Game Developer Conference - WildTangent, Inc., the fastest growing online game property in the world, today announced The WildTangent Orb(TM), the industry's first application to transform the PC into a console for enthusiast gamers. The company also announced that Sierra Online, a division of Vivendi Games, THQ and other leading game publishers will release their AAA titles for the WildTangent Orb when it launches on www.wildtangent.com in April. To support the launch of Orb, Sprint will be the first advertiser to sponsor free premium game play to millions of enthusiast gamers.
The WildTangent Orb will feature the same full-screen user interface and game pad-enabled experience that other leading game consoles offer. Additionally, it will leverage the superior hardware performance and connectivity of the PC, the world's most popular and pervasive online gaming platform.
"The WildTangent Orb turns any modern PC into a full-featured game console more powerful than any next generation game console including the Microsoft XBOX 360, Sony PS3 or Nintendo Wii," said Alex St. John, CEO of WildTangent. "Now enthusiast gamers can download and play popular console games they love on the most ubiquitous gaming device available today: the PC."
St. John today encouraged the nearly 20,000 attendees at the annual Game Developer Conference in San Francisco to follow the lead of THQ and Sierra Online into online game distribution of their AAA console titles.
"Enthusiast gamers are spending a tremendous amount of time playing games on their PCs," said Michael Pachter, managing director of research at Wedbush Morgan Securities. "While traditional consoles will continue to have their place for the foreseeable future, the market has become highly fragmented and modern PCs have the media capabilities and market share to represent the largest contiguous enthusiast gaming audience console publishers can reach."
Starting in April, 12 million WildTangent gamers will be offered a free upgrade to the WildTangent Orb game console, when it will be released publicly for the first time on www.wildtangent.com. In the second half of 2008, WildTangent Orb will come pre-installed on every major-brand consumer PC in the U.S., including HP, Gateway and Toshiba.
"Sierra Online is continuously looking for opportunities to offer its popular and award-winning titles to game enthusiasts in the format they prefer to play them," said Ed Zobrist, president of Sierra Online. "Those who enjoyed playing our AAA tiles on console, as well as PC gamers will be eager to get their hands on some of our most desirable console titles on the PC."
The WildTangent Orb will launch with popular AAA titles from Sierra Online including 3D Ultra(TM) Mini Golf, Assault Heroes(TM), Battlestar Gallactica(TM) and Switchball(TM) as well as popular PC titles from Sierra Entertainment. THQ titles will include Juiced(TM) 2 Hot Import Nights(TM), Company of Heroes®, Company of Heroes® Opposing Fronts(TM), Red Faction®, Red Faction® II, Full Spectrum Warrior®, MX vs. ATV Unleashed(TM), Full Spectrum Warrior Ten Hammers®, Titan Quest(TM), Warhammer® 40,000 Dawn of War Gold and Warhammer® 40,000 Dawn of War Dark Crusade(TM). Also included in Orb will be more than 55 enthusiast titles from THQs Valusoft.
"THQ is committed to making its games available to gamers in the most convenient ways possible including online distribution," said Adrienne Lauer, national sales director of Market Development in the Americas, THQ. "We are excited to make our games available for the WildTangent Orb and offer our AAA games to enthusiast gamers online."
Game developers and publishers interested in making their enthusiast titles available for the April launch of the WildTangent enthusiast game console should e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
|Lala Links:||Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez.|
GROW nano vol.3. Thanks Jay is Games.
|Links of the Evening:||Random Fact Generator. Thanks jimnms.|
Bank accidentally gives man $5 million.
Stanford drops tuition for some students.
Sharper Image files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Thanks Neutronbeam.
Tonight's Eclipse of the Moon. Thanks Jim.
Self-healing rubber bounces back.
|Auction:||Halo Master Chief Spartan Costume. Thanks Merdoc.|
Than the BFG. Thanks Blargo.
How to Abuse Rollercoaster Tycoon 3: Massacre.
Weather may delay satellite shot.
