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Nintendo financials signal big comeback

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 6 days, 22 hours ago

Nintendo today published its 2017 Annual Report in English, highlighting various financial data and giving consumers, investors, and gamers a better look at the company's current market situation.

 

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Nintendo's latest annual report is filled to the bring with interesting data. The brief chronicles Nintendo's performance across four different fiscal years in key metrics like net sales, operating income, total profits, profit per share, net assets, and more. FY17 was a successful year for the Kyoto-based console-maker, and the new Nintendo Switch handheld-console hybrid helped rally shares, net sales, and total profits to new heights. The Nintendo 3DS also did well throughout the year--to date the handheld has more than 66 million units sold.

 

I've prepared a series of graphs that illustrate Nintendo's year-over-year performance compared to three past fiscal years, and you can check them out below.

 

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NVIDIA amps up EVE: Valkyrie with VRWorks Ultra graphics

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Video Cards | Posted: 1 week ago

If you're playing EVE: Valkyrie on your VR headset with your PC, you might want to know that NVIDIA has just annoucned its VRWorks Ultra graphics setting for EVE: Valkyrie.

 

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The new VRWorks Ultra setting improves the quality of the cockpit lighting in EVE: Valkyrie, increases the quality of lighting and shadowing in every single area and level of the game, increases the fidelity of reflections and shadows, and even projectiles receive dynamic lights.

 

NVIDIA's press release says: "A lighting model developed by NVIDIA and incorporated by CCP for EVE: Valkyrie uses high-quality, physically-based lighting effects from NVIDIA Volumetric Lighting to add immersive, awe-inspiring shafts of bright light (God rays) to many scenes and levels, transforming their appearance. EVE: Valkyrie also includes a new anti-aliasing technique developed by NVIDIA called Multi-Sample G-Buffer Anti-Aliasing which improves anti-aliasing by further reducing visible aliasing of geometry edges and specular highlights, giving players a superior visual experience".

Samsung could announce Galaxy Note 8 on August 23

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: 1 week ago

The biggest smartphone of the year could be the release of the Galaxy Note 8 from Samsung, which could be the golden kick to the guts that hurts Apple when it launches the iPhone 8 later this year gimped, lacking its wireless charging function that's causing a "sense of panic" at Apple.

 

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Well, according to a new tease from notorious mobile leaker Evan Blass, who now writes for VentureBeat, the Galaxy Note 8 will be announced on August 23. Samsung's new Galaxy Note 8 will reportedly rock the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 or Samsung's own Exynos 8895 processor, but have its RAM bumped up to 6GB.

 

Blass adds that the Note 8 will be the first Samsung smartphone with a dual-camera set up, both being 12MP with independent optical image stabilization for the lens. The fingerprint sensor will stay in the same spot as the S8, which is a real let down if it's true.

Mobile game development costs rise in Japan

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week ago

Japanese games-makers like DeNa, who's partnered with Nintendo to make games like Super Mario Run, are spending more and more to develop mobile games.

 

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The cost of mobile games development is rising in Japan, says Dr. Serkan Toto, CEO of Japaneses games consultancy Kantan Games. According to Dr. Toto's analysis of recent Japanese developer filings and reports for three major games-makers, the costs of mobile games development has risen from $3.5 to $9 million per game.

 

Nintendo-partnered mobile dev DeNA reports that each game costs about $4.5 million to develop, excluding marketing and other costs. DeNA CEO Isao Moriyasu noted during the company's Q4 earnings results briefing that the costs for mobile games development in Japan has jumped.

 

Higher costs are also affecting major players like overseas social network titan GREE. The company's Wright Flyer Studios, which Dr. Toto notes is GREE's top studio, estimates mobile game development costs to be anywhere from $4.5 million to $9 million. GREE executive and Wright Flyer Studios head Eiji Araki predicts costs could rise even further.

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Mass Effect: Andromeda's trial mode is 43GB full game

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week ago

EA today announced that Mass Effect: Andromeda's full game trial is now available on all platforms, allowing players to try the game out before they buy.

 

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All of EA's biggest games typically come with a "first play" trial mode that's more like a locked off full game rather than a demo. Mass Effect: Andromeda's first play trial was our first glimpse at the unfortunate glitches and facial animations that plagued the game, turning the then-massively anticipated spin-off into a laughing stock. Now that trial is back, and it's just as big as ever.

 

The Mass Effect: Andromeda trial is simply the full 43GB game with a 10-hour countdown timer attached. EA is betting that after you download the full game (which is almost 1/10th of the PS4's base 500GB hard drive, mind) and play the game for 10 hours, you're much more likely to buy the full version to continue your progress.

