Sony have previously said their next-generation portable gaming machine, PlayStation Vita, will launch globally by the end of the year and have said more specifically, that'll it'll be in the fall. Blockbuster have jumped the gun, with IGN nabbing their flier which suggests the PS Vita will hit UK retail shelves on Friday, October 28, 2011. The advertisement suggests that both Vita models will arrive in Europe after two months. Will we see a US or Japan release at the same time? We don't know.
As we can see from the above image (if true), the Vita will be £$229.99 for the Wi-Fi only model, with the 3G & Wi-Fi Vita at £279.99. Pricing doesn't seem too bad considering Sony has promised a PlayStation 3-level experience, as the Vita sports a quad-core ARM Cortex A9 processor with a multi-core PowerVT SGX543MP4 graphics chip that is four times as fast as the PSP. The Vita will come with a 5-inch OLED screen with a resolution of 950x544, two micro-analog sticks to simulate the Dual Shock experience, front and rear-facing cameras, as well as a two-finger multitouch pad on the back of the Vita unit.
Sony is hoping that the front and rear touch screens will offer new three dimension-like motion gameplay experiences never before seem on any device through "touch, grab, trace, push and pull" finger motions. A Sixaxis equivalent with a gyroscope and accelerometer is also available to let players control games by moving and tilting the Vita itself.
Blizzard have released some drips of information for their upcoming keyboard/mouse-thrashing RPG, Diablo 3. First off, Diablo 3 will be online-only, Blizzard believe that a high number of users have access to permanent internet connections anyway, and even though piracy was a concern it was not "a deciding factor" in making the decision. Blizzard instead claim that internet connectivity will be necessary due to a cache of Battle.net features that complement the game.
Things like persistent character saving server-side and the possibility of opting in/out of co-op play, persistent friends list, party system and matchmaking, the game's achievement system, and an auction house system that will allow real world currency to purchase items. Blizzard is not planning on selling any items directly through the auction house, instead, they'll let players list items for which they will charge a fixed fee.
The point of this is, real money auctions will be allowed along with in-game gold and normal item trade. Players will be allowed to rock up at the auction house at any time, with instant transactions of nearly everything, inclusive of characters themselves. Finally, Diablo 3 will not include support for bots or mods which Blizzard say is for a "variety of gameplay and security reasons."
Three years ago, Mirror's Edge arrived and created a new way of seeing the gaming world through parkour. EA have recently announced a sequel was currently being worked on. But according to CVG, the Official PlayStation Magazine now has a scoop that should start creating buzz for the new Mirror's Edge title:
OPM is now reporting on insider whispers which add more credence to the idea of Faith hop, skip and jumping onto Battlefield 3's stunning engine.
"The Frostbite 2 engine will pave the way for Mirror's Edge to make a free-running return," says the mag, much to our delight.
Frostbite 2 is responsible for the gorgeous graphics you've seen in Battlefield 3 demos and alpha videos. I truly look forward to see what DICE can pull off with Frostbite 2 and Mirror's Edge!
In obvious efforts to significantly increase sales counts on its 3DS handheld gaming console before Vita steps on its turf, Nintendo has issued out a press release today that indicates quite the price drop coming to the U.S. and several other regions. They will be shaving $80 off the cost of the 3DS, taking it down from $249 to $169 as of the 12th of August.
If you're one of the 830,000 odd people in the U.S. who've already paid out for the 3DS and feeling somewhat bitter about the above, at least there's a little sweetener in it for you guys too. As long as you've logged into the eShop at least once before the price cut, Nintendo will allow you to grab 10 free NES virtual console games from September 1st, as well as 10 more Game Boy Advance virtual console games, these of which are games Nintendo isn't planning to release to the general public before the end of this year.
Eidos Montreal have unveiled the greatest news I've read in a while, that Deus Ex: Human Revolution has gone gold and will be released on August 23. Yes, it's actually coming out - it's not another delay or problem with the game, it is finished, complete, golden. Here's a quote if you don't believe me:
We couldn't be more excited that Deus Ex: Human Revolution has gone gold and will soon be in the hands of expectant gamers," said Eidos-Montreal's general manager Stephane D'Astous. "As the first release for Eidos-Montreal, it's impossible to express how extremely proud we are of the final product and all of the hard work that went into its creation.
There has been a rumor of the Beta of Diablo 3 for release this summer, reportedly it'll hit in time for Blizzcon 2011 or the upcoming Blizzard press tour. Blizzard has been keeping quiet and not contributing to the community speculation and rumors, until now. Of course a little icon may be jumping the gun a bit, but this is Diablo 3 we're talking about. People have noticed Diablo 3 beta icons on both the EU and US portals of Battle.net.
