Kevin Bachus shared the stage with Sun’s Scott McNealy at the JavaOne Conference in San Francisco to announce the;
“Phantom Gaming Service is slated to go live Thursday, Nov. 18, 2004. The Phantom Game Receiver will ship with the full Java 2 Standard Edition Runtime Environment and supporting game APIs. All Java technology-based games will be able to run on the Phantom out of the box.”
The console will is based on an AMD Athlon XP 2500+ and contains a 40GB hard drive, 256MB of memory TV output and broadband Internet feed. The graphics come courtesy of an NVIDIA GeForce FX 5700 Ultra ship. The box, which clearly amounts to little more than a low-end PC, will retail for $199, Infinium said. The Phantom Game Service costs $29.95 a month, and if you sign up for a 24-month period, you’ll get your Athlon XP box for free.
The first launch was supposed to be in Q1 2003. The second was supposed to be Q1, 2004.
The prospect of consolidation of the video game software sector took another step forward Friday, as Acclaim Entertainment warned that it may soon wind up in bankruptcy after shares hit a 52-week low of 25 cents a few days ago. “Acclaim shares remain a speculative investment until management demonstrates its ability to execute on its strategy of making fewer, higher quality games,” Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter wrote Friday. “We believe that the company has a respectable lineup of games planned for release in [fiscal 2005] , but due to continuing cash flow problems, its ability to deliver these games on time remains in question.” In its annual report filed Thursday and in an earnings release on Friday, the game maker reported that it is in default on some of its convertible notes and at least three of its licensing agreements are in dispute, in part because Acclaim’s partners claim it hasn’t been paying royalties on time. While Acclaim negotiated a $30 million line of credit in May, it is facing a cash crunch. At the end of fiscal year on March 31, the company had just $1.1 million in cash, compared to $41.2 million in short-term debt.