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Nintendo kills New 3DS production in Japan

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week ago

Nintendo has ceased production of the New 3DS handheld in Japan due to lackluster sales.

 

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While Nintendo has no official plans to retire the full 3DS family of handhelds, the Japanese games-maker says it will no longer produce its base New 3DS handheld variant. While Nintendo hasn't said so outright, the logical reasoning behind this move is twofold: the company is making room for the accessible $149 New 2DS XL is currently slated to release later this month, and the New 3DS XL has sold more units than the base New 3DS handheld in Japan.

 

The Kyoto-based console-maker recently confirmed the 3DS handheld line will live alongside the new Nintendo Switch handheld-console hybrid, and that the new Switch hardware won't cannibalize its predecessor. Nintendo President Tatsumi Kimishima says that the Switch and 3DS "do not compete directly in terms of price point or playstyle," and that the company will "run these businesses separately and in parallel."

 

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Xbox One X will be playable at Gamescom 2017

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week ago

Microsoft is bringing its new high-end 4K-ready Xbox One X console to Europe's premiere gaming conference.

 

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Today Xbox spokesperson Major Nelson confirmed that Microsoft will showcase its new hardware and games at Gamescom 2017 in Cologne, Germany. Over 27 games for Xbox and Windows 10 PCs will be playable at the show, including major first-party exclusives like Crackdown 3, Sea of Thieves and Forza Motorsport 7. European gamers will also be able to try out the new $499 Xbox One X in all of its native 4K glory.

 

The games-maker will also host an Xbox FanFest event during the show. Just like at E3 2017, the company will give away goodies and games for users who tune in via the Mixer streaming service on PC or mobiles--at E3 the company gave out copies of Rare Replay on Xbox One to Mixer viewers.

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Facebook: $200 wireless Oculus VR headset coming in 2018

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: 1 week ago

Facebook is making a new $200 mainstream wireless VR headset, something that's planned for next year, and something the social media giant is hoping to have the same effect Apple did with the original iPhone to the world, with its new $200 headset.

 

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Oculus will be making the headset, with the news of the $200 wireless VR headset breaking days after Oculus slashing the price of the Rift + Touch bundle for $399. The new codenamed "Pacific" headset is reportedly smaller than the Rift, and lighter than the mobile-based Gear VR from Samsung. The final design might change, but those with details on the new headset said it will be easy enough to pull out of your bag and start watching movies on the plane or train.

 

Inside, we should expect a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor of some sort, with gaming performance somewhere in the vicinity of the Gear VR - but not the full-blown Rift on the PC. The new Facebook VR headset will be released next year, and with a $200 price point, we might see some fierce competition in the mobile VR space.

 

Qualcomm being in the middle of it is only another market where the company can dominate, as there's nothing AMD or NVIDIA have that can compete with the powerful mobile solutions in the form of many Snapdragon processors - including next-gen products that Qualcomm are working on now.

Next-gen Xbox already in development

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: 1 week ago

On the heels of finalizing its new 4K-ready Xbox One X console, Microsoft is already laying the foundations for its next-gen Xbox system.

 

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Microsoft is strongly committed to the console space and the company's new $499 Xbox One X, which delivers native 4K gaming while playing all existing Xbox One games better, won't be the last home console the tech giant makes. Back in April we reported that Xbox division head Phil Spencer asserted the company is "planning for what happens after Scorpio in the console space."

 

Now Windows Central editor Jez Corden re-affirms Mr. Spencer's statements with claims that "Microsoft is already designing the next Xbox." Corden has gained a following for his accurate predictions and reporting on Microsoft's Xbox One X console, however it's worth noting that this news isn't exactly a surprise given Mr. Spencer's words.

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AMD Ryzen ThreadRipper 1950X: 16C/32T to cost $999

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: 1 week, 1 day ago

It looks like there's a massive leak on AMD Ryzen ThreadRipper going on right now, with VideoCardz reporting that there is a "new press deck floating around", and that we now have the list of prices for AMD's upcoming Ryzen ThreadRipper range of CPUs.

 

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AMD will reportedly lead with the flagship Ryzen ThreadRipper 1950X processor offering its massive 16C/32T of CPU power at 3.4/4.0GHz for base/boost, respectively. There will also be the ThreadRipper 1920X which will have less CPU cores at 12C/24T, and a slightly higher base clock of 3.5GHs, but the same 4GHz Turbo clock - but it'll be priced at $799.

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