Archived News:

Monday, Sep 08, 2008


Yes, just Spore. 'Spore' is Will Wright's latest game-changer on Also, Exclusive How to Build a Better Being Preview has the first ten minutes of a program on Spore that will air on the National Geographic Channel tomorrow. Meanwhile, Art Imitates Life- Long-Awaited Spore Video Game Based on Real Scientific Research. Finally, Spore Spurns Older Macbooks.

Duke Nukem Movie Plans

The Scott Faye interview on Kotaku talks with the producer of the Max Payne movie about his plans to follow that project with a screen adaptation of Duke Nukem. This is presumably a different movie than the Duke movie project announced in 2001 (story), though Faye is said to have been working on the Max Payne movie for ten years now, so who knows. Besides, that is still short compared with the development time spent on, well, never mind. Faye is still working on the Alice movie, and is also said to be working with Scott Miller’s Radar Group on a number of new cross-media franchises that are being designed from the ground up as games and films in addition to the new Duke movie. The Q&A does make it clear that this is a development deal that does not yet have studio backing: "With the two new games coming out based on Duke Nukem, I'm working at establishing a Duke film scenario that will compel a studio to finance a feature version. Certainly, there's a large audience that knows and loves this character."

Evening Previews

Evening Screenshots

Project Origin Becomes F.E.A.R. 2, Date Revealed

IGN reports that Warner Bros. and Monolith have regained the rights to the F.E.A.R. name, and have changed the title of Project Origin to F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin. This F.E.A.R. sequel previously could not use that title, as the F.E.A.R. name (but not the story) remained in the control of publisher Sierra. This puts an end to potential confusion caused by the F.E.A.R. sequel carrying a different title. WBIE and Monolith were able to secure the naming rights after the Activision Blizzard merger put the future of the Sierra brand in doubt. The article promises more details are coming soon and includes a video interview discussing the name change. They also nail down the release date for the game, which is February 10, 2009 for all platforms. Thanks Gamer's Hell.

Far Cry 2 NA Date Confirmed, LE Preorder Offer

Ubisoft officially confirms the October 21 North American release date for Far Cry 2 revealed on Friday (story). The announcement includes news of an exclusive deal with GameStop that will get preorder customers an exclusive limited edition of the game at no additional cost. The Limited Edition will offer a fold-out map, exclusive packaging, and "6 Bonus Missions with about 3 bonus hours of explosive gameplay."

S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky in NA Next Week

GSC Game World announces September 15 as the new North American release date for S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Clear Sky, after the shooter prequel was delayed from its planned September 5 release (story), reportedly due to the absence of CD keys in the package. GSC also says "The digital download release date has not yet been determined," but Valve made an announcement on Friday (story) likewise saying the Steam edition of Clear Sky is due on September 15.

LOTRO: Mines of Moria Interview, Movie

The Jeffrey Steefel interview on the Lord of the Rings Online Vault talks with the executive producer on The Lord of the Rings Online about the upcoming Mines of Moria expansion for the MMORPG. The conversation is formatted into an article that previews what to expect from the add-on. Also, there's a new Mines of Moria movie that shows off The Flaming Deeps, a new region that will be added in the expansion. The movie can be found on FileFront and Gamer's Hell.

Crysis Warhead PC Specs

GameSetWatch has further details on what's being called "The Warhead PC," saying this machine designed specifically for Crysis Warhead will be officially announced next week and the PC itself should be available when Crysis Warhead ships on September 16. The system is built around an Intel E7300 CPU and an NVIDIA 9800GT graphics card, and it was designed by Crytek with the goal of being able to run their upcoming shooter sequel at 30 FPS while costing no more than $700 USD. After the box was designed, it was used to benchmark the game, and they made sure to optimize any areas where performance lagged. As to why this is all going on, they quote Crysis franchise producer Bernd Diemer saying: "EA’s not getting into the hardware business, and Crytek isn’t either. The biggest thing for us is convenience. We want to make PC gaming convenient." Thanks Mike Martinez and Kotaku.

Force Unleashed to PCs? LucasArts Says No

We received a statement from LucasArts regarding the possibility of a PC edition of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed referenced in the story below. While they cannot be certain what it was the Pixelux Entertainment COO said on the topic, they are unequivocal in their denial that a PC port is in the works: "I can tell you definitively that there is no PC version of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed planned."

Star Wars: The Force Unleashed to PCs?

A PC edition of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed may be in the works, according to an overt implication at NVIDIA's recent NVISION 08 Conference as reported by Rock, Paper, Shotgun. During a presentation by Pixelux Entertainment, who created the physics in the just-released Star Wars console game, the company's COO Vik Sohal had this to say: "…Just been released last week on the internet, the Force Unleashed demo on both the PS3 and Xbox 360. We have a PC version as well."

