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Tuesday, Jan 29, 2013

  

Prince of Persia "Paused"

The Prince of Persia franchise is currently "paused," is Ubisoft Montreal CEO Yannis Mallat's answer to IGN when asked about the status of the series. "Brand management is a tricky thing," Mallat told IGN. "It needs people's attention a lot. I think it is fair to say that, right now, Prince of Persia is being paused. But we said the same thing for some other brands that suddenly popped up because a team is willing to do it." His answers seem to indicate nothing is coming of the screenshot uncovered last summer, but his comments indicate the series is not dead, just resting.

Ships Ahoy - Dungeonland

Paradox Interactive announces Dungeonland has opened its virtual doors thanks to digital distribution, offering the chance to play the Windows edition of the strategy game. Here's the release trailer, and here's word:

NEW YORK —January 29, 2013 — Paradox Interactive, a publisher of games and consumer of funnel cake, and Critical Studio, the lamented minions of Dungeon Maestro, today announced that Dungeonland has opened its doors to easily lured heroes everywhere. Available today for PC via digital distributors worldwide, Dungeonland can be purchased, downloaded, played, and quickly lost over and over again by soft, fleshy adventurers to their heart’s content. Dungeonland costs merely $9.99 plus the lives of your co-op partners.

“I can’t tell you how pleased I am to finally welcome the world to Dungeonland,” said the Dungeon Maestro, Director of Scheming at Paradox Interactive. “This represents a bold step forward not just for my glorious plans, but for the evil industry as a whole. Opening day is just the beginning, as well; today PC heroes can ‘enjoy’ their visits, but soon I’ll be able to lure MacOS heroes to my park as well! Better still, there’s a whole new section we’re going to open shortly, called Infinite Dungeon! We tell the heroes it’s the best challenge we have, where the fights just get harder and harder until they die – and the idiots line right up to try it!

Continue here to read the full story.

AMD Catalyst Beta

AMD Support now offers a new Catalyst 13.2 Beta Driver for Windows 8/7/Vista. This offers several performance improvements, including the new Crysis 3 beta, and word is: "Future updates will be made to AMD Catalyst 13.2 Beta to further improve performance in Crysis 3 for both single GPU and CrossFire configurations"

Dead Space 3 Microtransactions & Game Modes Detailed

Destructoid has details from a new update on the PlayStation Store that reveals mictrotransaction names and prices for Dead Space 3, showing packs that range from $0.99 to $4.99 (and a $9.99 online pass to screw up used console game sales). Also, a new Dead Space 3 Dev Blog features an outline from executive producer Steve Papoutsis on various details about the imminent third installment in the shooter series, including game modes (thanks HARDOCP). Here's a bit:

What else can you choose to do? How about play DS3 in 4 unlockable game modes! Each mode is on-disc, and becomes available when you beat the game once. There’s New Game+, which lets you start a new game with all your upgrades and arsenal intact. There’s Classic Mode, which is for the DS1 veterans out there. It’s single-player only, uses “classic” aiming, and there’s no crafting – all weapons have to be built from blueprints, a la the original game. Another mode is Pure Survival Mode. If you like survival horror and resource management, this is the mode for you. Enemies ONLY drop resources, and there’s no ammo, health, or weapon parts to be found. You’ll have to choose what to craft every time you see a bench. Upgrade? Med Pack? Plasma Core? Think fast – there’s a Waster right around the corner! Finally, we have the aptly-named Hardcore Mode. Choose this mode, and you only get one life to live for the entire campaign. Make sure to wear a clean pair of boxers when you play…

Marvel Heroes Founder's Program; Diary

A new video developer diary is now available on MarvelHeroes.com, the official website of Marvel Heroes, the action/MMORPG coming this spring from Gazillion Entertainment. The clip shows what goes into the creation of a hero for the game, sharing thoughts on the topic from Gazillion staff including Ultimate Marvel co-creator Brian Michael Bendis and Diablo co-creator David Brevik. Also, the Marvel Heroes Founders Program is underway, offering the chance to spend anywhere from $19.99 to a Gazillion dollars (actually $199.99) on your choice of packages of perks and unlocks in the free-to-play game. Continue here to read the full story.

