Monthly Archives: June 2012

Free Play Friday: F1, Battlefield, Magic, and Space!

Justin Calvert throws out some ideas for games that you could be playing without paying this weekend.

 

Get the full article at GameSpot


Free Play Friday: F1, Battlefield, Magic, and Space!” was posted by Justin Calvert on Fri, 29 Jun 2012 16:29:38 -0700

Action-adventure genre in a renaissance, says Splinter Cell dev

Ubisoft Toronto game director claims players are “really hungry” for upcoming Blacklist game, which he says will offer “taut experience.”

 

The action-adventure genre is moving through a renaissance period, claims Splinter Cell: Blacklist developer game director Patrick Redding. In a video interview with GameReactor, the developer asserted that players are “really hungry” for its new game.


The action-adventure series is going through a revival period, says Redding.

The action-adventure series is going through a revival period, says Redding.

“I think something that we“re seeing is there“s been a real renaissance in action-adventure,” he said. “And I think that we“re able to take a lot of the unique features of the Splinter Cell world and really embrace that opportunity.“

Redding further elaborated as to why he believes Splinter Cell: Blacklist offers what players are seeking from an action-adventure game.

“Players would like to have this kind of taut experience in a realistically rendered world, with a really good storyline, and with a hero who is lethal and efficient whose shoes they can step into,” he said. “And I think we“ve got all three of those things.“

Splinter Cell: Blacklist was announced during Microsoft’s 2012 Electronic Entertainment Expo media briefing earlier this month. It is the newest entry in the series and puts players back into the boots of franchise hero Sam Fisher, as he takes on a new global threat. The game is due out during spring 2013 for the PC, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 with Kinect support.

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Action-adventure genre in a renaissance, says Splinter Cell dev” was posted by Eddie Makuch on Fri, 29 Jun 2012 07:10:28 -0700

Call of Duty: Black Ops hitting Mac this fall

Activision’s 2010 first-person shooter hitting Apple computers courtesy of regular series publisher Aspyr Media this fall at retail and online.

 

Almost two years after its original release on consoles, Windows PCs, and mobile devices, Activision’s megapopular shooter Call of Duty: Black Ops is headed to the Mac. Regular Call of Duty publisher Aspyr is bringing the game to the Mac platform this fall at retail and online, according to an announcement on the firm’s website.


Black Ops is gunning for the Mac this fall.

Black Ops is gunning for the Mac this fall.

Call of Duty: Black Ops hitting the Mac is big news for Aspyr. Company executive vice president Ted Staloch said the launch of Black Ops represents the “biggest” software debut in the firms’ 17-year history.

Players who pick up the Mac version of Black Ops will also be able to purchase the game’s four downloadable content add-ons. The First Strike, Escalation, Annihilation, and Rezurrection packs will be made available “later this year.” More details will be announced “soon,” Aspyr said.

Aspyr has published a host of Call of Duty games for Mac, including Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Call of Duty 2, and the original Call of Duty. Call of Duty: Black Ops is the best-selling entry in the shooter series to date, moving more than 25 million copies as of August 2011.

For more on the original Black Ops, check out GameSpot’s review of the console version.

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Call of Duty: Black Ops hitting Mac this fall” was posted by Eddie Makuch on Fri, 29 Jun 2012 06:19:10 -0700

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow DLC a ‘mistake’ says Konami

Company rep says it never planned DLC for game, but senior management thought it would be a good idea; content ended up being “rushed.”

 

Developing downloadable content for 2010’s Castlevania: Lords of Shadow was a “mistake,” publisher Konami told Gameranx recently. Head of product planning and development Dave Cox said Konami never intended to create any DLC for the action game, but ended up building the Reverie and Resurrection add-ons at the request of higher-ups.


It was a “mistake” to make DLC for the original Lords of Shadow, says Konami.

“The problem was that the game’s success caught everyone by surprise. It caught senior management by surprise and they wanted us to do DLC,” Cox said. “We never planned to do DLC, so we ended up doing DLC after the fact and in hindsight that was a mistake. It was rushed. We had to rush it to market.”

Despite its rushed nature, Cox said the DLC for Lords of Shadow was effective in that it “enriched the story.” GameSpot’s review of the Reverie add-on found it too be generally pleasing, but short, requiring about an hour to complete.

Cox did not share specific DLC plans for its upcoming sequel Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2, but he did offer a tease concerning the path Konami would take with potential content for the game.

“I think if we were going to do DLC again it would have to be planned right from the get go,” he said. “And it wouldn’t be something that would try to build upon an ending–it would be something that’s perhaps a side story that enriches the original story. If we were going to do DLC again, it would be something much more carefully considered.”

For more on the recent and upcoming Castlevania games, check out GameSpot’s review of Castlevania: Lords of Shadow and previous coverage of 2013’s Lords of Shadow 2.

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Castlevania: Lords of Shadow DLC a ‘mistake’ says Konami” was posted by Eddie Makuch on Fri, 29 Jun 2012 06:17:59 -0700

LucasArts creative director quits

Splinter Cell, Far Cry dev Clint Hocking leaves San Francisco studio for new mystery company on the heels of Star Wars 1313 announcement.

 

After two years, LucasArts creative director Clint Hocking has left the Star Wars studio. In a terse up to his personal blog, Hocking wrote that he has found new work and is in the process of relocating out of San Francisco, California.


