Archived News:

Friday, Sep 05, 2008

Bionic Commando Rearmed Patch

The Bionic Commando Website offers the first patch for the PC edition of Bionic Commando Rearmed. The new version should address performance issues encountered when playing the game on single-core computers. Word is the patch: "should get Rearmed up and running on your machine like molten butter."

Steam Sales - Steam Clear Sky Delay

Steam News announces the latest of what seem like regular weekly sales, saying they are offering all id Software Games for 50% off. This offer ends September 8. In other news for bargain hunters, Steam is also now offering sales of Age of Conan: Hyborian Adventures, offering Funcom's MMORPG for 10% off until September 11. Finally, Steam News announces they are taking preorders for the Steam edition of S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, offering 10% off of purchases before the release date of September 15. This has caused some consternation on the Steam forums, as the game supposed to be available for online purchase when it arrived in stores (story). Thanks theyarecomingforyou.

Far Cry 2: Lose A Buddy, Lose Content

Videogaming247 reports an interesting tidbit about Far Cry 2 they picked up at the Games convention. Apparently when one of the game's NPC "buddy" characters meets an untimely demise, the game content associated with that character dies as well. They quote Patrick Redding, the narrative head on the shooter follow-up: "That’s the price you pay for having buddies. When I unlock a buddy like that and then use him, either by getting involved in one of his missions… or by allowing him to come and rescue me, there’s always a risk that he could be killed. If he’s killed, he’s gone forever and the content associated with that character is no long available to me. So for example, any side quests that he’d be able to give me are no longer available."

Evening Previews

Evening Screenshots

Gatherings & Competitions

Far Cry 2 US Date

GameSpot follows up news of the UK Far Cry 2 release date (story) saying that they've learned from Ubisoft that October 21 is when to expect the shooter follow-up in the US, which is the date listed by online retailers for some time now. As mentioned in the announcement of the UK date, a Collector's Edition will be sold in addition to the standard edition, offering a wooden box and additional goodies.

BioShock 2, Borderlands, Mafia II by November '09

MCV reports that BioShock 2 is planned for release during Take-Two's 2009 fiscal year, which runs from November 1, 2008 through October 31, 2009. This was revealed during the investor's conference call that followed the announcement of Take-Two's third-quarter financial results (story). In addition to the sequel to the objectivist first-person shooter, other products planned for release during that period are Borderlands, Mafia 2, GTA IV "episodic content," and the mobile game GTA Chinatown Wars.

Spore Login Problems

Electronic Arts UK Forums have word that EA is aware of issues purchasers of the just-released (in Europe) Spore are having logging in, along with other server problems. They say they are working to fix this as soon as possible, and in the meantime, you should remove your clothes: "We are aware that many of you are having login problems with Spore. This is being investigated so please bare with us." Thanks Eurogamer.

Dead Space Not Banned in Germany reports hearing from Electronic Arts that the report that Dead Space has been banned in Germany (story) are not accurate. According to the story (which is in the site's native German), the game has not yet gone through the rigorous German classification process, which has been known to harshly judge games with violent content. Destructoid's had also reported the horror game has been banned in Japan and China, but there has been no follow-up on the accuracy of that part of the story. Thanks Videogaming247.

Far Cry 2 UK Date

MCV has word that October 24 is the UK release date for Far Cry 2, Ubisoft's African follow-up to Crytek's tropical first-person shooter. That date applies to the Windows, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 editions of the game, as well as a special Collector's edition that will include a t-shirt, a making-of DVD, an art box, and give you wood, as it is all housed in an "exclusive" wooden box.

Call of Duty: World at War UK Date

Activision Blizzard announces a UK release date for Call of Duty: World at War, saying the Windows, Xbox 360, Wii, DS, PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3 editions of the military shooter sequel will hit ye olde game shoppes on November 14. Europeans will also participate in the October beta test that was announced with yesterday's news of a November 11 US release date (story). Call of Duty: World at War, developed by Treyarch, returns the series to its original setting of World War II.

Gold - Mac Call of Duty 4

Aspyr announces the completion of development on the Macintosh edition of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, saying the now-gold Mac edition of Infinity Ward's military shooter sequel should be in stores on September 15. An Intel Mac running OS X 10.5.4 or later is required, and integrated video chipsets are not supported. Those interested in preordering the game can do so via this page.

Gold - Mount&Blade

Paradox Interactive announces that Mount&Blade is gold, ending a beta period for Turkish developer TaleWorlds' medieval role-playing game that's gone on for years now. The game will be released for digital download on GamersGate and will be available in North American stores on September 16, and in Europe on September 19. Word is: "Mount & Blade is a single-player, third or first-person action/role-playing game set in the medieval war-torn land of Calradia. The game features groundbreaking horseback combat, intuitive swordplay, and a free-form environment in which players can roam freely to explore new cities, conquer foreign armies and earn a reputation as the realm's most courageous warrior."