European WAR Beta Signups Resume Today

The European Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning Website has an update on the problematic launch of European open beta testing of Mythic's upcoming MMORPG (story). Word is European WAR server operator G.O.A. has been hard at work on the underlying hardware and software issues, and to prevent registrations from overwhelming their capacity, things will be handled differently when they go back online today: "As a result, we will launch a new code validation page today at 16:00 CET. This new page will feature a delay between the input and the validation of the key. You will now receive a confirmation email within a few minutes of entering your key. On a related topic; if you created a war-europe account yesterday and have a validation email for this, these changes will allow you to follow that link and validate your account."

Deus Ex 3 Details Next Month?

The NeoGAF Forums have a scan promoting the upcoming 200th print issue of PC Zone indicating the magazine will offer details on Deus Ex 3, saying "The conspiracy is revealed…" The corner of the page says the issue will go on sale on October 9. Thanks Videogaming247.

Brad Wardell Interview

Stardock Interview Part 1 on Shacknews talks with Brad Wardell, focusing on the recent Gamer's Bill of Rights proposed by the Stardock CEO and Chris Taylor of Gas Powered Games (story). They dig for more details about the proposal, and in light of recent indications that is not getting widespread support in the industry (story), they inquire if this was just a publicity stunt: "Well certainly it's a publicity stunt. The idea is to get the word out there. Because at the end of the day, the only ones that are gonna really make this happen are the gamers themselves, if they start to make purchasing decisions based on those who would adhere to some kind of standard."

Dominions 3: The Awakening Linux Patch

Dominions 3: The Awakening Website now offers a new patch to update the 64-bit Linux edition of Illwinter Game Design's fantasy-themed strategy sequel to version 3.20b. The new version addresses a network bug that turned up in penguin-powered edition of the recent version 3.20 patch (story), but the bug does not impact the Windows or Mac editions of the game.

More Spore Prototypes

EA's Spore Prototypes Page now offers 11 more playable prototype systems "exploring countless design directions in gameplay, simulation and user interface" created as part of the process of designing Spore, the just-released life simulation. As they explain: "Usually these prototypes are never seen by the public, but we thought some of the more intrepid players out there might enjoy playing around with a few of our early Spore prototypes. Keep in mind these are not tested, supported or even easily explained." Thanks Computer and Video Games.

Crysis DL Update Issue

Why EA Should Exchange my -Digital copy- of Crysis for a Physical Retail Copy on Crymod Modding Portal is a lengthy forum thread outlining a frustrating exchange one user had with EA customer support over trying to update a copy of Crysis downloaded from the EA store to work under 64-bit Vista. Workarounds have been devised for this problem, which apparently cannot be applied to the download version due to DRM issues. This customer makes the case for exchanging their digital rights for a physical copy, but meets with a series of canned responses that for the most part fail to address the issue at hand. Thanks Ant and Digg.

MMOG Demographic Analysis

Who plays, how much, and why? Debunking the stereotypical gamer profile on Wiley InterScience offers an extensive analysis of demographic data of MMOG players based on anonymous EverQuest II data supplied by SOE, as outlined on Raph Koster's Website. The study offers some results described as counterintuitive, as summarized in some questions they raise: "Why, for example, are older female players playing at the highest rates? Why are older players playing more when younger people are thought to have more free time? Why are these gamers physically healthier than nongamers? Why do minorities play at lower rates? Why do so many players not practice religion? Did game play cause the mental health outcomes or vice versa?" Thanks Terra Nova and Massively.

Combat Mission Shock Force: Marines Movie

This Videos Page has a new video with around six minutes of footage from the upcoming Marines module for Combat Mission Shock Force. Here's the accompanying blurb: "This video shows some in-game action (turn-based replay) from a US Marines infantry assault against a Syrian held town. The Marines encounter some Syrian tanks - and deal with them swiftly. Both action and command phases are shown, showcasing - among other things - the use of the new "action spot highlight" feature during the Command Phase."

Morning Previews

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews

Out of the Blue

If the local GameStop is any indication, this obscure Spore project you may have heard about might enjoy a little success. The store opens about 11:00 am, and we stopped by shortly after noon, and were told it had already long sold out.

Bestselling Links: Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez.
Play: Star Dominion.
Links: Takahashi Meijin, the first gamer geek ever. Thanks Boing Boing.
Story: Tommy Lee Jones- No Money For Old Men.
Science: Camouflage - How to disappear. Thanks Digg. Apologies to Monty Python.
Media: All Domain Names Are Not Created Equal.
Triumph the Insult Comic Dog visits RNC. Thanks Digg.
A Day in the Life of a Dog (Time Lapse Video).
Teh Funnies: Thanks The Flying Penguin.
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