Today's round-up includes some intriguing tidbits regarding Take-Two's relationship with Sega's sports video games, as well as information on GameSpy's middleware support for Battle for Middle-Earth
- According to some sharp-eyed online pundits, Take-Two's most recent 10-K financial statement has revealed a few interesting details about their relationship with Sega when it comes to the ESPN Sports line that the two companies co-publish: according to the fine print, Take-Two is entitled to "all of the revenue and profit, if any, from the sale of the sports titles developed by Visual Concepts and Kush" in exchange for funding development. More alarming is the clause that "the agreement may be terminated by us under certain circumstances, including as a result of Sega’s failure to obtain licenses from the major sports leagues and players associations." Therefore, though Take-Two hasn't come out and taken action yet, EA's recent wholesale buyout of the NFL license could theoretically mean the end of Take-Two's contract with Sega.
- Electronic Arts has partnered with IGN Entertainment to use GameSpy Arena as its official ladder and competition system in Battle for Middle-Earth
, the real-time strategy PC game based on the hit movies. Both the official, ranked competition ladder as well as user-created ladders will be available using the Arena, and players can both participate in multiplayer matches as well as use the Arena's community services to discuss the game in specially devoted forums.