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It looks like Nintendo has a product in its pipeline that could be really quite interesting, where the Japan Times is reporting Nintendo is interesting in purchasing "free form" LCDs from Sharp.
According to Japan Times' sources, Nintendo would use Sharp's shape-shifting LCDs in a new successor to the Nintendo 3DS, or a sleep mapping device, or something else entirely. Sharp's new display technology rearranges circuitry throughout the display, which allows for screens to form in shapes that completely break the usual square or rectangular shape we've all become accustomed to over the years.
Nintendo will release Yoshi's Wooly World for the Wii U in early 2015, with the Good-Feel Company game developer firm providing assistance. Yoshi's Wooly World presents a unique gaming environment, featuring characters made of yarn, wool and other materials. The game was originally shown off during E3 2014 earlier this year, but Nintendo only confirmed it would be released sometime in 2015.
"We said we wanted to make a Yoshi game, but we asked them to use the yarn and fabric as materials for creating new gameplay mechanics to create a new kind of Yoshi game filled with those kinds of elements," said Takashi Tezuka, Nintendo video game designer, during a Nintendo Direct presentation.
It has been an extremely busy time for console manufacturers and game studios, and Nintendo has enjoyed recent success with the Wii U. The launch of Yoshi's Wooly World in early 2015 could help generate additional sales for the gaming unit.
The reclusive China regime, and its hordes of censors, have kept consoles out of the country for the last 14 years by instituting an all-encompassing ban. This draconian ban was lifted just a few short months ago, and Microsoft capitalized on the opportunity by quickly shipping units into the country. Now, four months later, Sony is following Microsoft's lead. The Sony PlayStation 4 will debut in China on January 11th.
Entering the China market isn't easy. The games must make a run through the censor gauntlet, which routinely denies 'licenses' for many of today's top games. It's safe to say that Grand Theft Auto isn't going to make the cut. Microsoft's console is selling in China with only 10 games that passed muster with the censors, but Microsoft predominantly submitted sports games that faced little chance of being flagged by 'cultural censors'. Sony is being a bit more aggressive by applying for licences for 30 games, and several have already made it through. The Sony PS4 will go on sale for roughly 2,899 yuan ($468 USD), in comparison to the more pricey Xbox One at 3,699 yuan ($568 USD).
The Sony PlayStation 4 game console has continually outsold the rival Microsoft Xbox One since both were launched in late 2013 - and while the race is tightening - Sony believes year two will be a bigger success. Sony has learned it takes a bit of time for each new console platform to mature, which could open the floodgates even further.
"I really believe it's year two when you tend to see those titles come through that start to define the whole generation," said Fergai Gara, Sony UK executive. "The best is yet to come on PS4. We've seen a brilliant start with the mega-franchises, like the FIFAs, Call of Duties, and the Assassin's Creeds, but we've also seen some strong new IPs launch - the likes of Destiny and Watch Dogs. But I think that the ones that are truly to define the generation are probably still to come, to be honest."
Consumers are spending money on gaming hardware and video games, so both Sony and Microsoft should be able to enjoy success in 2015.
Nintendo has endured several years of uncertainty and chaos, but appears to be ready to end 2014 on an extremely high note. Despite losing $193 million in 2013, Nintendo has enjoyed success from Super Smash Bros., Mario Kart 8, and Amiibo, the company will also sell an estimated 3.6 million Wii U console units in 2014. Amiibo sales in the US should top $1 billion, and shows President Satoru Iwata's decision of sticking with game titles for Nintendo devices alone isn't as disastrous as once believed.
"Nintendo has picked up good momentum heading into the Christmas season," said Tomoaki Kawasaki, analyst from Iwai Cosmo Securities, regarding Nintendo's recent success. "This time they have a hit lineup. Amiibo represents a new revenue source, and we are watching it very closely."
It may have taken longer than expected, but the Wii U game catalog continues to strengthen - after poor sales in 2012 and 2013 - as Nintendo caters to a niche gaming demographic when compared to Microsoft and Sony.
The Sony PlayStation 4 has largely dominated the Microsoft Xbox One throughout 2014, but a recent price cut - and unbundling the Xbox One from the Kinect - has helped generate more interest in the Xbox One. The price cut helped spur sales for the Xbox One, with Microsoft trying to build on a strong end of 2014 leading into the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in early 2015.
The Xbox One snatched up 53 percent of console sales on Black Friday, while the PS4 trailed with 31 percent - and both companies likely saw strong sales on Cyber Monday - as sales continue leading up to Christmas.
Microsoft added this tidbit: "Since the new Xbox One offering launched on June 9, we've seen sales of Xbox One more than double in the U.S., compared to sales in May."
The 4th of December marks Sony's 20-year birthday in the technology market. It's hard to believe that the PSone was released that long ago, seeing a decrease in school children's homework activity and birthing absolute classics like Crash Bandicoot.
To celebrate this milestone, instead of moving out of home, Sony have released their very own PSone-themed PlayStation 4 console. This 20th Anniversary edition console will only be available through special means, not your general retail stores. In total there will be 12,300 made worldwide, this is to signify the original amount of PSone products that were built on their first production run. If you're wanting to get your hands-on one of these consoles you're going to have to wait as Sony hasn't seemed to release this information as of yet.
Sony has pushed out another update for its PlayStation 4 console, with the 2.03 patch offering up some "system software stability during use of some features has been improved".
It was only three weeks ago that Sony updated the PS4 to version 2.02, with the previous patch offering pretty much the same thing the new patch is offering, system stability. In late October, Sony offered its major 2.00 update, but that update ushered in a smorgasbord of problems. The company quickly released the early November patch which put it on the path it is now.
Walmart had its busiest Cyber Monday in company history, with the Sony PlayStation 4, Microsoft Xbox One, and Nintendo 3DS helping drive sales. The Xbox 360 bundle that included Call of Duty: Ghosts and Call of Duty: Black Ops II for $250 also saw strong sales figures, Walmart confirmed.
The PS4 500GB console bundle that included Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham and LittleBigPlanet 3, Nintendo 3DS XL New Super Mario Bros 2 Limited Edition, and Xbox One Assassin's Creed Unity Bundle helped lead the way.
"We worked hard to bring amazing deals to our customers on Cyber Monday and they responded by driving our Cyber Monday volume to a new all-time high," noted Fernando Madeira, Walmart.com president and CEO.
Reports have just come to light of an error code reading "160-0103" in-game which has been causing some users' Wii U systems to brick themselves or wipe their data fully off the console.
Gamnesia originally broke this news to the public, stating that the error is only applicable to one of the consoles latest releases and further issues appear when the user tries to enter their settings to figure out the source of the problem:
"It seems that this error only shows up with Super Smash Bros., and all other games and functions work fine until you play Smash Bros. or try to enter the Data Management page on the Wii U. When trying to enter the Data Management page, people have been receiving the error code 160-1710."