CCP Games, the boys and girls behind the MMORPG that is EVE Online, have stated that they cleared more than $66 in revenue last year. EVE Online launched in 2003, with its subscriber base increasing each year, to its current total of 400,000.
Revenue has grown just as much, at a compound annual growth rate of 53-percent, bringing in a total revenue of $300 million over the game's lifetime. Profit-wise, CCP would only say that it has "very healthy margins". CCP has been experimenting with something that gets close to a free-to-play model, where it allows EVE Online's rich subscribers to essentially pay for others to play, in exchange for virtual currency, something that is used by more than 40,000 people.
Our Mobile App of the Day is Ceramic Destroyer for Android.
Easy but very addictive blasting game!
Ceramic Destroyer is a blasting game which is easy but verrrrrrry addictive. Your target is to use the bombs to explode various ceramics. But the key point is you need to destroy the whole ceramic as possible as you can, never left even one tiny piece.
You will get 1 star if you destroyed 90%, 2 stars for 95% and 3 stars for 100%.
How to play?
1: Pull the catapult
2: Adjustment angle and intensity
3: Release your finger shoot
4: Destroy at least 90% to level up
Tips: The 4 different bombs have different function
-Beautiful ceramic style pictures.
-Be full of the pleasure of explosion.
-You can destroy more than 100 different ceramics like Guitar, Butterflies, Robots, Candy and so on.
-Green Bomb: Pull the catapult to shoot the bomb
-Blue Bomb: Tap The screen to split the bomb into 3 mini-bombs
-Yellow Bomb: Tap the screen 3 times to lay out the mini-bombs
-Purple Bomb: Rub the screen to control the direction of the bomb
-More challenges coming soon
Oh noes, piracy on PC is so strong, oh noes! Until, you release a worthy game and realise, in 48 hours it's a financial success. 48 hours. Not days, weeks or months. Alan Wake debuted as an Xbox 360-exclusive, and made its way to the PC late last week.
Remedy have since come out and announced that Alan Wake on PC was profitable within just 48 hours of release. Remedy's Aki Järvilehto commented on their forums, saying:
We are very happy with the sales and hitting #1 on Steam at launch was nothing short of amazing. We recouped our development and marketing expenses during the first 48 hours. And yes, we're certainly very excited about PC.
Considering the game would've already made some bank on the Xbox 360, the PC side of it would just be a nice extra for the Finnish-based developer. Now, Remedy have said "we're certainly very excited about PC", what does that mean? Were they not excited before when they released the amazing Max Payne games? I'd love to see what Remedy could do if they had 3 years and PC-exclusivity.
According to Sony's Senior Vice President of PlayStation Brand Marketing, Guy Longworth, we should expect a Call of Duty title for the PlayStation Vita. Longworth didn't go into much detail regarding the game, saying only "we're still working on it".
Activision haven't confirmed whether the game will be a sequel within the COD franchise, a brand new experience, or even the development team behind it. We should expect the usual late-October to mid-November release schedule, as with the previous Call of Duty games since they began launching in 2003.
Just an hour ago we talked about Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, and now we have a Vita-exclusive title? Could Call of Duty be making a comeback? Entire new engine built from the ground-up? Or am I just day dreaming here?
The Internet has done it once again and has pieced together a puzzle of sorts. It's all in relation to a man called Hugo Beyer, who has worked on some big games over the years, including Beatles Rock Band, Anno 1404 and the unreleased Doom 4, and Aliens: Colonial Marines at a variety of game studios such as Terminal Reality, and Liquid Development.
According to his LinkedIn page he's working at Nerve Software, as an Artist, and has listed as his projects "Call of Duty: Black Ops 2" as well as "TBA project". Nerve has previously completed contract work for Activision, including the Treyarch-developed James Bond title, Quantum of Solace, as well as the original Call of Duty: Black Ops.
This information is much more concrete and what helps the situation is Beyer has since taken down his LinkedIn page, where the information was found. Both Activision and Nerve Software have yet to respond to this news.
