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Monday, Jan 16, 2012 Martin Luther King Jr. Day


Thief 4 Online Features?

NeoGAF has what seem to be some revelations about Thief 4 based on the résumés of a couple of the developers working on the next installment in the beloved action/stealth series. The post, which is from a couple of weeks ago, picks up tidbits from LinkedIn profiles to deduce that it looks like the game will be using the Unreal engine and will include some soft of online support based on info posted by the game's Online Programmer. Thanks Computer and Video Games.

Snipers Next Month

Bigben Interactive announces Snipers, an online-only sharpshooting first-person shooter in the works release on the PS3 (thanks Gamer's Hell). This trailer offers a look at the game, and also reveals plans to also release it for Windows PC and Xbox 360 and that all three SKUs are expected next month. Here's a feature list:

  • On-line multiplayer FPS playable with up to 12 players
  • 5 game modes especially developed for snipers
  • 6 futuristic sniper guns, 2 handguns and 20 types of equipment
  • 10 multiplayer maps
  • Can be played with the PlayStation®Move motion controller or the DUALSHOCK®3 wireless controller
  • Exclusively for the PS3™ system, a PlayStation®Move motion controller compatible sniper gun.

World of Darkness Details

World of Darkness News has a video interview with Chris McDonough, where the senior producer on World of Darkness discusses plans for CCP's upcoming supernatural MMOG. They summarize

  • Bloodlines the PC game is a big inspiration to the MMO, they are trying to capture the same atmosphere/using it as a point of reference.
  • He finds PnP RPG's natural to move into a MMO as it is about individual characters not a specific one (ie Spiderman).
  • A lot of focus on player to player interactions due to lack of GM unlike a table top session.
    Confirms single shard concept from EVE will be used due to shared technology. (Who called this 6 months ago? oh that's right, me. )
  • States there is still a AAA team working on the MMO from all aspects of the gaming industry.
    Wanted to focus on vampires only to give depth due to focusing on only one playable supernatural on launch.
  • Said on the surface the game will not seem to be about supernaturals but becomes evident when your character digs into the game world.

Max Payne 3 Preorder Bonuses

Rockstar Games outlines exclusive preorder bonuses for Max Payne 3 in Europe and Australia, also recapping some North American bonuses along the way. There's the opportunity to get a multiplayer map, a multiplayer loadout pack, or a free copy of the game's first paid multiplayer DLC, depending on where the third-persons hooter sequel is preordered.

Evening Consolidation

Evening Metaverse

Evening Tech Bits

Evening Legal Briefs

etc., etc.

Into the Black

The Digital Eel Website has a heartfelt goodbye to Digital Eel co-founder Bill "Phosphorous" Sears, who died of heart-related problems over the weekend. They outline their friendship with Bill and all the contributions he made to the community before his untimely passing. Condolences to Bill's family and friends.

THQ Rumors: DMO on the Block?

A thread on NeoGAF hashes through rumors that THQ is close to declaring bankruptcy, and all of the publisher/developer's 2014 games are cancelled (thanks joao). There's a thread about this on reddit including a comment from someone claiming to be from THQ (supported by his Steam profile) with no knowledge of this: "I'm employed by THQ/Relic on the DMO team. I am not aware of DMO, or any other projects, being cancelled." The DMO he refers to is Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millennium Online, and (registration required) say "sources" tell them this Warhammer 40K MMOG is currently being shopped around to other companies. This includes a follow-up from THQ with an official statement on this for the press denying the cancellation of their 2014 slate, but also indicating they have "decisions" to make about the future of DMO:

THQ has not cancelled its 2014 line-up, and has not made any decisions regarding the planned MMO.

As part of the ongoing review of our business, we have made decisions to ensure that the company is strategically addressing the most attractive markets. As we have previously announced, we have dramatically reduced our commitment to the kids' boxed games sector which leads to a significantly more focused release schedule moving forward.

Our slate for calendar 2012 and beyond is focused on high-quality core games and continues to build our digital platform and business. We are excited for our pipeline of original and high-quality content along with our relationships with some of the best talent in the industry.

Dead Island DLC Next Month

Deep Silver announces Ryder White, a new DLC pack due next month for Dead Island, Techland's zombie game. Here's word on the pack, which is due on February 1st for Windows PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3:

16th January 2012 - Hampshire, UK/... Deep Silver today announced the upcoming release of a brand new story DLC for the award-winning game Dead Island.

This DLC offers a unique new perspective into the incidents in the main story of Dead Island: This time the player will get the chance to play as Ryder White, the antagonist of the main game; learn more about his motivations and why, from his point of view, he did what he had to do. This fresh take on the Dead Island story shows Ryder White both as a military man and a loving husband.