Conspiracy buffs may feast on JFK documents.
|Teh Funny:||Dilbert. Explained here.|
Cary, NC, February 20, 2008 – Stranger, the new RTS/RPG hybrid title from Fireglow Games, has gone gold today. The game, set to begin shipping in North America on March 3, puts players in the role of a mysterious hero lost in a strange fantasy world. Stranger features a deep magic and enchantment system, and a rich world populated by more than a hundred unique monster types. Players can take control of three characters and enjoy a single-player campaign lasting more than 30 hours, while also being able to take their game online in eight-person Internet multiplayer matches. For more information about Stranger, visit the official Web site at http://stranger-game.com.
It’s a fantasy come true: Epic role-playing adventure and real-time tactical confrontations collide in Stranger, a sprawling saga of sword and sorcery mayhem set in a world beyond your wildest imagination!
As one of three battle-hardened heroes, explore a hostile surface kingdom and mysterious subterranean realm, growing your combat skills and magical abilities. Blade and spell streak across the screen in a dizzying dance as you duel with slavering beasts and mutant monstrosities, using intuitive enchantment and melee systems or ruthless mercenaries’ help to defeat opponents. Gather not just your courage, but also wits and resources before proceeding. From recruiting ultra-powerful allies to going face-to-face with the blackest evil and amassing a mystical arsenal capable of seeing you safely through this epic tale, you’ll need all to meet the challenges which lie within.
Some of the top technology companies, including Intel, Microsoft, Dell, and Advanced Micro Devices joined forces Tuesday to form the PC Gaming Alliance, which will try to promote the PC as a gaming platform.
The alliance will bring hardware makers, software companies, and game publishers under one roof to "accelerate innovation, improve the gaming experience for consumers and serve as a collective source of market information and expertise on PC gaming," the alliance said in a statement.
The companies will work together on challenges facing the PC gaming industry, including piracy and the establishment of hardware requirements for PC games, the alliance said. PCGA also hopes to accelerate growth of the PC gaming industry and standardize the development of gaming PCs and software by developing and promoting guidelines.
The alliance comes at a time when PC video game sales are falling. PC games sales in the U.S. were $910.7 million in 2007, down from $970 million in 2006, according to research from NPD Techworld. PC game sales in 2007 dwarfed in comparison to the sale of software for video game consoles like Sony's PlayStation and Nintendo's Wii, which were $6.6 billion.
Unit shipments of PC game software totaled 36.4 million in 2007, compared to video game software unit shipments of 153.9 million, according to NPD.
The U.S. gaming industry already has the Entertainment Software Association, which represents vendors that publish games for both computers and consoles. About 90 percent of the $7.4 billion revenue of PC and console gaming software in 2006 belonged to ESA members, giving the association a dominant presence.
Other PCGA members include Acer, Epic, Nvidia and Razer USA.
The announcement comes during the Game Developers Conference, which is being held in San Francisco. During the show PCGA member Intel launched a new gaming platform formerly code-named "Skulltrail." The Intel Dual Socket Extreme Desktop Platform includes two quad-core microprocessors, totaling eight-processing engines, and supports graphics cards from ATI or Nvidia.
AGOURA HILLS, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--THQ Inc. (NASDAQ:THQI - News) today announced that Volition, Inc.’s critically acclaimed Red Faction® franchise will make its open-world, next-generation debut with Red Faction®: Guerrilla™. Set 50 years after the climactic events of the original Red Faction, this third-person open-world action-shooter will return to Mars and once again re-define the limits of destruction-based game-play. Red Faction: Guerrilla is currently in development for Microsoft Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, Sony PLAYSTATION® 3 computer entertainment system, and Windows-based PC, and is scheduled to ship in THQ’s fiscal year 2009.
"Red Faction is one THQ’s most successful and critically acclaimed original franchises to date, with a huge global base of loyal fans waiting to join the new revolution," said Brad Carraway, director of global brand management, THQ. "With the game’s unique pairing of true physics-based destruction, fast-paced guerrilla warfare style combat, and a massive world to explore – Red Faction: Guerrilla will redefine the limits of open-world gaming.”
“Red Faction: Guerrilla expands the signature destruction elements of the series and pushes the boundaries of next-gen gaming on a massive, terra-formed Mars where gamers can literally tear down the enemy EDF presence brick by brick,” said Mike Kulas, president of Volition, Inc. ”With a new 3rd person perspective, a full cover system that allows for guerrilla style tactics and a diverse planet to explore we’re excited to revitalize the gripping world of Red Faction for high-definition platforms.”