Omerta - City of Gangsters Trailer

This trailer highlights the character creation process in Omerta - City of Gangsters, Haemimont's upcoming organized crime game. Here's word:

City of Gangsters, your success as a crime lord depends upon your choice of henchmen and the unique skills your “Boss” brings to the table. Today, we're pleased to release a new video that showcases the Boss creation system from Omerta, along with featuring an assortment of thugs and thieves that you'll be able to recruit for your burgeoning crime syndicate. Grab the new video and get a first-hand look at Omerta - City of Gangsters, the city-conquest game that will have you taking over a 1920’s Prohibition-era Atlantic City through strategically applied brute force and business sense, while pulling off daring heists and fighting turf wars in tactical turn-based combat.

Continue here to read the full story.

Day One Garry's Incident Kickstarter

Wild Games Studio has launched a Kickstarter for Day One Garry's Incident, the adventure game they previously sought to fund via their own alpha funding program. Here's part of their pitch:

Based in Montreal's growing game community. Wild Game Studios and our game designer Stephane Woods are excited to bring a whole new adventure game to the scene. They are creating a whole new approach to First Person Shooter, RPG and adventure game genre. Day One: Garry's Incident is a mature Adventure FPS Survival Game of a whole new kind. This project will allow us to complete episode one and eventually bring the complete series on game console in a multiplayer co-op format. Between episodes, we take your feedback and develop the elements you want to see in-game, in order to deliver you the ultimate gaming experience.

Hawken PhysX Trailer

The GeForce Website has details on the PhysX-enhanced edition of Hawken, saying this is currently available in the free-to-play mech game to owners of appropriate NVIDIA hardware. They offer this trailer to show off what this looks like. Continue here to read the full story.

Evening Q&As

Evening Patches

On Sale

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  • Risen 2: Dark Waters on Steam. Save 66%.

Evening Previews

Evening Consolidation

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Evening Safety Dance

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Into the Black

Junction Point Studios Closed

Gamasutra has the following brief official confirmation from Disney of the rumor that Epic Mickey developer Junction Point Studios is closing:

It was with much sadness that we informed our teams today of changes to our Games organization, which include the closure of Junction Point Studios. These changes are part of our ongoing effort to address the fast-evolving gaming platforms and marketplace and to align resources against our key priorities. We’re extremely grateful to Warren Spector and the Junction Point team for their creative contributions to Disney with Disney Epic Mickey and Disney Epic Mickey 2.

Crysis 3 Open Beta Begins; Tutorial Video

This trailer is to help players get started playing in the multiplayer beta for Crysis 3, as widespread testing of Crytek's shooter sequel commences today. The clip features producer Mike Reed providing insider insights in two of the game's eight multiplayer modes. This interested in playing the beta can sign up on this page. Thanks Polygon. Continue here to read the full story.

Warface Enters Closed Beta; Trailer

Even as Crysis 3 enters open beta, as noted above, Crytek is also moving ahead with Warface, saying the free-to-play multiplayer shooter is now entering closed beta testing. This trailer shows off the beta, and features lots of in-game combat. If you want to participate, you should register on the official website and show them your war face. Continue here to read the full story.

Further Mass Effect 3 DLC Teasing?

A tweet by Casey Hudson and another by Mike Gamble each offer new Mass Effect 3 screenshots, presumably from the DLC presumed to be in the works for BioWare's action/RPG sequel. Hudson's shot shows the Citadel's Silver Coast casino and says "Looks like a nice place for some R&R," while Gamble (shouldn't he have posted th4e casino shot with that name?) offers a shot of a Krogan, and says: "Does not look like a guy you'd want to mess with." Thanks Videogamer.

Something From Rebellion Next Month

This trailer from Rebellion teases the next project from the Sniper Elite developer, offering some mysterious footage, linking to email signups on this website, and saying we will learn more next month. Rock, Paper, Shotgun tries to divine what this means, but we should know soon enough, as the caption says we will learn more on Valentine's Day:

One man is utterly alone amidst the chaos of war. But there are worse things to fear than bombs and bullets here...

Go to http://goo.gl/4Ekn0 for Priority ONE communiques.

Debuting 14th February 2013, PC fans will soon get the chance to discover for themselves just what is in store for those brave enough to venture into the 'Totraum'.

Heil Gotterdammerung!

Ships Ahoy - Rush Bros.

Xyla Entertainment announces that Rush Bros. is now available via digital distribution, offering a cross-platform rhythm platformer where you can use your own music (even if it's not by Rush). The DRM-free Windows and OS X editions can be purchased from the sites listed on this page, and they say an Android version is currently in the works. Here's a blurb on the game: "In Rush Bros. you will take control of one of two DJs to race across a stylised world of treacherous traps and perfectly placed platforms while using your environment to try to stop the other DJ from reaching the finish before you do. You will be able to see your opponent at all times, so make sure to keep an eye on your foe as they will try to obstruct your progress as well."