Should we get excited? I think we should.
This is something I have covered in my editorials, forums and Facebook, that games should be created and developed on the much more powerful PC platform and scaled down to consoles that are no way near as fast. Instead of being developed on ageing hardware and then ported across to PC where they don't scale up in graphics or use DX11 properly, or multi-GPU setups properly, etc.
DICE have come out and said that the biggest difference between the PC and console versions are shown in the multiplayer side of things, down from 64 players on PC to just 24 on consoles. DICE studio head, Patrick Bach says:
The biggest difference between the PC and console version of Battlefield 3 is that we have 64 players on PC and 24 players maximum on console. The rest is more or less the same: we use the same engine, the same technology, the same animation system, the same lighting system. Our aim is to give the player the exact same experience and not try to dumb down the console version. If you want the same quality of game, I would say it's really, really hard. We tried to get more players in [to the console version] but then you need to scale down all the graphics, scale down all the destructibility, and sometimes you need to scale down all the map sizes. Everything is a compromise on: where do you cut?
Announced on MajorNelson's blog, the new remote for the Xbox 360 will be available in November at a cost of $19.99. Also announced is a Bluetooth-based gaming headset which will set you back $59 and in the below video, Major Nelson himself shows it off. The Headset will also be available in November. The new media remote features a redesigned look and is no longer white, featuring a black design with stylish buttons, it kind of looks like the Boxee Box remote actually.
Futuremark has an awesome deal lined up for its zero gravity FPS game, Shattered Horizon, shaving a massive 75% off the normal cost for the next day, making it just $4.99.
Their generosity comes after NASA wrapped up its 30 year space program last week when the Shuttle landed for the final time.
According to industry analyst firm Cowen & Company, Battlefield 3's pre-order numbers are "roughly comparable" with the pre-order numbers on Call of Duty: Black Ops. The results of these pre-order numbers is that the firm has now decided to increase its first year sales estimate from eight to 11 million.
Black Ops sold around 20 million copies in its first nine months on sale. Battlefield 3 may be keeping up with Black Ops, but can it compete with Modern Warfare 3? From a game point of view, yes. From a sales point of view, I think no. I think the Modern Warfare series has become a shadow of its former self.
The Federal and State Governments have reached an in-principle agreement to provide an R18+ rating for video games. There was a meeting in Adelaide (oh my hometime, yay) and the proposal has been debated by various attorney-generals. The New Sales Wales Attorney-General abstained from the proposal. South Australia had previously said it would scrap its current MA15+ rating, meaning that all violent video games will be restricted to adults.
Federal Justice Minister, Brendan O'Connor welcomed the in-principle agreement by saying it is a:
Big step forward in the long running debate on classification. The introduction of an R18+ classification for computer games will provide better advice to parents and help prevent children and teenagers from accessing unsuitable material. Once introduced, the new classification will also afford adults the opportunity to view material designed for adults. It is a credit to all jurisdictions that the meeting has now been able to achieve agreement over what is a complex matter in classification policy.
LucasArts have just unveiled a custom Star Wars-themed Xbox 360 and Kinect console combo at Comic-Con. LucasArts presented it at a panel presentation at Comic-Con with the custom Xbox 360 design inspired by a brave little droid R2-D2 and it will, get this, play custom sounds! The package also includes goldenrod-friendly C3PO designs for the controllers. The LE Star Wars-themed Xbox 360 will set you back $449.99 and will include a 320GB HDD, pre-orders are available at select retailers.
I'm personally not a fan of Star Wars but this does look absolutely insane! Such great detail.
Some of the lucky SOBs to have access to the Battlefield 3 alpha have been posting videos on YouTube and boy do they look good. Apart from the frame rate issues (I'm guessing it could be the users system) it looks very, very good. Let's hope that there's more realistic destruction in the game and not just the usual require-a-rocket-launcher-to-blow-things-up. I want to see little details like glass, lights, tires, bricks, etc fall apart and have realistic destruction.
I'm enjoying some of those death animations, the body movement looks great, the rockets don't seem to have that "punch" I expected them to... The other videos looks good, there's more on the channel for you to check out if you're keen, I suggest you do so!
If you're one of the many folks that enjoyed the 2007 comic-book tie-in shooer "The Darkness" and are holding out for number 2, some unfortunate news has come to light today that 2K Games has delayed it until next year. Apparently this is due to Digital Extremes being a little behind schedule and need some more breathing space to polish the game off.
So, in scrapping their original intent to have the title ready for release in early October this year, the new launch date for the PC, Xbox 360 and PS3 versions will be February 10th, 2012.
