses 3D animation, competes with World Golf Tour, which offers online multiplayer play with a more photorealistic graphics style. It represents part of a big investment that EA is making in its “digital strategy,” where it is shifting resources to anticipate the day when digital distribution of games exceeds sales in retail stores.
“The launch of Tiger Woods PGA TOUR Online signals a shift in the traditional distribution model and will change the way that people will be able to access and enjoy their favorite video games for years to come,” said EA Sports President Peter Moore.
The Tiger Woods PGA TOUR Online game has been in beta testing since May, 2009. During that time, players from almost 200 countries have played more than 2 million rounds of golf. EA plans to keep adding to the game based on player feedback. Players will be able to compete in group tournaments with golf buddies and send messages to friends.
Courses include Harbour Town Golf Links, Oakmont CC, Torrey Pines GC, Pebble Beach Golf Links, TPC Sawgrass, Sheshan Golf & CC, St Andrews (Old Course), Wolf Creek GC, Wentworth (West Course), and Bay Hill Club & Lodge. New courses will continue to be released in the future. EA’s console/PC/iPhone game, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 11, will launch on June 8.
Companies: electronic arts
People: Tiger Woods

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