Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony explain how the President could make consoles too expensive - Dexerto

Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony explain how the President could make consoles too expensive

Published: 26/Jun/2019 21:26 Updated: 20/Nov/2020 12:30

by Bill Cooney


In a joint letter to the President’s administration Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony have argued that U.S. President proposed tariffs on China could hurt the video game industry and make consoles more expensive than ever.

The letter was sent to the United States Trade Representative regarding the yet-to-be-finalized list of goods imported from China that will be subject to a new, 25 percent increase on tariffs (a tax on imports or exports between sovereign states).

Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony say the cost from these new taxes will ultimately be passed on to American consumers and could put more than 220,000 jobs at risk.

U.S. President (left) and Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) have yet to reach an agreement on trade between the two countries.

What did the companies have to say?

In the letter Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo point out that the video game industry generated $43.4 billion dollars in 2018 and employs more than 220,000 people both directly and indirectly.

They also point out that in 2018, over 96 percent of video game consoles imported into the United States were produced in China, which means they would be affected by the new 25 percent tariff – a cost that most likely would be passed on to consumers.

“The video game console supply chain has developed in China over many years of investment by our companies and our partners,” the letter read. “It would cause significant supply chain disruption to shift sourcing entirely to the United States or a third country, and it would increase costs – even beyond the cost of the proposed tariffs – on products that are already manufactured under tight margin conditions.”

“Given that the main purpose of video game consoles is to play games, the harm to the thousands of U.S.-based game and accessory developers who depend on console sales to generate demand for their products would be equally profound,” the letter continued. “The ripple effect of harm could be dramatic.”

96 percent of video game consoles imported into the United States are produced in China.

What happens next?

The President laid out his new proposal to impose a 25 percent import tax on nearly all consumer goods produced in China in May of 2019, but so far there’s no official word from the White House or the U.S. Trade Representative about when they would go into effect.

China’s President Xi Jinping and the President will both be at the 2019 G20 Summit in Osaka, Japan and there’s talk that the two could move forward on a trade agreement that would avoid the tariffs, but we’ll just have to wait and see.

All the recent talk from games companies about their amazing, next-gen consoles might be for nothing if the tariffs go into effect and the price climbs out of the reach of average video game consumers.


Police hunt for suspect after hoax hostage situation at Ubisoft Montreal

Published: 13/Nov/2020 19:45 Updated: 14/Nov/2020 0:37

by Theo Salaun


Reports indicate that there is an ongoing hostage situation involving dozens of people at Ubisoft Montreal’s headquarters in the Mile-End neighborhood of Montreal, Quebec. There have been no confirmed injuries.

Update (7:35 p.m. ET): Ubisoft Montreal have released a statement regarding the hostage situation. “We are extremely relieved this was resolved without incident and we’d like to thank you all for your support and kind words.”

No injuries were reported at the offices. Montreal Police are launching a full investigation into the call.

Update (5:04 p.m. ET): All of the Ubisoft Montreal’s building occupants are being safely evacuated by Montreal’s police force and the police have joined local news in suggesting that the situation was, in fact, a hoax perpetrated by a call within the Ubisoft headquarters. No suspect has been identified or apprehended at this point, but the SPVM are actively investigating.

Update (4:04 p.m. ET): While local news outlets are reporting that the hostage situation was a hoax, Montreal’s police force have indeed confirmed that there appears to be no active threat and that the building’s occupants are being evacuated.

Update (3:33 p.m. ET): Little is known about the police force’s ongoing activity in attempts to enter the building, but CTV News reports that Ubisoft’s employees have been told, via company memo, to “hide in an area that locks and to keep quiet.”

Update (3:00 p.m. ET): Heavily armed Montreal police tactical units are approaching the building and preparing to make entry. Dozens of employees remain on roof and no injuries or negotiations with the suspects have been reported thus far.

Update (November 13, 2020 at 2:49 p.m. ET): Police appear to have barricaded off the daycare at Ubisoft Montreal’s headquarters, at least 50 employees have barricaded themselves atop the building’s roof, and tactical police units have blocked off surrounding streets and appear to be preparing to make entry. Current reports indicate that there have been no injuries thus far, according to local news on the scene.

With numerous reports and tweets from local news and Ubisoft Montreal employees, respectively, it appears that a hostage situation is unfolding at the company’s headquarters but that all employees are safe. 

In the afternoon, it was reported by Quebec’s TVA Nouvelles that dozens of hostages were being held at Ubisoft Montreal’s building on Saint Laurent Boulevard. This ongoing situation was echoed by Montreal’s police department, who put out public announcements to avoid the area due to the police’s efforts there.

Shortly after, numerous employees, including Programming Project Lead Gavin Young and a Production Marketer for Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla, tweeted that they were indeed safe and sound despite what was happening in the building.

Although ‘Valskuiken’ tweeted that they would be going home, it appears that a large conglomerate of employees have made their ways to the building’s roof and have barricaded themselves up there by blocking off the door to the exterior.

Further, reports from TVA Nouvelles indicate that a ransom request has been made by the suspects, but it is unclear what has come of it as police continue to operate in the vicinity.

At present, it appears that numerous employees are safe but it is unclear what is precisely happening with the situation given the multi-floor building’s space and large occupancy. At least 50 employees have made it to the roof, wherereports show they are holding up safely. However, in anticipation of the police force making entry into the building, it seems that ambulances and a tactical police force are arriving to the scene.

As reports indicate, the tactical forces approaching the building include numerous police officers, tactical police units, and heavier vehicles. There have been no indications of injuries thus far, so it appears that the ambulances are predominantly a precautionary measure.

We will be continuing to update this page with updates as they come in and as the Montreal police force and local news provide information to the public about the current circumstances.