Full Mojo Rampage Announced

This website heralds development of Full Mojo Rampage, described as "A rogue-like game in a Voodoo world" by indie developer Over the Top Games (NyxQuest). The game is coming to Windows PCs, with the possibility of console ports down road, and they expect to offer open beta access to those who buy the game when it is offered for preorders, which is currently expected to be in early April. Here's word:

Welcome to the world of Full Mojo Rampage where you get to control a Voodoo keeper throughout his adventures. As the player you’ll need to guide him safely through each level whilst hunting for voodoo dolls and mojos. These mojos can be found throughout the game in the form of amulets and trinkets that bring him strength and luck. They also unleash an array of other powers that you can craft to your own advantage in order to truly master the terrible powers of Voodoo.

Sins of a Dark Age Trailer

This trailer introduces Sins of a Dark Empire, the upcoming strategy/RPG MOBA dealie from Sins of a Solar Age developer Ironclad games. Accompanied by new screenshots and artwork, the clip features gameplay footage and developer commentary to set the stage for the game, describes plans for post-release content including new heroes and quests to keep things fresh for players, and discusses the interplay of strategies they are seeking to create. Continue here to read the full story.

Lace Mamba Global/CBE/J.U.L.I.A. Follow-up

Lace Mamba Global offers a response to the recent report that CBE software has dropped them as publisher for J.U.L.I.A. due to non payment. They claim a misunderstanding due to an inability to contact anyone at the developer, and say they have been working to put this horse back in the barn:

It has come to our attention that after a Press Release on 24/1/13 by CBE Software reports have been published and circulated surrounding the non-payment of the developer CBE Software by Lace Mamba Global. This press release contained a number of inaccuracies and false statements that we had only become aware of via the release of this statement. Lace Mamba Global would like to state that they have tried to contact CBE Software to resolve this issue amicably but have yet been successful in raising a response. Subsequently this press release has been the basis for some speculation and the publishing of several news articles, again containing inaccurate information. Lace Mamba Global would like to state that they were not given any opportunity to respond to any of these allegations prior to publication and has since contacted all individual parties involved to have these articles removed and to discuss the situation further.

Morning Patches

  • Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear version 1.18 on Matrix Games.

Morning Q&As

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

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Out of the Blue

I needed to bathe the doggies yesterday and determined that the Gunnar-man needed a haircut, so I busted out the scissors. I had let his coat get to a wonderfully shaggy state (to the extent that you probably wouldn't guess he is a poodle), but it was getting too long to be manageable. The thing is, I'm not very subtle about these things, so he's gone from pretty long hair to pretty short hair, all perfectly timed to go outside in the bitter cold. Luckily, he runs so hot he doesn't seem to care, and he seems to like it better this way, so I may need to just keep him more trimmed all the time, poodle look and all.

Shaggy Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Click the Bolt.
Links: What Documents Should I Shred and What Should I Keep?
Stories: For NASA, a Somber Week of Space Disaster Anniversaries.
Science: Uranus takes a pounding more frequently than thought. Thanks Cutter.
Identity of Famous 19th-Century Brain Discovered.
Media: Downton Abbey the Game.
Minecraft Creepers.
How DARE You Cut Me Off Motherf...... oh, go on then.
Quick Thinking Russian Coach Gets The Assist.
Auction: Humble nickel from 1913 likely to fetch millions.
The Funnies: An Epic Journey Cartoon - Savage Chickens.
Savage Chickens.

Monday, Jan 28, 2013

Crytek Opens Austin Studio With Vigil Staff

Crytek GmbH announces the opening of a new studio in Austin, Texas, their ninth studio worldwide and their first in the U.S. Word is this will be home to David Adams and 35 of the former staff at Vigil Games, the Darksiders developer not picked up in the THQ bankruptcy sale. Here's the deal:

Crytek GmbH today unveiled their ninth worldwide studio, situated in Austin, Texas, USA. Crytek USA Corp. is the company’s first US-based studio and is ideally placed to embrace exciting new game, engine and business development opportunities in North America and beyond.

“Crytek has always enjoyed a special relationship with gamers and business partners in North America, so establishing a permanent presence in the US was a natural step,” said Crytek CEO, Cevat Yerli. “We are extremely excited about the work that we will be undertaking from our strategic new location in Austin, with David Adams and his team of 35 experienced developers. We believe our CryENGINE® technology will enable the team we assemble to create unparalleled new gaming experiences.”

