Ubisoft executive Alain Corre has said he believes Microsoft is set to reap the benefits of the European PS3 delay this Christmas in the form of extra hardware and software sales.
Speaking in an exclusive interview, Corre - who is executive director of EMEA territories - said, "We had three PS3 games down for Christmas. I would have preferred the PS3 to come in, but it wasn't a big part of our business plan this year, and it can easily be replaced by the extra sales we'll do on 360 games that would have been cannibalised by PS3 games.
"I think that Sony giving an extra Christmas to Microsoft is an issue because the more 360 is established in homes, the less PS3 will be," he continued.
"The PS3 and the 360 are not cheap, so once people buy a machine they won't neccessarily by a second one three months after that or even a year after that. So I think for Sony, the earlier the better now."
According to Corre, the PS3 delay will not just benefit Microsoft but also Nintendo, which is set to launch the Wii in Europe on December 8 priced at GBP 179 / EUR 249.
When asked if the relatively low price point for the console is set to give Nintendo a much bigger advantage over its rivals, Corre replied, "I think it is. Thanks to this machine, Nintendo will convert a lot of non-gamers to the gaming community.
"Women, parents, gamers that used to play on NES or SNES and think games have got too complicated - the Wii might bring them into this business, which is good news for all of us."
Corre believes the games industry is currently going through a transition unlike any that has come before - the major difference being that previously "there were two and a half systems. This time we have three new consoles, which have each a strong possibility to perform and to achieve huge installed bases.
"That's the very first time that's happened in this industry. If you look back 15 or 20 years ago, we had two systems. This time we have three, and that's very good for all of us," he concluded.