Alan Kertz, Core Gameplay Designer at DICE, has let the world know that the Battlefield 3 team has been working on some gameplay tweaks. It was then talked about by the Symthic forum, where the data was combed through.
The new tweaks might not all make it in, but you can bet your bottom dollar at least some of them will. Once the members of Symthic unleashed their view of the data, Alan Kertz then confirmed this via Twitter, where he said:
yes symthic has authentic update info, your feedback on these preliminary changes will be hugely valuable for a future update.
Check out the gameplay balances here.
Our Mobile App of the Day is Portals 2D for Windows Phone.
Can you think with portals? Open a gateway to a new and exciting type of game, this Portal-inspired platformer will test your portal-toting, cake loving avatar in a world where even your existence is tested. Beautiful HD graphics, wonderful sounds, ingenious gameplay, and silky smooth animations make this game a must have.
Now you're thinking with portals.
Update 1.2: Fixed some bugs, added robots, doors, buttons and grinders, improved graphics, added more levels, tweaked controls.
iFixit are great, they truly are. Most people in the technology industry love to know how thinks work, and what is inside of them, and iFixit know this. They've got the latest and greatest Sony portable gaming system, PlayStation Vita, and have torn it apart.
Spec-wise, the PS Vita sports a 4-core ARM Cortex-A MPCore Processor, 4-core SGX543MP4+ GPU, 512MB of RAM backed up with 128MB of VRAM, a 5-inch OLED Touchscreen running a 960x544-pixel qHD display with 24-bit color, and rear capacitive multi-touch pad, front and rear 0.3-megapixel VGA cameras and two analog joysticks.
Now that we have those detailed specs out of the way, have a quick look at the innards of the PS Vita:
To check out the full teardown, click here for the PlayStation Vita teardown.
The latest trailer to Max Payne 3 is here, where it unveils more of Max's story. It seems as though whilst under Max's protection, Rodrigo Branco's wife, Fabiana, is kidnapped. Max then goes on a journey of slow-mo, gun-slinging, bodycount-crazy fest, where he uncovers the truth and returns her to safety.
All while dodging bullets from lawless stress gangs, ruthless paramilitary units, and of course, his own personal demons. The latest trailer is made from all in-game graphics, and I think it's actually looking worse than previous teases of the game.
I really expect this to be, sadly, a console port, without much being put into the PC version. I could be wrong, but from what I've seen, it's very console-centric, where the first two Max Payne games were PC-exclusive. However, I'll still be grabbing this game, just because it's Max Payne. Bring it on! Max Payne 3 arrives for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 on May 15, 2012 in North America, and on May 18, 2012 in Europe. The PC version doesn't arrive until May 29, 2012 in North America, and June 1, in Europe.
Bethesda were kind enough to release their Skyrim Creation Kit last week, with the key word there being "last week". In just under a weeks time, the Skyrim Creation Kit has allowed users around the world to release over 2,500 mods already, with those mods seeing a very tidy two million-plus downloads.
People are definitely loving the Skyrim mods, and if this is how it gets treated a week into its life... imagine 3-6 months from now. Could this be the edge Skyrim needs to catapult it into a new stratosphere of success? It seems so, with the modding community so strong, this is why the PC will never die.
It seems as though Bethesda know how to please their fans, and with the thousands of mods being created, well, every week, it should be interesting to see where this goes when it comes to future game announcements from Bethesda. Will the next Elder Scrolls outing involve more of the community? Will there be a stand-out modder who gets scooped up by Bethesda? I think we'll see that in the coming months.
Alan Wake was first teased as a PC-exclusive, running on Intel's first quad-core processors, but eventually found its way onto Microsoft's Xbox 360 console as an Xbox 360-exclusive. Now the time has come for the critically acclaimed, BAFTA-nominated, TIME Magazine Game of the Year, Alan Wake, to find its way through the dark, dimly lit forest, and onto the PC.