David Adams, the newly appointed CEO of Crytek USA Corp., added: “I’m thrilled to be a part of the newest Crytek studio, which will boast some of the brightest development talent in the industry. The studio’s launch represents Crytek’s commitment to delivering diverse and high quality content to players everywhere.”

Crytek USA Corp. follows on from the recently-opened Crytek Istanbul as the company’s newest studio, meaning the ambitious developer and publisher now has an established presence in Europe, Asia and North America.

Junction Point Closure Rumor

Kotaku notes rumors about issues at Junction Point Studios, the Disney-owned developer of Epic Mickey and Epic Mickey 2. They say "multiple sources" have confirmed that Junction Point's employees have been on paid leave for over a month, and "two sources familiar with the company" tell them employees are expecting layoff news tomorrow morning. They also say that Chris Roberts tweeted the studio would be shut down, but that tweet has been deleted from the Roberts Space Industries feed, and a follow-up tweet says: "Our posting about Junction Point was based on a story by http://mynintendonews.com this AM. CIG has no inside info on their status." Just to add confusion, My Nintendo News does have a story on this: Epic Mickey Studio Junction Point Apparently Closing Down. They say the studio will close in seven days, and list their source for this as, wait for it, that deleted RSI tweet that RSI says was based on the story that links to the deleted tweet (stop me, I'm in a loop!). So both of those "sources" are now simply pointing at each other, but Kotaku has their sources, and industry gossip George Broussard tweets that "The Junction Point rumors have been circulating a while."

X3: Reunion Linux Beta

Steam News announces a public beta for the Linux edition of X3: Reunion with this short and sweet proclamation:

The Linux version of X3: Reunion has just entered public beta testing and is available to anyone owning the game. For technical support and news please visit: http://forum.egosoft.com/viewtopic.php?t=332472

Neverwinter Founder's Pack Details

There are details on Founder's Packs that will offer guaranteed access to the three planned beta testing weekends for Neverwinter, the upcoming Dungeons & Dragons MMOG from Perfect World Entertainment. The game will be free to play, but if you want to ensure access to the prerelease version, you can pay for the privilege, from $49.00 all the way up to a whopping $199.00. Word is these will go up for sale tomorrow on this page. For those looking for inspiration from the past for this, GOG.com has coincidentally just added Neverwinter Nights 2: Complete.

Cities in Motion 2 Trailer

This trailer offers the first look at Cities in Motion 2 in motion, as it includes a glimpse of the upcoming mass transportation simulation. Here's word on the game that accompanies the clip: "Cities in Motion 2 gives players full control of their own transit empire as they utilize a wide variety of transportation vehicles to create the most effective transit system possible. Offering a bus load of new features, including day and night cycles and multiplayer modes, Cities in Motion 2 also introduces dynamic cities—as transit is built, urban sprawl will expand or depreciate based on the affordability of transit and the needs of each unique city’s inhabitants. From the scheduling of timetables to the adjustment of fares, transportation enthusiasts will be able to tweak a wide variety of options to provide for the demands of their population. Just remember: if transit is running late, you have no one to blame but yourself." Continue here to read the full story.

Evening Q&As

On Sale

  • The Binding of Isaac on Steam. Save 75%.

Evening Patches

Evening Consolidation

Evening Mobilization

etc., etc.

Into the Black

Link of the Day: Lance Armstrong Remix - I'm A Creep. NSFW. Thanks nin.

NVIDIA Beta Drivers for Crysis 3 Beta

NVIDIA now offers new version 313.95 beta GeForce drivers for NVIDIA graphics cards. The drivers are available for Windows Vista/7/8 32-bit, for Windows Vista/7/8 64-bit, for Windows XP 32-bit, and for Windows XP 64-bit. These are the recommended GeForce drivers for the Crysis 3 open beta that's expected tomorrow, and they are also said to offer performance improvements over the WHQL-certified version 310.90 GeForce drivers. Thanks Charles.

U.K. Sales Charts

The new GfK Chart-Track lists the 20 bestselling full-priced PC entertainment titles in the U.K. for the week ending January 26th. Football Manager 2013 retains its toehold on the top spot, and DmC: Devil May Cry enters the chart at number nine. The highest new entry on the all-platforms chart is at #36, but there's a change at the top, as Call of Duty: Black Ops II knocks DmC out of the number one spot.

Half-Life OS X and Linux Betas Released

A note from last week on penguin-centric Phoronix reveals that Valve has made a low-key release of a Linux edition of the original Half-Life, saying this is still considered a beta, which may explain why the Steam page for the classic first-person shooter still only shows Windows support. Cult of Mac adds that the game has likewise received an OS X edition, which is also not listed, but available in the library of those who own the game. Thanks Polygon.

