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Thursday, Sep 27, 2012

  

Mists of Pandaria Sales Disappointing?

VentureBeat has estimated sales figures for the just-released Mists of Pandaria expansion for World of Warcraft by way of investment bank Lazard Capital Markets, where they estimate the MMORPG expansion has sold between 600,000 and 700,000 copies at retail since launching this week. This estimate does not include digital sales, but they add that "Lazard analysts believe Pandaria's digital sales won't make up for its poor retail performance." Word is: "Historically, each new World of Warcraft expansion has outsold its predecessors, Lazard said, but sales of Pandaria are down 60 percent from the previous expansion pack, Cataclysm, which has sold 3.3 million units since its launch in December 2010."

Brothers - A Tale of Two Sons Announced

505 Games and Starbreeze Studios announce Brothers - A Tale of Two Sons, a game previously known as P13, saying this "emotionally-charged" game is coming to PCs via Steam and to consoles in the spring of next year. The game's official website is online with this trailer showing off the game's Unreal engine graphics, which are also on display in these screenshots. Here's word on the game:

A man, clinging to life. His two sons, desperate to cure their ailing father, are left with but one option. They must set out upon a journey to find and bring back the "Water of Life” as they come to rely on one another to survive. One must be strong where the other is weak, brave where the other is fearful, they must be... Brothers.

505 Games in partnership with Starbreeze Studios and filmmaker Josef Fares will release Brothers - A Tale of Two Sons - previously known as P13 - for Xbox LIVE® Arcade for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, PlayStation®Network for the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and for Steam in spring 2013.

Continue here to read the full story.

Might & Magic Heroes VI: Danse Macabre Released

The Might & Magic Heroes VI Website announces the Danse Macabre adventure pack for the strategy sequel is now available in The Official Ubisoft Online Store, as is the Might & Magic Heroes VI Gold Edition which bundles the game and Danse Macabre along with the previously released Pirates of the Savage Sea adventure pack.Here's the Danse Macabre feature list:

  • Over 10-hours of intense and epic adventure: Experience an original and exclusive, breathtaking story starring the fan-favorite “Legacy” Hero and discover new secrets of Ashan.
  • New artifacts and bonuses: Unlock a new spectacular Dynasty weapon, an Artifact Set, a unique Building, a Hero, and for the first time in the saga, a pet!
  • Rediscover the richness of the M&M Universe: a unique scenario map, based on “Xeen”, a famous legacy world of the Might & Magic Universe.
  • Experience the unique mix of Turn-Based Strategy & RPG: Explore extra-large adventure maps, collect tons of resources and build extraordinary cities. Perfect your tactics to level-up your heroes, recruit troops & ready them for combat on exclusive battle maps.

Swords and Sorcery - Underworld GOLD & Demo Released

The Older Bytes Website now offers online sales of Swords and Sorcery - Underworld GOLD along with a playable demo of this game that harkens back to the classic dungeon crawlers of a bygone era of gaming. Word is: "The Gold Edition features extensive additions of new content, enhanced graphics and interface and new combat rules and tactical options that heighten the challenge, complexity and unpredictability of the game’s action compared to earlier editions." This trailer shows off the game, and the demo is mirrored on Gamer's Hell.

GRID 2 Gameplay Trailers

Two new trailers for GRID 2 offer the first looks at gameplay from Codemasters' upcoming racing sequel, showing racing on the streets of Chicago and along the California coast taken from an alpha version of the game. Word is: "The Chicago video features a Street Racing stage where muscle cars, including the Camaro SS, Z06 Corvette and Boss Mustang, charge through skyscraper-lined streets and chase through tunnels. The California Coast video follows a head-to-head, point-to-point duel between a contemporary Boss Mustang and a classic Mustang Mach 1 on a tight and twisting sprint for the line." Continue here to read the full story.

A Game of Dwarves Website; Contest

A new A Game of Dwarves Website is online as home to Zeal Game Studios' upcoming vertically challenged management game. This includes a call for submissions for dwarf names to be included in the game when it's released next month:

Dwarves need fine, strong names and now players have the chance to have their own made-up name included in A Game of Dwarves. Starting today, dwarf fans out there can submit their entry by visiting the official Facebook page for A Game of Dwarves. Thereafter, Paradox Interactive and Zeal Games will randomly select five names to be included the final version of the game.

