Disney Delays 'Infinity' Video Game by Two Months

4:25 PM PST 03/14/2013 by Paul Bond

The decision, which didn't seem to bother Wall Street, was made to take advantage of the fall retail season, an executive says.

In January, Disney Interactive hosted an event to show off "its most ambitious gaming initiative ever." It now seems that consumers will have to wait an additional two months to play with it.

The game, called Disney Inifinity, is a hybrid of an action figure and a videogame akin to Skylanders, a hugely popular game from Activision Blizzard.

John Pleasants, co-president of Disney Interactive, said that Infinity will now launch Aug. 18, whereas Disney had originally planned a June launch.

On Thursday, a Wall Street analyst noted that Disney CEO Bob Iger has stated that profitability at Disney Interactive was a 2013 goal and that Infinity was "an important swing factor."

The analyst, Mike Morris of Davenport & Co., said the delay could cost Disney about $30 million in third-quarter operating income before depreciation and amortization. "We see this as an incremental negative relative to sentiment as the goalposts are once again moved at Disney’s Interactive division," the analyst wrote. 

Morris, though, kept his "buy" recommendation for Disney shares, and Disney investors didn’t seem to care too much about the game's delay, as the stock rose 1 percent to $57.75 on Thursday.

Infinity is expected to allow users to mix together unrelated Disney characters, such as Jack Sparrow and Cinderella. Players will use traditional -- not virtual -- action figures to unlock different elements of the video game.

Disney announced Infinity at an event at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood two months ago. Back then, it was understood that Disney was timing the game's release to Monsters University, which opens June 21. The characters Mike and Sulley from that movie are also featured in Infinity, which will retail for about $75.

On Thursday, though, Pleasants said in a statement that Disney has "moved the launch date for Disney Infinity to Aug. 18 to capitalize on the critical fall retail season."

Email: Paul.Bond@THR.com

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