Frostbite OS X Port Planned

DICE is advertising for a software engineer to help port their Frostbite engine to Mac OS X. Here's word on plans for a different thinking version of the game engine: "Frostbite is looking for developers who want to join us in taking our engine to the next level. You will be part of a team focusing on bringing Frostbite to Mac and work closely with game team customers and the Frostbite team to deliver an engine as great on OS X as it is on Windows and traditional console platforms." Thanks Videogamer.

Napoleon: Total War Invading Macs

Feral Interactive announces plans to release a Mac OS X edition of Napoleon: Total War, saying the port of Creative Assembly's strategy game is expected this spring. Here's word on what will be included in this OS X Gold Edition of the game:

The Mac version of Napoleon: Total War - Gold Edition comprises the base game and all the game updates, improvements and downloadable content, including The Peninsula Campaign, which sees Napoleon battle for control of the Iberian Peninsula against the allied forces of Spain, the United Kingdom and Portugal. It also includes three unit packs, the Imperial Eagle Pack, the Coalition Battle Pack and the Heroes of the Napoleonic Wars Pack.

Dead Space 3 Launch Trailer

The launch trailer (commercial?) from Dead Space 3 offers some gameplay footage from the upcoming horror-themed shooter sequel, along with a Phil Collins remix for extra terror. No Xenomorph's were harmed in the making of this video. Thanks Polygon. Continue here to read the full story.

Call of Duty: Black Ops II - Revolution Trailer

A new trailer from Call of Duty: Black Ops II - Revolution shows off the DLC coming tomorrow to the Xbox 360 edition of the military shooter sequel, and to other editions in the future. The clip shows off some combat in a skate park, but luckily no kids seem to be around. This is part of a write up about the DLC on One Of Swords. Thanks VG247. Continue here to read the full story.

GRiD 2 Trailer and Screenshots

A new trailer uses live-action and gameplay footage to show off more of GRiD 2, Codemasters' upcoming racing sequel. This is accompanied by some new screenshots and the following explanation: "The video, part one of a series of three, follows the fortunes of Chris Harris, motoring journalist and regular contributor to YouTube’s DRIVE channel, who has joined together with Codemasters to provide insight into car handling and vehicle selection for the game. In the video, Chris throws his McLaren around the famous circuit in pursuit of McLaren test driver Mat Jackson and uses in-game expertise from GRID 2 and Codemasters staff to gain the advantage. The video shows how Brands Hatch is created in-game and features stunning real life footage of the stunning McLarens power-sliding around some of the most iconic corners in racing, and is now playing at www.youtube.com/gridgame." Continue here to read the full story.

BioShock Infinite Mocumentary

This new "Truth from Legend" trailer is a stylized pseudo-documentary detailing the fictional history leading to the foundation a succession of the floating city of Columbia, the setting for BioShock Infinite, Irrational Games' upcoming first-person shooter sequel. Continue here to read the full story.

Morning Q&As

Gatherings & Competitions

Morning Previews

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

etc.

Out of the Blue

I've talked in the past about getting a pressure cooker to be able to can food, but that semi-idle thought is boiling over at the moment, so to speak, as we are a little inundated with stuff that will spoil before long. In a bit of uncoordinated planning, I made three quarts of chili over the weekend, and MrsBlue roasted a half-dozen chicken breasts last night (so four are leftover). This all goes in the fridge along with a quart of my nascent attempt at a Bolognese ragù, a quart of marinara sauce made by MrsBlue, and one or two other things I can't recall off the top of my head. So the pressure is on for us to finish this off before it goes bad, and certainly before either of us cooks anything else. Oh well, the food is all excellent, so we'll just have to "suffer."

R.I.P.: Heavy Rain composer Normand Corbeil dies of cancer aged 56.

Canned Links: Thanks Ant and Acleacius.
Play: Folds.
Links: Updated Spoiler Alert: Super Bowl XLVII commercial lineup for next Sunday.
Stories: NASA to help build telescope that will study Universe’s dark past.
2 rescued after small plane crash on Hudson River.
Science: Berners-Lee calls for computer science education at a younger age.
Images: Amazing Movie Posters From Mondo's New Gallery Show. Thanks nin.
Friendship means sometimes letting your best friend be Han Solo.
Media: Drunk Golf Trick Shot. Thanks reddit. Cinderella kid...
Dog - Not without my stick.
"Who's On First?" - The Sequel.



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