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Microsoft: We understand European loyalty to Sony

Game Studios boss hopes to see further success in Europe by continuing to cater to regional consumer demands

In a short period that has seen Microsoft trumpet record sales figures in the UK and Europe, the company has told GamesIndustry.biz that it will continue to cater to the European market with regional specific content.

Head of Microsoft Game Studios Phil Spencer has even said that he understands the loyalty that European consumers have traditionally held for Sony products, and his team is working hard to create games that appeal to niche demands.

"I understand as a gamer the brand that Sony has here, and the work that we need to do to build content and franchises that uniquely resonate with the customers in the different European markets," commented Spencer in an interview published today.

"Investment in studios, investment in people on the ground creating games is critical to us succeeding in this market."

The Xbox 360 has sold over six million units in Europe, 2.3 million of which are in the UK alone.

"We look at our success to date, and we understand... that having content creators and content that is very tailored towards the European market is incredibly important, especially in the console space in the competitive environment that we're in," added Spencer.

It's not just titles for Europe, but further dividing content between countries on the continent, that Microsoft now hopes to do, in a similar move to Sony's region-specific SingStar releases.

"Ensuring that when games come out, as with Lips and other things, that we tailor those games to the specific markets - so if you're in Spain and you want to hear a Spanish pop song, you should be able to do that, and we're doing the work to enable that functionality. That is important," detailed Spencer.

Spencer concluded that European-developed software and content is crucial to Microsoft's global business, with some of the company's most successful brands developed in the region.

"Europe specifically - I think I did the math about a year ago, so it might even be higher - but over 40 per cent of MGS games historically have come from Europe, when we think of Project Gotham Racing, Crackdown, and all the different things that we've done here.

"That shows both the content creation community that's here, and also how important it is for us that we have content that comes from Europe - it tends to do well in Europe - so let's make sure that we continue to invest."

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