Wright's Spore Hype

Spore - changing the game is a BBC article talking with Maxis about Spore, getting Will Wright to overcome his aversion to hype, quoting the designer as saying: "Spore will change the way people look at games forever and change hopefully the perception people have of their own creativity." It's that creativity that is the focus of the article, as they talk more about creature creation, and the role players have in furthering the content of the game going forward. They also touch on ambitions for Spore as a brand, once again mentioning the possibility that this will eventually be another label for EA, like Wright's The Sims. Also, Behind the prototyping of 'Spore' on CNET looks at the role of prototyping in the development of the game. In another Spore related note, we want to follow-up on yesterday's Spore shipping news (story) by clearly stating the game's North American release will be this Sunday, September 7, a simple date that was posted incorrectly here at first, and was still wrong even after a first attempt at correcting the error. Apologies for the confusion. Thanks Mike Martinez and Ant.

LEGO Batman Next Month

MCV reports that October 10 is the planned release date for LEGO Batman, the action game based on the exploits of the brick knight, speculating that the success of the Dark Knight movie will have a positive impact on the game's sales, even though the two do not directly tie-in to each other. They press developer Traveller’s Tales for a clue about their next brixillated game, and were told that TT is still concentrating on LEGO Batman, but that "as long as we create fresh and fun LEGO games there is certainly life in the brand."

Dead Space Banned in Germany, China, Japan

Destructoid reports learning from Dead Space community manager Andrew Green that the science-fiction horror game has been banned in Germany, China, and Japan due to its gruesome content. It's not clear if EA plans to submit censored versions of the game for these territories. Follow-up: EA says the report that Dead Space is banned in German is not accurate (story).

On Sins Sales

Gamasutra quotes Stardock's Brad Wardell saying that the success of Sins of a Solar Empire is in part based on design decisions by developer Ironclad Games that lead to low system requirements, saying the game will look great running on a four year-old video card. As to that success, he says the game has sold about a half-million copies, about 400,000 boxed copies and another 100,000 via digital distribution. Those numbers are more than sufficient to make the game a roaring success, as it cost less than one million dollars to produce.

Gamer's Bill of Rights Follow-up

Devs Leery of -Gamer’s Bill of Rights on Edge Online follows up with Stardock's Brad Wardell about the recently proposed Gamer's Bill of Rights (story). As the article's title suggests, there has been some resistance among developers to the idea, which was co-authored by Chris Taylor of Gas Powered Games, with Edge finding numerous developers to be "standoffish" when asked about the subject. Wardell says he also found some of his colleagues more receptive, but there were vagaries (like defining when a game is "in a finished state") and intellectual property issues that would prevent a wholehearted endorsement. The article specifically quotes Microsoft's Kevin Unangst saying: "Microsoft certainly agrees with the importance of improving the quality and consistency of PC games. For two years now, Microsoft's Games for Windows program has worked to make great Windows games even better, and this is why Stardock and many other publishers are participating in the program."

Diablo III Q&A

The Diablo III Q&A on GameBanshee hits Fallout/Troika veteran Leonard Boyarsky with their +1 club of interrogation to learn about his participation in development of Blizzard's eagerly anticipated action/RPG sequel. They discuss how he came to be part of the Diablo III team, gameplay, expanding the game's RPG elements, fleshing out non-player characters, and more.

Empire: Total War Q&A

The Empire: Total War Q&A on Strategy Informer hears from Creative Assembly about Empire: Total War, the next installment in the large-scale strategy series. Topics include campaign changes since Medieval II: Total War, that battles can feature up to 10,000 units, the increased focus on battle AI, the addition of naval combat to the series, and more.

Tabula Rasa Interview

The PAX08 Interview with Dane Caruthers on Massively talks with this associate producer on Tabula Rasa, NCsoft's clean slate MMORPG. The short conversation discusses efforts to get new and former players to give the game a try in its current state and changes in the current update 12 and the upcoming update 13 for the game.

Morning Previews

Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


Out of the Blue

Early September tackle football is disorienting enough, but a Thursday night season opener is that much weirder. The Giants won, though, so I won't complain; and they played during the final convention night for each of the major political parties, so I think they fulfilled the requirements of all applicable equal time laws.

Fulfilled Links: Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez.
Play: Aether. From the designer of Gish.
Brawl Royale.
Links: Top 10 Game Technologies of the Next-Generation. A mix of new and old. Thanks Slashdot.
Disaster Movie Finally Scores A 0% On Rotten Tomatoes For The “Movie” Movies. Thanks Digg.
Story: Elephant cured of drug addiction.
Science: 10 Myths About the Common Cold and Flu.
Mammoths moved 'out of America'.
Auction: Hendrix's burnt guitar at auction.
Images: 60 Foot Spider in Liverpool. Thanks Bob.
Media: Hax - A Solution.
Golf Ball Knockout.
Pilot Uses Helicopter to Cut His Birthday Cake.
Teh Funnies: The Joy of Tech. Thanks Digg.
If You See Something. Thanks Digg.
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