announced plans to close between 50 and 60 of its arcade locations across the country, citing the expanding home console market as a big part of the problem.
Specifically, company spokesman Yuji Machida blames the Nintendo Wii, stating that strong holiday sales for the console mean a lot of kids have spent their time at home playing, and spent their money on more Wii software and hardware, such as the popular Wii Fit package.
Of course, home consoles certainly aren't the only cause. Machida also cites rising gas prices as a concern, as families become less willing to travel back and forth from shopping malls, where arcades are normally located. The 50-60 arcades closing account for one-fifth of Namco Bandai's arcades in Japan. A big loss, to be sure.
[Via Wii Fanboy]