About Red Faction: Guerrilla
Red Faction: Guerrilla is a 3rd person, open-world action shooter set on Mars, 50 years after the events of the original Red Faction. Players will take the role of an insurgent fighter with the newly re-established Red Faction movement as they battle for liberation from the oppressive Earth Defense Force. Throughout their fight for freedom, players will carve their own path, wreaking havoc across the vast, open-world environment of Mars, from the desolate mining outpost of Parker to the gleaming EDF capital city of Eos. Utilizing improvised weapons, explosives and re-purposed mining equipment and vehicles, Red Faction: Guerrilla allows players to tear through fully destructible environments in an unforgiving Martian landscape swarming with EDF forces, Red Faction resistance fighters, and the downtrodden settlers caught in the cross-fire. Red Faction: Guerrilla will also feature a robust multiplayer component, including several modes focused on destruction-based gameplay. Currently in development for Microsoft Xbox 360, Sony PLAYSTATION 3, and Windows PC, Red Faction: Guerrilla is expected to ship to retailers worldwide in THQ’s fiscal year 2009.
LOS GATOS, CA--(Marketwire - February 20, 2008) - Cryptic Studios™, one of the leading independent developers of massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs), announced today Champions Online™, their first ever self-developed and self-published MMORPG. Champions Online, based on the popular pen-and-paper Champions RPG, will give players the power of total customization of their hero experience while they explore a vast universe of richly detailed 3D environments. Champions Online is slated for release in Spring 2009.
Cryptic Studios also announced today that it has acquired the Champions intellectual property (IP) from Hero Games. First published in 1981, the Champions role-playing game is one of the first RPGs to forgo the traditional dice-rolling system of character generation in favor of a point-based system. Cryptic Studios has licensed back to Hero Games the rights to produce Champions RPG books, and the sixth edition of the HERO System and Champions, set to release in 2009, will include rules on how to recreate Champions Online characters and scenarios.
"We thought carefully about which IP to select for our next game," said Jack Emmert, chief creative officer of Cryptic Studios. "I've been playing the Champions RPG since it first came out and I love both the rich history and wide array of compelling characters which made this an obvious choice for Cryptic Studios."
"I am very excited to be working on Champions," said Michael Lewis, president of Cryptic Studios. "We have a powerful development team, a better engine, more resources, and a vision for a new kind of MMO experience. Bringing the operating side of the business in-house enables us to be more efficient, get our developers even closer to the customer, and ultimately make a better game and long-term experience."
Champions Online is all about total customization -- it will offer a near infinite amount of character customization so that all players will have a unique game experience. Gamers will be able to create their hero's name, back story, costume, powers and abilities as well as design their own personal arch-enemy and his or her back story, which will guarantee a truly unique experience.
"Champions Online brings a lot to the table. Gamers have literally billions of options to create their own fully customized hero," Emmert said. "Couple that with the unique character generation system and tons of beautiful, expansive environments in which to roam, and Champions Online is going to be unlike anything MMO fans have seen before."
For more information on Champions Online and Cryptic Studios please check out the feature story in the March issue of Game Informer magazine on newsstands now, www.crypticstudios.com, and www.champions-online.com to view character profiles, gameplay trailers, and forums.
NEW YORK, Feb. 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Atari, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATAR - News), one of the world's most recognized brands and a third-party video game publisher and distributor, today announced that ArmA: Gold, the compilation of ArmA: Combat Operations and ArmA: Queens Gambit the official expansion pack from Bohemia Interactive, has shipped to retailers in North America. ArmA: Gold is rated M for Mature and is now available at the suggested retail price of $49.95. ArmA: Queens Gambit, the expansion pack only, has been released exclusively for digital download for the Windows platform for the suggested retail price of $29.95.
"ArmA: Queens Gambit takes players back into the battlefield for an exceptionally realistic action-packed combat experience," said Todd Slepian, Producer, Atari, Inc. "With the ArmA: Gold bundle, fans of ArmA: Combat Operations will be able to revisit their favorite tactical missions and engage in all new campaigns as seasoned veterans."
