Christmas console sales in the USA may be badly affected by the current blockade of ports on the west coast of the country, analysts have warned. Both Sony and Nintendo import their consoles into the USA from Japan and China via this route, and Microsoft will also be affected, with the company needing to ship certain Xbox components from Asia to its manufacturing plant in Mexico.
Some commentators have suggested that even if the blockade is lifted immediately, there may be a two month period before the backlog of cargo is fully cleared - leading to a potentially serious shortage of console hardware for the US market this holiday season.
Only a couple of months after the last Xbox price cut, Microsoft is seemingly planning to make the console into even better value for customers in time for Christmas, by bundling two Sega titles with the console for free.
The bundle will feature Sega GT 2002 and Jet Set Radio Future along with the Xbox console and will retail at the same price as the current Xbox console pack. It mirrors a similar bundle which was announced in the USA last week, with the sole difference being that in the USA, the console will also feature a Controller S prepackaged with it for the first time.
The move is likely to be a popular one with consumers in the run-up to Christmas, as it means that their new console will already have two games to play with it - while buying a GameCube or PS2 will require the purchase of expensive software titles before the system is actually any use. Bundling deals such as this were hugely popular in the heyday of home personal computers such as the Amiga, which were generally sold in a number of software bundles with customised packaging for each one.