To participate in the competition to name your own dwarf, please visit: http://goo.gl/vOyPL

Gatherings & Competitions

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Safety Dance

Evening Legal Briefs

Into the Black

I Am Weapon and Demo Released

The Sigma Team Website now offers online sales of I Am Weapon along with a playable demo of this action/tower defense hybrid. The demo is mirrored on AtomicGamer and Gamer's Hell, and here's word:

The world of nightmares is mysterious and amazing, it scares and fascinates at the same time. The laws of real world are not valid in here. Here you are absolutely alone and it seems there are too many secrets to reveal... And this dreadful feeling as if somebody is constantly watching you.

What if you become filled with the nightmares and the only chance to save yourself are the memories - the only thing that connects you with the real world. The fragments from your real life are in danger – so is your future! Protect the memories by any means, otherwise it's all over.

I am weapon - is a game, comprising all the best from Action and Tower Defense genres - destroy the monsters, improve the skills, buy new weapons and build up defense constructions, that will help you to get out of the dream world and understand the reasons of what has happened.

You got used to see them in a circus and laugh at them. So now it all changed the other way round. Don't let them laugh at you! Be the weapon to win the fight with your nightmares in totally absurd dream!

Ships Ahoy - Jagged Alliance: Crossfire

Kalypso Media announces that Jagged Alliance: Crossfire is now available from North American retailers, offering a boxed version of the standalone expansion to Jagged Alliance: Back in Action, their remake of the tactical RPG Jagged Alliance 2. Word is: "The game takes players to the mountainous country of Khanpaa, where they must battle another group of mercenaries who have enslaved the populace for reasons unknown. Players will equip, train and deploy teams of mercs and plan out battles in real-time or in the "plan 'n go" mode." Here's a feature list:

  • Tactical combat at its finest, using the enhanced “Plan ‘n’ Go” system of plotting your team’s moves strategically, then executing them in nail-biting real time
  • 10 new mercenaries round out your team, offering a roster of more than 50 unique combatants with unique skills, weaknesses and quirky personalities
  • 10 new maps, set in the unforgiving, frozen mountainous countryside will challenge your planning skills – rocky mountain terrain, narrow valleys and icy cliffs will provide new cover opportunities, chokepoints and offer optimum ambush points
  • 15+ hours of gameplay across a brand new campaign with a broad variety of missions
  • New weapons, enemies and equipment – supplies are scarce, and your mercenaries will have to make the most of outdated weapons, limited supplies and equipment
  • Enjoy the Jagged Alliance series as never before with vastly improved graphics, enhanced AI behavior, a polished interface and numerous performance and gameplay updates

Notch Knocks Win8: Minecraft Certification in Doubt

A tweet by Minecraft creator Markus 'Notch' Persson relates an exchange with Microsoft about Windows 8 and the indie sandbox game: "Got an email from microsoft, wanting to help 'certify' minecraft for win 8. I told them to stop trying to ruin the pc as an open platform." He follows this expressing his distaste for the process and the new OS: "I'd rather have minecraft not run on win 8 at all than to play along. Maybe we can convince a few people not to switch to win 8 that way.." Thanks Computer and Video Games.

Korean Valve Bid?

"Will Asian online game publishers Nexon and NCsoft buy blockbuster publisher Valve?" asks VentureBeat in an article based on a rumor in a "major" Korean publication. Joongang News reports Nexon and Valve met in Hawaii yesterday to discuss a possible merger. Nexon was also involved in acquisition rumors earlier this year when reports emerged it was bidding on EA. Valve's Gabe Newell has expressed no interest in selling the company when previous such rumors have emerged, but neither company has commented on this report yet.

