Shane Kim, vice president of strategy and business development for Microsoft's games business, has described himself as only "cautiously optimistic" about the 2008 winter gift-buying season and even more concerned about 2009.
Despite enjoying its best-ever performance
over the Thanksgiving "Black Friday" shopping weekend, Kim voiced concern over the general state of the world economy and what it could mean for the video games market.
Speaking to news service Reuters, Kim said that 2008's figure of 20 percent growth for the market is not likely to be repeated next year
"Who knows, maybe flat performance will be considered a remarkable achievement," said Kim. "It's difficult to predict the future," he added, referring to remarks from some analysts
that the games industry is to some degree "recession-resistant".
According to Kim, Microsoft's games business is planning for "tough times" and looking for additional opportunities for cost cutting. "A big objective for us is to deliver most entertainment value for the dollar," he added.
Kim's comments follow those made by Microsoft Entertainment and Devices Division corporate VP and CFO Mindy Mount last month
, in which she claimed that "the interactive entertainment business is poised to weather this storm a lot better than other businesses."