As a brief rundown on it, you take the role of a mobster named Jackie Estacado who wields the power of Darkness; these big ugly tentacles and demonic entities that can be controlled at will. The second game is said to take a few steps away from the look and feel of the first, with the focus being to more closely link it to the comic book series that these games are based on.
Futuremark today announce their next game, Unstoppable Gorg, a thrilling space defence game inspired by vintage sci-fi from the 1940s and 1950s. Futuremark tell you to expect wholesome heroes, rubbery aliens and dodgy special effects as they pay homage to a great era of film. Unstoppable Gorg will be released on PC, Xbox LIVE Arcade and iPad.
In Unstoppable Gorg you defend our solar system from the relentless march of a fearsome alien race by sending satellites into orbit around planets, moons and space stations. Unstoppable Gorg is different to the usual tower defence games where you can move your satellites even after you have placed them allowing for different strategies and play styles. When the Gorg armada attacks you can move your satellites around their orbits to best defend against each individual wave, a convention defying mechanic that brings new vitality and interaction to the great tower defence genre.
Side note: How great is that trailer and music!
A report from a meeting between GameStop and financial research firm Baird is suggesting that (sob) Battlefield 3 will not be making its way to Steam. According to Develop, the key quote from the report that comes directly from the GameStop executives is "the upcoming EA title Battlefield 3 will be sold as a download through GameStop, but not through Steam."
This is on top of the news from a little while ago now that EA published a list of retailers for Battlefield 3 in which Steam was missing. Other digital download sites such as Gamersgate, Direct2Drive and EA's own Origin were on the list. Another GameStop executive also told Develop that Battlefield 3 will be coming to digital retailers other than GameStop. This look as though Steam is just being ignored.
We'll keep this in the rumor bin for now but director of ISV relationships at AMD, Neal Robison says that gamers have a lot to be excited about in regards to the next-generation of Xbox. Claiming that the next-gen Xbox will be capable of graphical detail from the movie Avatar. Robison also mentioned that the AI and physics capabilities of the next-gen hardware will reportedly allow every pedestrian in a game like Grand Theft Auto to have totally individual mentality.
This means that if you were to shoot a gun near someone or run them over, each NPC will react different. Gone will be the days of mob mentality where everyone acted the same, each character is capable of being an individual.
It's a bold statement, that's for sure.
EA and DICE are currently running through alpha/beta testing of their soon-to-be-awesome Battlefield 3. The testing is for the Battlelog service in which a number of third-party testers have been given access to the alpha version of Battlefield 3 for the sole purpose of testing Battlelog. The map in the screenshots is what we saw from E3 which is Operation Metro.
The screenshots don't reveal much apart from we now get a decent look at the HUD as well as the server browser. Enjoy!
Well this came out of nowhere, I was looking through my Twitter feed when Logan Decker, Editor-in-Chef of PC Gamer Magazine tweeted about a new PC-exclusive FPS, Hard Reset. Polish-based developer, Flying Wild Hog, have released a teaser for their upcoming PC-exclusive, Hard Reset. Hard Reset is a cyberpunk, first-person shooter like no other, set for release in September 2011. Not much more is known about it, but it definitely looks cool. Being a PC-exclusive doesn't hurt either. Could this be the next Far Cry? Could Flying Wild Hog be the next Crytek?
We'll have to wait and see, but for now check out the official teaser!
I actually saw this yesterday and thought it was just a trick, but behold; visiting http://www.modernwarfare3.com actually leads you to Battlefield 3's website. The two battling shooters is set to be the biggest in history, and this is the latest warning shot in BF3's favor.
Modernwarfare3.com is a domain one would think Activision would've scooped up, but the redirect to BF3's website just went live yesterday. ModernWarfare3.com was registered by GoDaddy in 2009. Some people have speculated that EA itself is behind this amazing move, but it is more likely that a devoted Battlefield fan (or possible Activision hater) registered the domain before Acitivion thought of it and put this into place just to piss them off.
After numerous rumors and hearsay, EA have announced an agreement to acquire PopCap Games. The transaction is expected to close next month subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. The deal includes EA pay approximately $650 million in cash and $100 million in shares of EA common stock to be issued to certain stockholders of PopCap.
PopCap employees roughly 400 people and makes casual digital games for mobile phones, tablets, PCs and social networking sites. Their games include smash-hit titles such as Plants Vs. Zombies, Bejeweled and Zuma. PopCap Games is a Seattle-based company which has more than 150 million games installed and played worldwide on a range of platforms: the Web, PC, Mac, Nintendo DS, Nintendo DSi, Wii, Xbox, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Zeebo, Cell Phones, PDAs, iPod Classic, iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, and Android.