The DLC stars Ryder White as a newly playable character and offers a single player campaign with several hours of story content with twists and turns that will shed new light on the game’s happenings. Two blueprints and weapons will further expand the already impressive arsenal of Dead Island.

The DLC will be available on February 01, 2012 for the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system, the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and Windows PC. It will be available for 800 Microsoft points on Xbox LIVE Marketplace or for £7.99 on PSN and Steam.

Ubi DRM Thwarts Review

An article on Guru3D outlines the site's frustrations with attempting to create a video card performance comparison using Anno 2070, the latest installment in the Anno series of strategy games. As noted on its Steam page, the DRM in Anno 2070 has an installation limit: "Solidshield Tages SAS 3 machine activation limit," and apparently they ran into this limit by changing video cards in their test rig, leading them to title the article "Why Guru3D probably never will review Ubisoft titles anymore." There seems to be a resolution at the end of all this, as there's an update at the end saying that while the publishing arm of Ubisoft was unwilling to help them with their plight, they contacted Blue Byte, and the Ubi-owned developer of the game was able to unlock the game to suit their review needs. Thanks ASLayerAODsk via techPowerUp.

Unstoppable Gorg This Week

Futuremark Games Studio announces the release schedule for Unstoppable Gorg, their sci-fi tower defense game set in space, where no one can hear you scream. They say the Windows PC, OS X, and iPad editions of the game will be released through digital distribution on Thursday, January 19. There is also an Xbox LIVE Arcade edition, which is expected to follow by the middle of this year. Word is: "Get ready to experience a revolution in tower defense later this week when Futuremark® Games Studio releases Unstoppable Gorg, a thrilling new tower defense game that challenges you to defend the solar system from fearsome aliens by sending satellites into orbit. Unlike other tower defense games, in Unstoppable Gorg you can move your towers by rotating the orbits that surround planets, moons and space stations."

Cultures: Northland for OS X

The Mac App Store now offers digital distribution of Cultures: Northland, a Mac OS X edition of Northland, which was released several years ago for Windows PCs as a sequel to Cultures 2. Word is: "Cultures: Northland follows the story of a wandering band of Vikings, guided by a quartet of heroes named Bjarni (son of the famous explorer Leif Ericsson), his lover Cyra, and their friends Hatchi and Sigurd. Hatchi soon finds that his homeland is overrun by enemies. As a result, he calls upon his friends for help. The game's campaign is spread out over eight missions, and you can also play an additional eight stand-alone missions that are unrelated to the story."

Amazon 2011 Top Sellers

Joystiq has Amazon's report of the top-selling physical and downloadable games of 2011 sold through the online giant (thanks (registration required)). Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 was the number one physical seller, and since it's more reflective of PC sales, here's the list of digital bestsellers:

  1. Deus Ex: Human Revolution
  2. Battlefield 3
  3. The Sims 3
  4. Battlefield Bad Company 2
  5. Sid Meir's Civilization V
  6. Dead Island
  7. Total War: Shogun 2
  8. Call of Duty Modern Warfare 3
  9. Crysis 2
  10. Dragon Age 2

U.K. Charts

GfK Chart-Track outlines the 20 bestselling full-price PC entertainment titles in the U.K. for the week ending January 14th. Football Manager 2012 retains the top spot on a fairly stable list. FM 2012 is also once again atop the PC chart, which is likewise lagely unchanged over the past week.

Morning Previews

Morning Consolidation

Morning Mobilization

Morning Metaverse

Morning Tech Bits

Morning Safety Dance

Morning Legal Briefs

Game Reviews

Hardware Reviews


Out of the Blue

In addition to celebrating the Giants advancing in the playoffs, today is also the celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday. The civil rights leader's actual birthday was yesterday, so this gives you a second chance to get him a gift if you forgot.

Celebratory Links: Thanks Ant and Mike Martinez and Acleacius.
Play: Canyon Defense 2.
Catnarok Longcat Rampage 2.
Links: Metku Pinball.
Stories: Brooklyn Bourbon? Fuggedaboutit.
Science: Breaking up the indivisible to observe the implausible.
China's Pollution Is So Insane You Can See It From Space. Thanks HARDOCP.
Images: Abbey Road Meets Charlie Brown. Barefoot Snoopy should be 3rd.
Media: 7 Stages of Skyrim Addiction. NSFW.
Ricky Gervais 2012 Golden Globes Opening Monologue.
Cat Loves Drinking Beer.
The Funnies: xkcd: Batman.

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