Old games find new life on mobile devices

June 7, 2012 at 6:30 PM
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LOS ANGELES, June 7 (UPI) -- Old videogame titles that once gathered dust in closets have found a new life on mobile devices such as Apple's iPhone, U.S. analysts say.

Rebranding and rereleasing old games in a mobile format is giving gaming companies an unexpected new revenue stream, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

Older games are being reworked to run on smartphones and tablet computers rather than videogame consoles and personal computers.

"It used to be people were skeptical there was any library value at all [to these old games]," said Strauss Zelnick, chief executive of Take-Two, which recently released "Max Payne Mobile," a re-working of the first game in the series released 11 years ago.

Reselling older games like "Max Payne" and "Grand Theft Auto," both on mobile devices and traditional videogame consoles and personal computers, has become a big business for Take-Two, representing as much as almost a third of the company's revenue in some quarters.

Bringing old games to mobile platforms brings in revenue at little extra expense for gaming companies, industry experts said.

"They're dumb if they don't take existing games and remonetize them," Lewis Ward, an analyst at industry research firm IDC, said.

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