Disney Buys Marvel - what it means for online games and virtual worlds

So, Disney yesterday announced that it has agreed to acquire Marvel Entertainment. This gives Disney access to such famous brands as The Hulk, Spiderman, X-Men and Howard the Duck.

The comic books, graphic novels, TV cartoons, character merchandising and movies obviously fit in well with Disney's media portfolio, but there are some questions around videogaming. Why?

Marvel characters have appeared in numerous videogames from many different developers and publishers since the dawn of home consoles - ranging from the superb (Marvel vs. Capcom) through to so-so movie tie ins (Iron Man). The first question for some of these developers and publishers is where do they stand now? Disney has its own game studio, and while to date has generally focused on classic family fare (Hannah Montana games), it has also published slightly more adult titles like 'Pirates of the Caribbean:At World's End'. Inevitably over time much of the game development efforts around Marvel properties are likely to revert to Disney but this will take time to plan and ramp up for - and that is without considering the existing licensing agreements that Activision, and Blue Tongue have.

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Netbooks - an upcoming Forrester Virtual Round Table

Netbooks and the emerging 'smartbook' category (great, another new term!) continue to be one of the hottest topics with Forrester clients. My recent outreach to those who have read my research in this space (Links below in case you've missed any of these) has created a lot of discussion and inquiries, and the market seems to be changing at a record pace. That is why this topic merits being one of the first covered in a new, timely product we're creating - client virtual round tables.

To allow a many to many conversation and discussion along with deeper insights into this research, I'd like to invite you and your peers to a one-hour informational call on Friday 4 September at 11:30am ET.

During the call, I'll present 25 minutes of material describing the ever-changing netbook landscape. The next 35 minutes will involve a facilitated Q & A discussion period, during which you'll have the opportunity to ask me and others on the call any questions about the direction of this market plus attendee experiences, issues and success stories. We will not disclose which client companies are on the call, but we will collaboratively explore the topics like:

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HP's WMC netbook announcements - a step in the right direction.

In my most recent report&nbsp

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