The game ships with both DLC packs, The Signal, and The Writer. It's not the usual run of the mill third-person action adventure game, Remedy have crafted this game into a grand, Hollywood-style story, with tonnes of atmosphere, and have crafted a game where the world feels real, you are Alan Wake.
The PC version does ship with some exclusive features:
Includes Alan Wake Special Episodes "The Signal" and "The Writer"
Experience Alan Wake's Pacific Northwest in higher resolutions and higher fidelity than the Xbox360 version.
Fully configurable mouse and keyboard support, or if you prefer to play with the Microsoft gamepad connected to your PC, you can do that too!
Lots of customizable graphics settings and support for 4:3, 16:9 and 16:10 aspect ratios!
The Far Cry 3 trailer is below for your viewing pleasure, and the game is shaping up to look good. The trailer below is pre-rendered CG, so there's no in-game graphics or gameplay shown, but what is shown definitely looks cool.
The storyline, from the trailer at least, does not look too bad at all. It looks as though you and two friends are on an island together, enjoying yourselves, having fun, drinking, what not. You get captured, one of your mates gets killed, and you escape, barely. There's a bit of running-through-the-jungle Lost style, as well as gratuitous amounts of swearing, which seem really forced.
The game is due in September, so the wait is not long now. It will hit multiple platforms, but at the moment it's unknown of the PC will get anything extra. If previous games and ports are anything to go by, I doubt the once PC-exclusive Far Cry will receive a better-than-usual PC port. Wake me up when the graphics get as good as the pre-rendered stuff in that trailer. Oh yeah.
Mass Effect 3 is set to be one of this years biggest titles, and with EA's new Origin digital distribution service to kick-start it, it should be a big change for the game itself. Little did I know, that a PC demo had arrived for Mass Effect 3.
So now that the excitement is building for the demo you've just found out about, how about I throw you another surprise? On the 17th of this month, the multi-player gets unlocked and lets you try it out however you want. Wait, there's more! If you have a Battlefield 3 online pass activated you can play it, well, right now!
I'm not able to test it right now, but if you're keen to try it out, comment below and let us know your thoughts on the game! Graphics! Sound! Acting, gameplay, mechanics, all of it. Remember that Mass Effect 3 launches with four-player co-operative play. Something that old-school PC gamers will enjoy.
Grab the demo, here.
Our Mobile App of the Day is TapSplosion for Windows Phone 7.
TapSplosion is the game that the Windows Phone 7 platform has been waiting for, and now it's even better, with Achievements! With fast, frantic and addictive gameplay you just have to try it for yourself.
In TapSplosion, you tilt your phone to control the player and tap the screen to place explosions in that position. You have to battle an oncoming enemy hoard which is constantly increasing in size and complexity and always tracking you down. If one of these enemies touches you, you will explode and it's game over for you! You get points based on combo kills, time alive and number of enemies on the screen and you can submit your score to global leaderboards and compete with other players from around the world!
Grab it from the Windows Marketplace directly on your Windows Phone 7 device, or here.
[UPDATE] And we're good! We're good people! Amendments will be made to the Classification Act 1995 and Broadcasting Services Act 1992 and will roll through in January 2013. I cannot believe this actually happened, and this shows the power of the people, and the Internet. When they work together, they can really push through new things!
News from last month told us that the new Federal Minister for Home Affairs, Jason Clare, had announced his intentions to stick to former Federal Minster for Home Affairs, Brendan O'Connor's previous plans in regards to the introduction of an R18+ adult classification for video games in Australia.
Clare stated that he would follow O'Connor's decision to introduce the R18+ bill in the February 2012 session of parliament. Well, it's February 2012, and here we are. Clare has stayed true to his word, with news arriving today that the R18+ legislation has been cleared by the Federal Parliamentary Caucus of the Australian Labor Party in its meeting in Canberra, and is now ready to be introduced in parliament.
Celebrations? Well, not quite. Federal parliament resumed just over a week ago on February 7, and in order for the R18+ bill to be passed through the Lower House (House of Representatives), Clare's office says it requires the support of at least two crossbench MP's.
Next-gen consoles and next-gen graphics engines are something that I have quite close to my heart. It's something I think needs to really evolve. I see the AAA gaming market as something that is stuck inside of a bubble.
The cause of that bubble? Consoles. I've covered this a fair bit in a few of my editorials, where I've talked about smartphones and tablets getting close to, and will eventually pass the power in current-gen consoles. Once this happens, consoles will have a hard time selling, unless we see next-gen consoles.
The previous generation of consoles teased "Full HD gaming", but delivered sub-HD gaming. Most AAA titles run at a resolution lower than 1280x720 and at frame rates less than 30fps. Of course, there are some games that run at either slightly higher resolutions, or slightly higher frame rates, but never both. We don't see games like Halo, Gears of War, Uncharted or Metal Gear Solid running at 1080p with 30fps.
Enter Unreal Engine 4.
This is something that's been needed to happen for years now, but it seems as though Microsoft's Windows Store will obviously include downloadable apps, where the Xbox and Windows brands will finally merge into one ultimate champion of awesomeness.
There was a list of recent Xbox Live games that The Verge reported on, that would be made available to purchase within the Windows 8 Consumer Preview version. Sources have now confirmed with The Daily that these games will be set within Windows' first Xbox-branded portal, instead of the older "Games for Windows" platform. This will now completely integrate Xbox functionality, including achievements and friends lists, and will look like the recent Xbox Live app for iPad in terms of design.
The preview version of Windows 8 will sell older games, but sources are saying that some games currently in development for Xbox Live will be deliberately delayed to launch with Windows 8 in September. Names of these games have not yet been revealed, but sources are saying that they're a mix of "casual and hardcore" games, some of which have already been announced as future Xbox Live-based titles.
Valve's Steam has had quite the press lately, last year they announced Steam Guard, which featured increased security for gamers, but in November of last year, we reported that Steam confirmed they had been hacked. This was after the Steam Forums went down for "maintenance".
This year, Valve released Steam for Mobile, which was a step in a different direction, and then just a few days ago confirmed that last year's hack was actually worse than previously thought. So as you can see, they're having a hard time.
Our Mobile App of the Day is Live Holdem Poker Pro for Android.
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Tim Sweeney, Epic CEO and Technical Director spoke at the 2012 D.I.C.E. Summit, where he predicted that the number of platforms for games will shrink to three or four over time. He also added that consumer have many choices when it comes to gaming platforms with tablets, PCs, smartphones, Macs, consoles and new handhelds. He adds:
This is too many platforms. We're seeing now iPad sales have surpassed the sales of PCs. This is a real revelation, this is a product that wasn't invented until a few years ago and its basically supplanting personal computers. Over time these platforms will be whittled down to a competing set of platforms to maybe three winners worldwide across everything - computers, game platforms, smartphones...We should expect a lot of consolidation here and winners and losers according to who picks the right directions and executes successfully.
Sweeney also predicted that there would be new devices on the market, as well as new technologies for developers to tap into:
I see a bright future for technology and its implications on games. The ability of game developers to exploit another thousand-fold increase in computing power on future generations of platforms. Some of it will be consoles, some of it PC and some of it tablets. The form factor we can't predict, but the opportunity is there. Our industry's brightest days are yet to come.
Well, to celebrate the release of Skyrim's new freshly-baked Creation Kit on Valve's Steam, Bethesda and the creators of Portal have joined forces and released an official mod for Skyrim. THis brings Portal 2's Space Core to Skyrim, how exciting!
To celebrate the opening of the Steam Workshop for Skyrim, Valve and Bethesda have teamed up to bring you the Portal 2 Space Core mod, which will let the aggressively space-centric little robot tag along on your adventures in Tamriel.
Also, since Skyrim was the only major release of 2011 without Nolan North in it, you should consider this mod a patch to fix that problem. You can now feel free to include Skyrim in the "Nolan North" section of your video game library, which is to say, your video game library.
This is how you keep your fans happy on both sides of the fence, Valve and Bethesda, FTW.