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Microsoft has confirmed what the Xbox 360 Holiday bundle for the North American market will come with. The bundle will be priced at $299 which includes a 250GB 360 Slim, wireless controller, wired headset, three months of Xbox live and a couple of games - those being Halo Reach and Fable III. It's been indicated that Fable III will be included on a disc, while Halo Reach will be provided via a download token.
A Kinect bundle will also be on offer throughout the holiday season costing $399. It will include a 250GB Xbox 360, wireless controller, wired headset and of course, Kinect. Games wise, it includes Kinect Adventures and Carnival Games: Monkey See Monkey Do. There's three months of Xbox Live with this one as well.
Not much of a price drop there, but analysts have said that the console is still selling well enough at the current pricing that Microsoft is confident it will see continued strong sales of its console well into the holiday season.
400 million. Just think about that number, its huge. Absolutely, huge. Today at the Web 2.0, Rovio's GM Andrew Stalbow took the stage, shooting off some Angry Birds stats that has given us an idea at the growth of the [now] franchise over the past few months. At Disrupt, Stalbow stated that Angry Birds has pushed past 350 million cumulative downloads across platforms (and was selling 1 million t-shirts and plush toys each and every month - myself included), and today, Angry Birds has ballooned out to more than 400 million downloads.
If that number wasn't impressive enough, heres some more: Angry Birds is seeing 130 million monthly users, 30 million daily active users, and 300 million minutes of game play... wait for it, each and every day. That's not per month, thats 300 million minutes of game play every single day. Wow, wow, wow. On the scale side of things, we've had up to 400 million, but what would $0 give us? That's Rovio's total marketing budget. $0. Yes, nothing.
Waiting anxiously for the NGP from Sony; the PlayStation Vita? Well, wait no longer. There's finally some details today with Sony Computer Entertainment Australia and New Zealand confirming today that the PlayStation Vita will launch on February 23, 2012. This follows an announcement made by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe (SCEE) today confirming that the PlayStation Vita will launch through Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Australisia from February 22, 2012.
The Wi-Fi model will be available in Australia from AUD $349.95 and New Zealand from NZD $449.95. If you're after a 3G model it will set you back $100 more than the stock models at AUD $449.95 and NZD $549.95.
This pricing is a bit of a kick in the nuts, at roughly $150 more than it is priced in the US, even though our dollar is doing very, very well at the moment. I suspect sales on the Vita will be quite low in Australia, with people importing them. $150 more is a bit rich, and this isn't the 90s anymore, Sony. Give it a $50 premium and I'm sure you'll keep your Vita customers much happier.
EA and DICE have revealed some interesting stats regarding the open beta of Battlefield 3 with some impressive numbers indeed. Over 47 billion shots were fired, 2.2 billion regenerated health contributed by Assault players.
19 million people "lost their dog tags at the end of a knife" (I think I only took two people down with a knife, boo), 21 million M-Com stations were destroyed, 635.6 meters was the longest recorded headshot (I did one at around 550m, so I was close!), 1.5 billion kills were registered and finally, 8,125,310 users participated in the Battlefield 3 open beta.
Impressive numbers to say the least. I'm very surprised at the number of players though, over 8 million! That is a huge chunk of gamers. I would love to know the split on what platforms they used too... was it more on PC? Xbox or PS3?
Well, my dear wife: I have now found what I want for Christmas. One of these, please. Fan of Battlefield 3? Want some 360-degree, almost real life FPS simulation? Well, on Monday the 24th of October, watch The Gadget Show at 8PM on Channel 5.
This is a [truly] unique FPS simulator in which it turns gaming to near reality as you move, aim, fire and get shot within a 360-degree immersive environment. The team used a pre-release copy of Battlefield 3 and poached a team of top technology experts from across Europe to built a true one-of-a-kind simulator.
While Australians have generally been jealous of the expos around the world such as E3 in the US and GamesCom in Europe, we now have had our taste of a Games Expo in the form of EB Game Expo 2011. Gaming is a huge deal these days, with the industry worth a crazy $74 billion, with the industry generating more incoming that Hollywood does making movies - if that's not big enough, I don't know what is!
13,000 tickets were sold to EB Games Expo 2011, this was even before the event had started! The only way to get in after that was to line up at the door and see if you could try your luck there. Tickets were available to Australian gamers months before the event itself, with general admission tickets purchased online setting you back $29.95. VIP experience tickets were available (limited to 400 per session) at $99.95. The VIP tickets gave you access to the "VIP-only" lines to try out games.
Which FPS was more popular? Modern Warfare 3 or Battlefield 3? Well, if you guessed MW3, you were wrong. Activision's queue, while long (wrapping around their huge stand) was just no match for EA Games' queue for Battlefield 3. Another huge line was seen, which was for, of course, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.
Well... this is just mind-blowing. Gamers Gate is offering the entire Grand Theft Auto series for just £8.74. This includes, GTA 1, GTA 2, GTA III, GTA: Vice City, GTA: San Andreas, GTA IV, and GTA Episodes From Liberty City. Keep in mind that GTAs 1 and 2 are already free, but that is still an absolutely incredible deal. Gamers Gate's website has it usually listed as £34.95, where its 75-percent off down to £8.74.
Gamers Gate's website also offers the game to be gifted, so if you want a cheap Christmas present for a friend or family member, a bit (well, a lot) of GTA action can be had for a very low price. The offer lasts for another 6 days and 2 hours, so if you want to get in, I suggest you get in quick. This price is an absolute steal!
DICE's very, very highly anticipated FPS, Battlefield 3, has been leaked to various torrent sites, over a week from the official launch. The PC version sits at just under 10GB in size, at 9.96GB, and its single-player portion of the game is fully playable. The only thing that would make sense on how its leaked, is if a retailer got their mits on a copy, and leaked it. But then the next question is, why did the retailer break the street release date?
Usually we see leaks of the console versions, so this does mark one of the first times a triple-A PC title has been leaked before release. Of course, it means the multiplayer side of the game can't be accessed, as this requires a valid Origin account. With the game not yet released, this won't happen. But it will effect sales on PC for sure, and will definitely get those frowns turned upside down over at DICE.
Our Download of the Day today is Xfire 1.140 Build 44598.
Xfire is a free tool that automatically keeps track of when and where gamers are playing PC games online and lets their friends join them easily. It works regardless of game type, server browser, or gaming service that a player is using.
Xfire combines instant messaging, a server browser, peer-to-peer file downloads, in-game messaging, screenshot and video capture and one of the most active gaming communities in the world into a small, simple package. Best of all, it's free!
The latest version includes the following changes:
Changes in Version 1.140 Build 44598
- Improved client support for both DirectX 10 and 11
Zynga have been central to Facebook's plan to take over the world by getting people obsessed about their great casual games. But now, Zynga has new plans. Zynga are planning a new gaming portal dubbed "Zynga Direct" which will host the usual Zynga games without having to go to Facebook. Even through this mammoth effort, the games will still use Facebook Connect for the multiplayer type games, allowing you to play on either Direct or Facebook without issues.
At the same time, Zynga has announced the casual medieval-themed MMO called CastleVille. They've also announced Zynga Bingo (what!), Dream Zoo, Hidden Chronicles and Mafia Wars II. Zynga just won't stop the casual gaming thing, but why would they? They produce some great games, have hundreds of millions of gamers and now are looking to branch out. Gaming is a'changin' people, we have to get used to it.
I for one, will definitely check out CastleVille, but I'll have to stop myself from being addicted to it like CityVille. Those games suck too much of my spare time away and with a near 7-month old bub at home, I can't do it anymore!