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DICE GM Karl-Magnus Troedsson has confirmed that development for Battlefield 3 switched from lead platform on PC to consoles half way through the development "in order to meet release on time". Troedsson elaborates:
We said originally that the PC was the lead SKU of the game, but in mid-production we switched to console as lead platform to make sure we could get all the versions done for release. Our ambition at DICE is to use the power of each individual platform to get the most out of the game. In the case of the PS3... I understand that if you compare it to a high-end PC, it's not going to look as good. But if you compare it to other games on the PS3, including other games we've done previously, I have to say I'm very happy with how it looks. Hopefully people will agree when they look at it in the same way.
The state of gaming is in disarray, but the problem is that 90-percent of gamers don't really notice it. It's the old-school gamers, the early FPS titles that were remembered, the fast-paced, PC-exclusive, hardware-loving, crazy-insane FPS titles from the 90s that are the most enjoyed FPS games of all time. Back in a day when gaming wasn't mainstream, when a PC gaming system would give you hours of joy with hard games, not corridor shooters, with puzzles and hours of head-scratching now just simplified, easy games.
There's a video I found online, saying that if id Software's FPS defining Quake were built today, what would it be. Check it out below:
First we find there's a million and one load screens and advertisements before the game starts, as the game starts we find the main menu displayed. In the main menu is "new game", "options", "DLC" and "exit". The video shows "options" and within options, "graphics". Graphics has an awesome display of "on" and "off", which is taking the piss out of the current console ports like Crysis 2 which feature lack lustre graphic options when compared to even the original Crysis.
It was only hours ago that we found out Battlefield 3 had shipped 10 million copies with retailers begging for more, but straight from EA itself, we find out that Battlefield 3 has an estimated 5 million sold in its first week of availability. That is a bloody good number, but what most people want to know is how the numbers are split between the consoles and PC versions of the game.
EA have also talked about the various stability issues with Battlefield 3 which have haunted it since the start. EA told Ars Technica:
We are happy to report that we had a great weekend with server stability at roughly 98.9 percent. While some players experienced intermittent outages of online services due to high volume, internal estimates show that servers and service stabilized, ensuring that players were connected and enjoying the game, with a commitment to support the game as a software service, EA is listening to consumer feedback and is making daily updates and improvements to ensure an optimal online experience for all.
Guess who's back? The Battlefield 3 on Steam rumors are back, that's who. This time its thanks to a competition held by Sapphire, which was found on the Sapphire Select Club website. One of the prizes in this competition is "[o]ne (1) PC Game code for Battlefield 3, redeemable for the game on Steam". Of course, this could be a mistake on Sapphire's behalf.
Kotaku does raise an interesting point, that Sapphire are most likely so used to writing competition terms and conditions that usually reference Steam codes, that they just assumed it would be the same with this competition. But... there's also the PBSetup.exe file, which is used to install Punk Buster for Battlefield installs, has been updated and now shows the following install files:
C:Program Files (x86)Electronic ArtsBattlefield 3
C:Program Files (x86)SteamSteamAppscommonbattlefield 3
C:Program FilesSteamSteamAppscommonbattlefield 3
C:Program FilesElectronic ArtsBattlefield 3
There is now some more solid proof, and with thousands upon thousands chanting for Battlefield 3 to be on Steam, could we see an eventual release on the popular platform? Maybe...
Valve will make creating Portal 2 test chambers much easier, wants the community to live long and prosper
Valve have been been quite good with DLC and user-created content, and Portal 2 from what it seems, is set to get a serious injection of not only awesome, but ease. Valve released Portal 2's authoring tools earlier this year and it has unleashed various custom puzzles for Portal 2 from the community. So far more than 700 puzzles have been created.
It's not a massive success, as many spiring modders have complained that the toolkit is too complicated to use. Many gamers have also complained that it's too difficult to find and play the community-generated test chambers. Valve have not been sitting on their hands during this, as they've vowed to resolve both lingering issues.
As you can see from the above two screenshots, Valve look to be offering the masses with a puzzle creator that offers "simplified" but "powerful" controls. Valve have not talked about any specifics on the new authoring tools, but the two screenshots above seem to indicate it would be quite simple indeed. I feel a Sims vibe when I look at them, and that is a simple enough game, but powerful at the same time.
