Interview with Michel Cassius Reveals Microsoft Dialogue with SquareSoft and MGS for Xbox

We spoke to Michel on the day of the Xbox launch party. Here's what he had to say.

Posted by Staff
Looks like we'll see this guy on Xbox after all
Looks like we'll see this guy on Xbox after all
We happened upon the man charged with ensuring the Xbox will be a success in Europe, Michel Cassius, in a London hotel yesterday. A jovial Frenchman with a gaming pedigree, Cassius seemed like a man without a care in the world and was more interested in honing his Dead or Alive 3 skills than talking about the imminent Xbox launch.

Question: How many consoles will there be in the shops on day one?

Michelle Cassius: We are not giving out exact figures for the UK or Europe for that matter. We are expecting to shift somewhere in the region of between 4.5 to 6 million consoles before June. We will sell out on day one, and it will be difficult to get hold of one without a pre-order for about a week

Q: How do you feel about the level of support received by Xbox from third-party publishers?

MC: It is probably the best level of support ever seen for a console. We are currently talking to everyone except Sony Computer Entertainment and Nintendo. I really cannot think of a single other publisher that we donít have a dialogue with at the moment.

Q: What about Square?

MC: It would be great to have Square games for Xbox

Q: What do you think of Sonyís little spoiler attempts, like the heavy TV campaign of late and the release of Metal Gear Solid?

MC: We only see all of this as a compliment, especially the Metal Gear Solid release. Sonyís plan has backfired a little, as Metal Gear Solid will look better on Xbox than it does on PlayStation 2.

Q: There is widespread speculation that the Xbox is nothing more than a Trojan device, designed to establish Microsoft into the lounges of the world, with the goal being to control what we watch/listen to/play and how we do it. The word ĎHomeStationí has been bandied about. What do you think of all this?

MC: J Allard used a word when asked about this recently. I think the word was bollocks! Microsoft has no need to do this. Xbox is a game console and though it does give us direct access to consumers Ė so what? We already have MSN for that via PC. We just wanted to get established in a growth marketplace like gaming. With the advent of the Xbox, many new gaming possibilities will become open to consumers, their lounge will become the world. And multiplayer gaming, and I donít just mean massively multiplayer games, will become a reality. Also, Sony is doing exactly that. The PlayStation 2 as a home-entertainment hub concept has been confirmed since E3 and was welcomed by the press. Sony has stated that the PlayStation 2 will be used to coordinate many portable and static devices through one point, such as digital cameras and Mini-Disc players. They showed their games machine set up with a mouse, a keyboard and a monitor. Itís a PC!

Q: Can you see Sony announcing PlayStation 3 soon?

A: Thatís up to Sony.

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