Konami Corp will remove depictions of the World Trade Center from an action-adventure game it plans to begin selling in the US in November because of last week's terrorist attacks. \nThe maker of video-game software for Sony Corp and Microsoft Corp will delete the images from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, the follow up to a game that's sold more than 6 million copies. In the game, players pose as members of an anti-terrorist team trying to free a hijacked oil tanker. \nMicrosoft, Electronic Arts Inc and Ubi Soft Entertainment SA have deleted images of the World Trade Center buildings or delayed game releases after terrorists hijacked and crashed planes into the twin towers and the Pentagon last Tuesday. Konami's Metal Gear Solid 2 is designed for Sony's PlayStation 2 console. \nKonami's shares have fallen by a quarter following the attacks on concern declining consumer demand in the US may hurt earnings of game software makers, and also due to worries that Konami may delay the November release of the game. The shares were almost unchanged at ?2,830, up 0.35 percent. \nAlthough the game will be released on schedule, "it is still unclear whether sales will be as expected," said Hirotoshi Murakami, an analyst with Kokusai Securities Co. Murakami does not plan to raise his "underperform" rating on the company. \nKonami plans to sell as many as 3.2 million copies of the game worldwide. \n"Originally, Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty had pictures of the World Trade Center in New York, but those scenes were deleted due to the horrendous terrorist incidents in the US,'' a release posted on Konami's Web site said. \nThe shares of video-game makers have slumped since last Tuesday's attacks in New York and Washington on concern that consumers will turn away from violence-laden entertainment. \nNintendo Co's shares lost about a quarter of their value in the five days since the attacks. Interplay Entertainment Corp shares fell 6.3 percent yesterday in US trading. \nNintendo, maker of the GameCube video-game console, rebounded today, surging as much as 15.8 percent to ?15,520. North and South America account for more than half the Kyoto-based company's sales and a third of its operating profit. \nMicrosoft, the maker of the Xbox game console to be released in the US in November, said last week that it will remove images of the World Trade Center from future versions of its Flight Simulator computer game. \nElectronic Arts suspended its Majestic online conspiracy game. The company is also redesigning the package of its Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 computer game to remove a depiction of an explosion in one of the World Trade Center towers. \nJapanese game software developers are no exception. Namco Ltd, the maker of Pac Man, last week suspended TV advertising for its Ace Combat 4: Shattered Skies for three days. The game was released on Thursday in Japan for the PlayStation 2. The company said it is now reviewing the planned Oct. 23 release of the game in the US. \n"Under circumstances like these, we have to think about how those involved in the incident felt," said Kenichi Fukunaga, a spokesman for Sony's game unit, Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.
HIGH-RISK GROUP: After the latest outbreak, family members of workers exposed to infection would from tomorrow be eligible for government-funded vaccines The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported four local COVID-19 cases: three family members of an infected worker at a quarantine hotel and a family member of an infected pilot. The new cases bring the number of infections involving China Airlines Ltd (中華航空) pilots and the Novotel Taipei Taoyuan International Airport hotel, where many of the airline’s crew members quarantined, to 24. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said three of them are the husband, son and daughter of case No. 1,129, a woman in her 60s, who works at the hotel. The son is in
NEXT STEP? The contract chipmaker said it would decide whether to add more plants based on operation efficiency, cost economics and demand Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) is planning to build several more chipmaking fabs in the US state of Arizona beyond the one already planned, three people familiar with the matter said. TSMC, the world’s largest contract chipmaker, announced in May last year that it would build a US$12 billion fab in Arizona. The 12-inch wafer fab in Phoenix is expected to start mass production in 2024, the Investment Commission said in December, when it approved the plan. Three sources familiar with the matter, speaking on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to speak to the media, said that up
VIRUS CURBS: Visiting people staying at healthcare and long-term care facilities in Taipei, New Taipei City and Taoyuan is banned until May 17, the CECC announced The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday banned visits to patients or residents at healthcare and long-term care facilities in three cities until May 17. It also reported six imported cases of COVID-19 and two cases with unclear infection sources. As the number of locally transmitted cases rises, some of whom have visited many places in Taipei, New Taipei City and Taoyuan, enhanced disease prevention measures have to be implemented in the three cities, said Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center. “Visiting people staying at healthcare and long-term care facilities in Taipei, New Taipei City and
TAKING NOTICE: In the first time that G7 foreign ministers have mentioned Taiwan in a joint communique, they called for ‘peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait’ The Presidential Office yesterday thanked the G7 foreign ministers for their strong support of Taiwan after the group in its joint statement on Wednesday called for the nation’s participation in the WHO, and the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait. The ministers in a communique issued at the end of their three-day meeting declared support for “Taiwan’s meaningful participation” in WHO forums and the World Health Assembly (WHA). “The international community should be able to benefit from the experience of all partners, including Taiwan’s successful contribution to the tackling of the COVID-19 pandemic,” it said. The statement included a section