If you haven't played Battlefield 3 yet, I don't know why you haven't - it is an amazing achievement of a game. For me, it has been one of (if not the) best multiplayer experiences of my life. DICE have followed through (technical issues aside). EA have announced that they have shipped 10 million copies to retailers worldwide, with many retailers requesting more stock.
Three million copies of Battlefield 3 had been sold as pre-orders before the game was released, which was confirmed by EA's COO, Peter Moore in an investor call a few days ago. Even though Battlefield 3 has been very successful, they [EA and DICE] still want to keep its single player campaign in the future Battlefield titles.
EA's Frank Gibeau says:
The single play experience is important. It's a great way to get fans into the experience, have them train up and get ready for multiplayer. A lot of fans just enjoy having that single player experience. So I think you have to have both.
Electronic Arts have just announced that their digital distribution platform, Origin, will now be offering third-party PC games starting in November. The first wave of publishers to sign a deal with Origin include Warner Bros., THQ and Capcom. This will bring hit titles such as Batman: Arkham City and Saints Row: The Third to Origin, with more games hitting Origin in the coming months.
Origin already has over 100 EA games in its library and adding additional publishers only cements their service into competition against Valve and their digital distribution platform, Steam. David DeMartini (shaken, not stirred, thanks), senior vice president of Origin at EA says:
Since launch, we've had overwhelming support from both publishers and developers across the gaming industry, recognizing Origin as an opportunity to deliver more of their great content straight to consumers across the globe. We're excited to welcome Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, THQ and Capcom as the first publishers to offer their games via Origin.
Shares in Take-Two Games have risen by 6-percent following the announcement of Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto 5 earlier this week. On Tuesday, Rockstar Games confirmed that GTA V's first teaser trailer will hit the Internet on November 2, where the announcement was made live with the game's official logo which shows a green-colored Roman numeral 'V' wrapped with a banner sporting the word 'Five.'
Of course, we all know how the Internet and fans work. As soon as there's a teaser for something, there has to be an easter egg or hidden something (image, word, art, etc) within the tease. GTA V as you can imagine, is no different. Some keen gamers have discovered that the logo displayed above, is identical to the design of the $5 dollar bank noted issued in 1889 by the US Mint. An American setting has been rumored, but would Rockstar be breaking the rules by taking GTA back to the pre-1900s era?
Do you like to have options? Enjoy portable gaming? Was looking forward to Sony's NGP, Vita? Well, games capable of saving directly to their own cartridges, won't offer gamers the option to save to an external cards. This means you will never receive a choice. Games that can save internally, will always do so.
Kotaku Japan also learned that you'll have to have a memory card in the Vita at startup to operate games that require external storage. Sony also told Kotaku Japan that in addition to save data, some games may use the memory card for DLC.
Disappointed? Hurt? Well, Sony have doen this before... but people were thinking that they might play the game differently with the Vita. People might have wanted to save a few dollars on not buying external memory, but you'll require this for DLC and the like. Frustrating? Yep!
Sony Online Entertainment's upcoming MMO/FPS hybrid, Planetside 2 is set to go insane on 'map' sizes (can we even call them maps now?). Planetside 2 is said to take a "Halo-esque" spin on its sci-fi universe, where it aims to combine the persistent world of an MMO, with the visceral, responsive mechanics of a first-person shooter. Planetside 2's creative director, Matt Higby talked about the staggering size of the new battlefields:
"We have enormous, enormous gameplay space," says Higby. Planetside 2's settings which are based on continents on the planet Auraxis, measure an insane eight kilometers square, with weapons capable of firing a full kilometer in distance. Higby continues saying "One of our largest development efforts on this project has been hand crafting every single area of those eight-by-eight kilometer continents".
In these eight-by-eight kilometer environments, three factions duke it out: The Terran Republic, The New Conglomerate and The Vanu Sovereignty. The battles are set to be epic, with Higby stating that "you're going to be fighting in battles sometimes when it's 200 people fighting against 30 people, because there's only 30 people defending that base and then suddenly 200 people log in from teh other ground and go do it".