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They are the professional analysts who research, keep track of, advise their clients on, and opine to the news media about the video game business.
In Analyze This, we present a timely question pertaining to the business side of the industry, and then simply let a trio of analysts offer their thoughts directly to you. Each person's opinion is his own.
Nick Williams of OTX Research, Jesse Divnich of Electronic Entertainment Design and Research, and Michael Pachter of Wedbush Morgan Securities considered these questions:
Which game releases in 2008 were for you the surprise hits, and surprise misses, of the year?
Which console platform's performance in the market surprised you the most this year? Conversely, which one(s) disappointed? What about the handhelds?
What do you think are some of the lessons that the industry learned this year... lessons which may carry over into 2009?
Read on for their answers: