Another console game, port, rape of series has happened in front of our eyes. From Electronic Arts' and Black Box, we have Need for Speed: The Run. NFS: The Run is powered by Battlefield 3's gorgeous, pant-swellingly beautiful, make-you-call-out-mom-in-your-dreams amazing graphics engine, Frostbite 2.0.
Even though the game is powered by that amazing engine, the game is locked to 30fps. What? Am I joking? No. The Run is locked to just 30fps. Now, this may work for other titles, but for a game capable of oh-so-much more on the PC, it's still locked. Locked frame rates on consoles can work, but what if you've just dumped your hard earned cash on a new X79-based system with Quad SLI GeForce GTX 580's?
Wow. It was 10 years ago today that Microsoft unleashed the Xbox onto the gaming world. 100,000 units were shipped to retailers in the first week after its launch, and 1.5 million were sold before the end of 2001. This made the Xbox the best-selling video game console launch on record, and quite the achievement [unlocked?] for Microsoft. The picture below shows Edward Glucksman, where Bill Gates hands over the very first Xbox video game system to him.
10 years later, Microsoft have quite the collection of additions to the Xbox brand such as the current Xbox 360, Xbox LIVE and Kinect for 360. Xbox LIVE boasts 35 million members worldwide who spend 2.1 billion hours per month on the service. Kinect for 360 set a Guinness World Record for the fastest-selling consumer electronic device, selling 8 million in just 60 days.
I still personally remember the original Xbox, Halo looked stunning. Absolutely stunning. Project Gotham Racing saw me pouring unlimited amounts of hours into it. Since then, Microsoft seem to have concentrated more on their Xbox products than PC, which is disappointing for PC owners, but great for console gamers. Let's hope we don't have to wait 3 - 4 more years for another Xbox, launch one next year, Microsoft. We all need the push for games.
We've had some truly amazing games over the last few months, and Skyrim is definitely one of the creme of the crop. The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim has sold over 3.4 million copies at retail in its first 2 days on sale. Keep in mind that this is without the inclusion of digital sales (Steam, etc).
This is an increase of over 600-percent on top of what Oblivion sold, with an opening of just 490,000 copies. Skyrim is set to outsell Oblivion in mere weeks. 59-percent of units sold were on the Xbox 360 (over 2 million copies) and 27-percent were on the PS3. The PC? Just 14-percent, again, without digital sales included.
In the developmental stages, DICE had intentions of making Battlefield 3 a contendor in the e-Sports community. What happened? Origin and Battlelog happened, that's what. Battlelog is good, it allows you to support clans through "Platoons", which organizes squads, but its far from perfect.
There could be a future where Battlelog allows you to schedule events, formally and publicly challenge other platoons to a match or tournament, which would show up on the Battlefeed. If DICE introduced the Battlerecorder, that would be another huge tick in the e-Sports book of awesomeness. Spectator mode would also be a huge addition, allowing people to sit in on a live match being played.
Sony are starting their gift-giving season right now with the introduction of a brand new PlayStation move bundle that includes two Move games, Sports Champions and Medieval Moves: Deadmund's Quest.
This bundle is set to hit retailers nationwide next week and contains everything you need to have a fun game night, the PlayStation Move motion controller, PlayStation Eye camera, and a copy of the greatest-selling PlayStation Move title Sports Champion and Medieval Moves: Deadmund's Quest for $99.99 MSRP!
Medieval Moves is a game specifically designed for PlayStation Move, where you use your PS Move motion controller to sword fight, shoot arrows, and fling throwing stars at your enemies. It also offers support for full stereoscopic 3D.
While we can get mixed up in the David vs Goliath battle that is Call of Duty vs Battlefield, we can forget another amazing open-world RPG launched from Bethesda. No, wait, no we can't. Skyrim has been getting its fair share of press too, and while it might be able to boast of nearly half a billion in first-day sales, it can boast with its near-perfect reviews.
It looks like its gotten 90-percent or higher in every review, without me over-exaggerating. I'll let a few quotes from some reviews convince you:
The sheer size of the adventure, both in terms of its environment and in the amount of activities available to the player, is mind-blowing.
It's one thing when a game offers dozens of hours of gameplay; it's quite another when that gameplay is good enough you'll want to live in its world for that long.
Modern Warfare 3 breaks one-day entertainment sales records, developers beg customers for better Metacritic ratings
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 has done it again, it has become to biggest entertainment launch of all time, smashing the previous record set by... Call of Duty: Black Ops last year. MW3 took in over $400 million in revenue in just 24 hours, selling 6.5 million copies of the game across 3 platforms in the US and UK.
Black Ops pulled in $360 million on its opening day last year, with Modern Warfare 2 raking in $310 million in the first 24 hours. Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotickt says:
We believe the launch of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is the biggest entertainment launch of all time in any medium, and we achieved this record with sales from only two territories. Other than Call of Duty, there has never been another entertainment franchise that has set opening day records three years in a row. Life-to-date sales for the Call of Duty franchise exceed worldwide theatrical box office for 'Star Wars' and 'Lord of the Rings,' two of the most successful entertainment franchises of all time.
With Skyrim being released (and early for us Australians - available now at JB Hifi), we have news from Skyrim director Todd Howard that Skyrim's Radiant Quest System will procedurally generate a near infinite number of quests for players.
Howard says "the vibe of the game is that it's something that you can play forever." Skyrim's Radiant Quest System can randomly generate new tasks based on your progress within Skyrim. For example, an innkeeper might request that you hunt for bandits in a place you haven't found yet, or an aspiring alchemist could request that you collect 10 undiscovered flowers for his work. Howard claims that the options are endless.
World of Warcraft once commanded the ability to brag that it had 11 million users at its peak, but it has dropped considerably over the past three months alone by losing 800,000 subscribers. Over the past year, the MMORPG has lost a crazy 1.7 million subscribers.
WoW's seven-year anniversary is coming up, as well as Mists of Pandaria being announced, should spark some subscribers. Maybe pulling the older ones who have "retired" from World of Warcraft back into the loot and grind fest, or bring in some fresh blood. Maybe the releases of AAA titles such as Skyrim, Battlefield 3 and Modern Warfare 3 are pulling the faithful users away?
What about you? Have you quit? Are you still grinding away waiting for the next expansion pack to be released into the wild? Or have you left the green pastures of the MMORPG world for some FPS action?
My readers will know I'm a lover of FPS titles, and I used to be the biggest fanboy of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. I loved it. I must have played hundreds and hundreds of hours of multiplayer and just never got sick of it. Today, my good friend Sean posts a link to a YouTube video on my Facebook wall titled "Infinity Ward recycles buildings on MW3 straight from COD4."
I wasn't surprised by the title, but thought I'd take a look. I thought it would just be a building that some eagle-eyed gamer has noticed... but no, it's a massive building, from my favourite COD4 map: Pipeline. The entire building is copy/pasted directly into the single-player campaign of Modern Warfare 3.
How ridiculous can this be? Is it laziness? Is this how Activision pumps out yearly releases of COD? Surely with hundreds of millions in production budgets across multiple studios with one of the biggest game-related companies in the world, could hire some extra peons to code up a map in a 1 - 2 year development cycle. Take a look for yourself, I think it's a joke, personally. Not a funny-ha-ha joke, but a slap-in-your-face, joke.
This is something that isn't surprising, but EA president Frank Gibeau has been talking about Battlefield 4. Twitter user Brandon Winfrey posted that during a keynote at the University of Southern California, where Gibeau reportedly said "There is going to be a Battlefield 4."
This is pretty obvious considering the success the Battlefield franchise has had, and just how amazing Battlefield 3 has been. When Gibeau was asked about the statement, a rep for EA told IGN the following:
Frank was speaking broadly about the Battlefield brand - a brand that EA is deeply passionate about and a fan community that EA is committed to.
L.A. Noire has enjoyed high praise on the console, but now its time for the PC to get some of that 40s-themed goodness. L.A. Noire: The Complete Edition has either launched, or will launch within the next day or so (depending on region) and includes a bunch of additions and highlights over the console counterpart.
L.A. Noire: The Complete Edition includes all previously released DLC for the console versions (including additional outfits, weapons, and cases such as "Nicholson Electroplating", "Reefer Madness", "Naked City", "Slip of the Tongue", "Consul's Car" and more) and makes them available to players from the start.
New for the PC version is, support for NVIDIA's 3D Vision, enhanced resolutions and graphical performance, keyboard mapping and gamepad support. You can grab it from the Steam Store.
One of the current "it really pisses me off" problems in Battlefield 3 is in regard to the tactical light you can spec up on your soldier. There have been many complaints about this and DICE have promised a change will be coming in Battlefield 3's next patch.
In order to show the problem to people, DICE's Alan Kertz has posted three screenshots on his Twitter account. In the first one, the game is shown with no tactical lighting as a point of reference. The second shot is with the current implementation of tactical lighting and the final shot is what players will see after the upcoming patch.
Ah, RumorTT time, and today we have some news of the next-generation [gaming] console from Microsoft. Why did I put [gaming] in and not the actual word? Well, it might not be a hardcore gaming console after all. The Xbox 720 as its most commonly referred to, is reportedly codenamed "Loop".
Loop is said to be much smaller than the Xbox 360, will reportedly cost less to produce in the hopes of achieving higher Kinect adoption according to Microsoft leak blogger MS Nerd. The next-generation Xbox is also said to be based on a modified version of the yet-to-be-announced Windows 9.
Yep! Windows 9! MS Nerd also said that:
It will use a Zune HD-like hardware platform-a 'main' processor with multiple dedicated assistive cores for graphics, AI, physics, sound, networking, encryption and sensors. It will be custom designed by Microsoft and two partners based on the ARM architecture.