In ArmA: Combat Operations, players will be able to engage in the story-driven single-player campaign or take part in huge multiplayer battles with more than 50 players on one battlefield at once. Featuring a vast environment with more than 150 square miles to explore, ArmA: Combat Operations allows players to pilot or drive more than 30 vehicles including APCs, tanks, self-propelled anti-aircraft guns, helicopters and fighter planes.
ArmA: Queens Gambit will offer a new story-based campaign occurring 18 months after the ArmA: Combat Operations war conflict. In the same realistic combat simulation experience, players take on the role of a group of seasoned mercenaries to help the government with a sensitive matter that the army cannot handle alone. With unprecedented freedom of movement, actions and tactics, the game will allow players to immerse themselves in battle with six completely new characters, new vehicles and seven original campaigns.
For more information on Atari and its entire product line-up please visit www.atari.com.
WESTWOOD, MA – February 20, 2008 - Turbine, Inc. announced today that in the wake of the global success of The Lord of the Rings Online™: Shadows of Angmar™, named the 2007 PC Game of the Year*, it has reached an agreement with Tolkien Enterprises to extend it’s license to develop Massively Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Games (MMORPG) based on The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien to 2014 with additional options to extend the rights until 2017.
“We’re thrilled with the global success of The Lord of the Rings Online since its launch in 2007,” said Jim Crowley, president and CEO of Turbine, Inc. “With the recent announcement of what are sure to be two blockbuster films based on The Hobbit and a sequel, we expect the success of the license and our relationship with Tolkien Enterprises to grow for years to come.”
“We have had a wonderful working relationship with Turbine over the past several years,” said Albert M. Bendich, Executive Vice President of The Saul Zaentz Company, and its merchandising division Tolkien Enterprises. “We look forward to our continuing success with Turbine as it pushes the envelope for compelling online entertainment and gameplay to bring the compelling characters of Middle-earth to life for Tolkien fans around the world.”
“Also, their settlement offer is far more than the $150k I've seen here. As another example of their cluelessness, they have asked for 20 percent of game revenues, along with a far richer settlement number.
3D Realms never settles, period. If we're in-the-right (as we've *always* been), we battle to the end just on principle alone. If it gets out that you're a company that settles, you invite dozens of lawsuits like this.”
"They have no actual case, only a fantasy they've created in a sad effort to strike it big off the backs of creative, dedicated people in our industry. You can be utterly sure we will not settle because we have not done what they've claimed--our ideas are 100 percent self-created.
Talk to me in a few months when this thing is behind us, and you'll see they failed to extort any money from us. We've been involved in several lawsuits of this type, and in each case we've prevailed as having done no wrong, and without paying a dime in settlement extortion. When fully innocent as we are here, on principle alone we will never settle."
The maiden project for the new complex will be CKI's collaboration with the Swedish company Mindark, makers of Entropia Universe, an enormously successful Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (MMORG) with a real cash economy that is already positioned to challenge the dominance of market leader World of Warcraft. CKI, the first high-profile architectural firm to be enlisted for such an undertaking, will design an entire planet within Entropia Universe.
"I think it's a huge tragedy. I mean, you might as well say PC gaming is World of Warcraft and The Sims... The weird thing is everyone's got a PC, they're just not buying software for it," commented Molyneux.
And while many developers are chasing the casual PC gaming market as the next big thing, Molyneux believes it's already suffering from repetition and a lack of imagination.
"There's an enormous amount of gaming happening with PopCap, Big Fish and Reflective.
"The fascinating thing is when they first started, all these games came out like Peggle and Mystery Files and Alice Greensleeves and Diner Dash, and it felt quite exciting. There was a lot of innovation going on. Okay, there weren't great graphics, but there was innovation.
"In my view, that has completely stopped. They're doing the same game over and over again with a different wrapper. It's like a mini-universe in itself which is emulating what's happening in our industry," he added.
|Timely Links:||Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez.|
|Links of the Morning:||X-Wing Fighter Art Sled.|
Never Lost, but Found: Daily Japanese Honesty. Thanks
Postcard Delivered 79 Years Later.
Physicist Neil Turok: Big Bang Wasn't the Beginning.
Long Nights, 90 Below. What More Could Astronomers Want? Thanks Neutronbeam.
The CRAZIEST low pass ever by a Helicopter.
2 geezers - 1 RC plane.
If it quacks like a duck, it's probably... a CAT?
Subnormality. Thanks Digg.