Round-Up: SOE2 Emerges, Target Improves, Red Splits

Today's round-up includes news of the fate of the much-delayed State Of Emergency 2, good news for U.S. retail store Target that unfortunately may not necessarily...
Today's round-up includes news of the fate of the much-delayed State Of Emergency 2, good news for U.S. retail store Target that unfortunately may not necessarily translate to better news for the video game business, and a split from Sega for Japanese developer Red Entertainment, as well as today's product news and Gamasutra job postings. - DC Studios, the developed who picked up the State of Emergency 2 project after original developer VIS Interactive shut down, has announced that the project is nearly complete and the PS2 version is due to hit retail shelves in February 2006. "We are looking forward to reintroducing everyone to Spanky and his crew and to hitting the top of the charts again," said DC Studios CEO Mark Greenshields. "Our team has made State of Emergency 2 a really great game and one that far surpasses the original. I am extremely pleased to be publishing State of Emergency 2 with SouthPeak and confident that together we will make SOE2 a great success." A PSP version of the game is scheduled for release later in 2006. - Though many game retailers are preparing for a subpar return on Christmas game sales, chain department store Target has reported a 9.1% increase over 2004's holiday season in general terms, according to Reuters. November sales rose to $4.583 billion, compared to 2004's earnings of $4. billion. "Our performance strengthened as the month progressed and sales growth for the Thanksgiving week was consistent with our original expectations," said Target CEO Bob Ulrich. Unfortunately, one of the hottest holiday items is the largely sold-out Xbox 360, and these earnings were not specific to game sales, but there are still hopes that the trend will carry over for better holiday returns than some analysts are predicting. - Red Entertainment, a Japanese game planning firm, has announced its move to go independent in a corporate restructurement. The company formerly had strong ties to Sega, who published the company's best-known series, Sakura Taisen, but will now exist as its own entity. The new board of directors has bought back 59.2% of the company's stock from Sega, which leaves the Japanese software publisher with a 7.8% interest in Red. Despite the split, Red reaffirmed that it will remain partners with Sega in the ongoing Sakura Taisen series. - Also updated today: product news including Pixologic's release of its ZMapper plug-in for ZBrush, as well as today's Gamasutra job postings, with new positions from Ascaron Entertainment, Ensemble Studios, Idol Minds, Snowblind Studios, and Sony Pictures Imageworks.

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