It's official, Skyrim has gone gold today, with the game only due on Friday. Bethesda's latest and greatest hack-and-slash you-can-do-it-all title might actually hit store shelves a little early depending on where you're based and what version you purchased.
If you pre-ordered through Steam, it is set to unlock on 11/10/11 instead of the advertised 11/11/11 date. Pre-loading isn't available at the moment, but it shouldn't be too far behind since its gone GOLD today! Wow, how time has flown.
We had Deus Ex: Human Revolution a few months ago, Battlefield 3 a few weeks ago, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 is out today and now the news of Skyrim going Gold
Square Enix's Deus Ex: Human Revolution has sailed past 2.18 million copies sold, as found out from their financial figures as part of their bi-annual financial report. It revealed a year-on-year fall in net sales of 15-percent between April and September.
Net profile for the same period was up by 115-percent to approximately £30 million, with one of those titles contributed quite a bit to it, DX:HR. The vast majority of those 2.18 million copies sold were in Europe, surprisingly.
Dungeon Siege 3 sales you ask? They're only at 820,000 units. How about Minecraft? Minecraft has an impressive 4 million sales, despite the game not even fully released yet and only in a playable beta state. It goes on sale later this month, though.
A fresh video of Hitman Absolution has been uploaded complete with Director's Commentary from Game Director Tore Blystad and Gameplay Director Christian Elverdam.
The near 17 minute long video gives a behind the scenes rundown of the upcoming fifth entry in the Hitman game series which runs on IO Interactive's proprietary Glacier 2 game engine.
Join Game Director Tore Blystad and Gameplay Director Christian Elverdam as they take you behind-the-scenes of the award-winning Hitman: Absolution, with a 17 minute commentary version of "Run For Your Life" playthrough. Learn first-hand what it takes to create a living and breathing world, gain new insight into the creation and ambition for the game and get a taste of what players can expect when they enter the mindset of the original assassin: Agent 47.
The game is due for release in 2012. A definitive date for its launch has not yet been made official.
Kmart have let a copy of Modern Warfare 3 slip off the shelves, and four days before its released, sold on eBay for an astonishing $1,725. Of course the buyer is anonymous, but there is one [lucky?] person out there who happened to value a leaked copy of Modern Warfare 3 at $1,725.
$1,725. That number is huge. Especially for an Xbox 360 copy, consider this; you could buy a full HD TV, Xbox 360 console and a handful of games for that kind of money. But, to a diehard fan, or someone who just wants it before everyone else (COD-peen?), then it would be invaluable to that person.
The problem with this? It takes three-to-four days for the game to be shipped as on the eBay delivery status it clearly states "Delivery: Estimated within 3-4 business days". Can you imagine how your heart would feel if it stopped beating for a second? That's what this person would feel when they realised they'd be waiting to pretty much on the day of proper release of MW3, and they'd get their copy. But, at $1,725.
I stumbled across this video today, which is from the same two guys who bought the world the live-action Battlefield 3 video which featured "Fearless CPU player who loves running down dark corridors" and "Sitting-down terrorist with no peripheral vision", comes a Skyrim-themed short film.
The two guys behind it, Rob Hardy and Jarrad Cody are also from my home town, Adelaide, South Australia. I noticed some of their props looked like local brands, and then at the end of the Battlefield 3 video they said that the prize giveaway was to be picked up from Adelaide, SA. Small world! Anyway, check out the Somewhat Skyrim video below:
Rainbow 6 series' new title has been confirmed today called Rainbow 6 Patriots and is the latest Tom Clancy first-person shooter which won't see the light of day until 2013. This marks a five-year gap in between Rainbow Six console releases as the most recent of them was Vegas 2 in March 2008.
The wait is possibly at the fault of Vegas 2, which was criticized at the time for being too similar to the original Rainbow Six: Vegas, released in November 2006. The setting for Patriots hasn't been confirmed with the only nugget of information to go on is that it "captures the reality of modern-day terrorism". The game is being developed by Ubisoft Montreal, "with the support of" Ubisoft Toronto and Ubisoft Red Storm.
You would think that a company the size of Activision would not let this happen so close to launch, especially since Elite was announced so long ago now. Alas, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Elite will not launch on PC with the game, and will be released sometime after the game itself.
This is due to the developers saying the PC is "insecure", where they're worried people will hack the system. Those statistics can't be hacked, it would cause the world to implode and would be equal to the consequences of dividing by zero! Beachhead Studio head Chacko Sonny says:
We're as committed as ever to the PC, but the need to ensure a safe PC environment is greater than ever. It's really extensive. We need more time to get there, so Elite on PC will not launch on Day 1. We're working our butts off to make it happen, but we won't release it until we know that PC gamers can enjoy Elite as it's meant to be. The issue here is that the PC is an insecure platform. Without a central, trusted resource for stats, a lot of our competition features become unfair. We can't give away prizes when people can easily cheat their stats. Leaderboards are less fun when a lot of the users are there unfairly.