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Game has suffered a slump in profits as consumers wait for a new generation of games consoles to hit the shelves and old gear is sold off at knock down prices.

Publishing its results for the year to the end of January, the high street game retailer reported that pre-tax profits plunged to £5.4m compared to £29m a year earlier.

This disappointing slide came as turnover increased over the same period from £576.6m to £645.1m.

"This was an immensely difficult transitional year and it is disappointing to report such a sharp drop in profits," Game chairman Peter Lewis said. "We expect the UK market to continue to be very competitive during 2006, particularly in older formats."

However, Lewis is optimistic that things will improve. Sony has pencilled in November 2006 as the worldwide launch date for its long-awaited Playstation 3 and the Nintendo Revolution console is tipped to hit Europe next year.

Supply concerns regarding the availability of hardware and software on the Sony PSP and Microsoft Xbox 360 platforms have also improved, with the retailer saying it ended the year strongly.

By mid afternoon, Game's share price was down 2.25p (2.74 per cent) at 79.75p. ®

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