Carmageddon Max Pack on GOG.com

GOG.com now offers a Carmageddon Max Pack, a DRM-free bundle of Carmageddon and its Splat Pack expansion as they anticipate Stainless Games' release of Carmageddon: Reincarnation. This kicks off a weekend promotion where they are offering sales on games with upcoming sequels:

GOG.com have also prepared a fantastic promo that will start this Friday and last throughout the weekend. All gamers who are biting their nails in anticipation for some of the most fascinating releases of 2013, including the new Tomb Raider, Hitman: Absolution, and possibly THI4F, can buy the originals that made all the series so successful. The first three games featuring Lara Croft are available in a nice Tomb Raider 1+2+3 DRM-free package for only $3.99. The first Hitman game, Codename 47 can be sniped down for $2.39, and Hitman 2: Silent Assassin for $3.99. All three Thief games, Thief Gold, Thief 2: The Metal Age, and Thief 3: Deadly Shadows are available for $3.99 each. Other notable titles form the SquareEnix promo include Deus Ex series, Anachronox, and Legacy of Kain series-all 60% off, this weekend only on GOG.com. Visit GOG.com tomorrow for the Square Enix promo.

UFO Online Stress Test Tomorrow

The creators of UFO Online - Fight for Earth are planning a closed beta stress-test for this browser-based tactical MMOG beginning tomorrow, offering prizes to participants, including a gaming PC and other hardware from Alienware. Those interested should keep an eye on this thread for further details, and take note of the following "universal key" to gain access: "7YWZ4EV5PFDA942V3MJ9".

World of Warcraft Free Character Transfers

The World of Warcraft Website announces Blizzard is now offering free character transfers in their MMORPG:

We’re providing free transfers off of realms that are currently seeing high queue times. If you’re on one of the below realms and would like to avoid waiting in queues to play, you can take advantage of these free transfers. We’ve done our best to match realm types and time zones for a smooth transfer process.

The current transfers will go until approximately 9:00 a.m. PDT, October 4. Please be aware that, due to the unpredictable nature of free transfers, we may close down any transfers at any time and without warning if the destination realm becomes full. If you plan to move with friends or your guild, we suggest that you coordinate the effort to reduce the chance of any stragglers being left behind.

Although free Guild Master Realm Transfers are not possible at this time, these free character transfers will allow you to retain your guild membership and reputation, provided the guild master completes a Guild Master Realm Transfer to the destination realm first, and does not change factions.

Linux Steam External Beta Plans

The Valve Linux Blog announces they will begin internally testing Steam for Linux next week, and will begin admitting external testers next month, saying: "Things have been going well. We will be having an internal beta starting next week, and a private external beta for 1,000 users sometime in October." Here's word on where they are with this:

The private external beta will include:

  • Steam
  • One Valve game
  • Support for Ubuntu 12.04 and above

It will not yet include:

  • Big Picture mode
  • Additional Valve games

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

There's good news for tackle football fans, as the NFL and the referees' union have reached a tentative deal, and tonight's game will be officiated by professionals, rather than the well-meaning but frightfully incompetent replacement refs. This might have impacted last week's outcomes if it had happened in time for those games, but either way, the number of crazy upsets make this an interesting season to have challenged folks to pick games. This is evidenced by Creston and Jivaro tying for best record for the week at 8-8 (imagine if we were using the point spread!), while Mag and I were 7-9, and Cutter followed two weeks of dominance with a disastrous 4-12. Here are my pre-caffeinated picks for this week: Ravens, Falcons, Patriots, Lions, Texans, Chiefs, 49ers, Seahawks, Cardinals, Broncos, Bengals, Packers, Bucs, Giants, Cowboys.

Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Portal 2D.
Stories: Is the Texas Twang Dyin', Y'all? Other Accents Blend In.
Man Finds Lost Finger in Trout.
Incredible 1,000 year old Buddhist statue made from a METEORITE.
Science: Hyperloop: Billionaire Tech Mogul's New Idea Could Revolutionize Travel Forever.
Cyborg Roaches Could Be Future Emergency Responders.
Air Force sets first post in ambitious Space Fence project.
Media: Realistic Fighting Game. NSFW.
Honest Trailers - The Avengers. Thanks JDreyer.
There is no Escaping... Gangnam Style Dance: SKYRIM.
Jimmy Fallon: History Of TV Theme Songs.
Follow-up: Viral photo helps 19-year-old arthritic dog recover.
Britishisms and the Britishisation of American English. Thanks brother19.



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