Standing by its star, EA launches Tiger Woods Online

Electronic Arts was one of the few companies which didn’t drop a sponsorship deal with 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.

Ubisoft's Tony Key on the new way to market blockbuster games

French video game publisher Ubisoft had a good year as the top marketer in the video game business. At last week’s MI6 game marketing conference, the company took home seven awards for the marketing campaigns for its games such as Assassin’s Creed II, one of the top sellers during the holiday season. Tony Key is the senior vice president of sales and marketing at Ubisoft, the French video game publisher behind big hits from the Tom Clancy games to Prince of Persia. We caught up with him at MI6, where he talked about the changes in game marketing in an age of social media as well as the upcoming launch of the company’s big game, Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Conviction, (pictured) which hits stores on April 13.

Elemental Live: the cure for lousy streaming video?

Watching live video on the Internet remains a hit-or-miss experience, with buffer delays and stream glitches ruining the show. Elemental Technologies is launching a hardware system today that makes it much simpler and cheaper to broadcast  high-quality live video streams over the Internet.

Buying an iPad without the ordeal of waiting in line

Unlike the early adopters who camped out early in San Francisco, I managed to waltz into an Apple Store in the Silicon Valley town of Los Gatos, just down the road from Apple’s world headquarters, this morning at the late hour of 11:45 a.m. and bought an iPad on opening day. I didn’t preorder and I didn’t even have to wait in line behind anyone. I was late because I had a soccer game to attend — like a lot of people in America who like gadgets just fine, but don’t put them ahead of their friends and families.

A tale of two iPad game developers: Telltale and SGN attack market from different directions

The Apple iPad, which debuts tomorrow, is one of the most interesting platforms to emerge in years for game developers. One reason is that the device is squarely in the middle of the hardware markets. PC and console game makers can readily adapt their games to run on the iPad’s beautiful 9.7-inch touchscreen. Meanwhile, iPhone and iPod Touch game makers can quickly redo their games to run on the iPad.

Here comes a flood of iPad games

For all the talk about the Apple iPad as a cool e-book reader, I’d like to remind everyone that the most popular of the 150,000 apps in the AppStore are games. I would wager that games are going to be the most popular app on the iPad, which has the big screen to do gaming right.

Investment banker predicts big investments, mergers in game market

Tim Merel sees lots of action coming in the video game industry as it expands to become one of the biggest entertainment industries in the world. Merel is corporate finance director for games and other sectors at IBIS Capital in London. He just released a 60-slide review of the global opportunities for investing in video games. He looks at everything from funding to merger opportunities throughout the industry, from console games to social games. Here are his thoughts on various sectors and trends in video games. Check out his complete slide deck at the bottom of the post.