What is Hocking up to next?

What is Hocking up to next?

Hocking joined LucasArts in 2010 and his time at the company was spent working on multiple unannounced projects. Previously, Hocking was employed at Ubisoft, where he worked on the 2002 original Splinter Cell game and its 2005 sequel Chaos Theory, for which he served as the game’s creative director. The developer was also creative director on 2008’s Far Cry 2.

Hocking’s departure from LucasArts comes after of the company’s announcement of Star Wars 1313, a new third-person action game. The project has players taking on the role of a bounty hunter navigating a subterranean metropolis, Level 1313, beneath the surface of the planet Coruscant. Star Wars 1313 is a LucasArts collaboration, with Industrial Light & Magic, Lucasfilm Animation Ltd, and Skywalker Sound all contributing.

For more on Star Wars 1313, check out GameSpot’s previous coverage.

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LucasArts creative director quits” was posted by Eddie Makuch on Fri, 29 Jun 2012 05:04:22 -0700

Square Enix has highest salary average among game companies in Japan

Final Fantasy publishers hold top spot, above Sony, Nintendo, and Sega.

 

Japanese salary and income analysing company Nensyu Labo recently revealed a ranking chart for the companies with the highest average salary for its employees (via Andriasang). Square Enix is at the top, with employees getting an average salary of 21.68 million yen peryear ($273,057).


Square Enix sure pays their workers well.

Square Enix sure pays their workers well.

This was followed up by Sony, with an average of 9.23 million yen ($116,253), and Nintendo with 9.14 million yen ($115,117). Sega Sammy Corporation was placed fourth, with a salary average of 8.22 million yen, while Konami and Namco Bandai were just behind with 6.78 and 6.40 million, respectively.

The top ten list is just below:

1. Square Enix — 21.68 million
2. Sony — 9.23 million
3. Nintendo — 9.14 million
4. Sega Sammy Corporation — 8.22 million
5. Konami — 6.78 million
6. Namco Bandai Holdings — 6.4 million
7. Tecmo Koei Holdings — 6.15 million
8. Gala Japan — 5.91 million
9. Capcom — 5.71 million
10. Yuke’s Future Media Creators — 5.65 million

Nensyu Labo stated that it compiles its data based off public filings from each company.

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Square Enix has highest salary average among game companies in Japan” was posted by Jonathan Toyad on Thu, 28 Jun 2012 23:30:58 -0700

Game Masters: Tetsuya Mizuguchi

Our interview with the creative mind behind Rez, Lumines, and Child of Eden.

 

Get the full article at GameSpot


Game Masters: Tetsuya Mizuguchi” was posted by Laura Parker on Thu, 28 Jun 2012 22:23:58 -0700

ACMI Game Masters – Tetsuya Mizuguchi Interview

Rez and Child of Eden designer Tetsuya Mizuguchi speaks about how video games are the art of reflecting wants, desires and basic instincts in human beings.

 

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ACMI Game Masters – Tetsuya Mizuguchi Interview” was posted by edmondt on Thu, 28 Jun 2012 22:18:56 -0700

Activision books Call of Duty and China-related web domains

Call of Duty publisher grabs names like ‘blackopschina.com’, ‘bochina.com’, and other China-related domains.

 

Activision recently registered 17 domain names that are related to Call of Duty and China.


Part of Black Ops 2's story will be about a future war between the US and China.

Part of Black Ops 2’s story will be about a future war between the US and China.

According to a post on Fusible, the domains may be linked with the upcoming Call of Duty: Black Ops II’s storyline that involves a future cold war between the United States and China. Part of the list of domains, specifically ‘modernwarefarechina.com’, could also be a reference to an upcoming free-to-play Call of Duty title for China.

The full list of names bought by the company is as follows (via internet brand protector MarkMonitor): ‘anheixingdong.com’, ‘anheixingdong.net’, ‘blackopschina.com’, ‘blackopschina.net’, ‘blackopsonline.net’, ‘bochina.net’, ‘callofdutychina.com’, ‘callofdutychina.net’, ‘heisexingdong.com’, ‘heisexingdong.net’, ‘jueshengshike.com’, ‘jueshengshike.net’, ‘modernwarfarechina.com’, ‘modernwarfarechina.net’, ‘modernwarfareonline.net’, ‘xiandaizhanzheng.com’, ‘xiandaizhanzheng.net’.

The company discussed creating a microtransaction-based Call of Duty title made specifically for China via an investor conference call last year. For more information about the upcoming Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, check out GameSpot’s recent articles.

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Activision books Call of Duty and China-related web domains” was posted by Jonathan Toyad on Thu, 28 Jun 2012 22:17:48 -0700

Prototype 2 developer done for?

[UPDATE]: Activision confirms Radical Entertainment won’t be making any more games, but provides conflicting statements about whether the studio has been closed outright.

 

After more than two decades in business, Radical Entertainment is apparently no more. The Activision studio’s audio director, Rob Bridgett, posted the news on Twitter today, saying simply, “RIP Radical Entertainment 1991-2012.” A variety of developers in the area have also been reporting the closure and posting condolences on their Twitter accounts.


Prototype 2 may go down as Radical Entertainment's swan song.

Prototype 2 may go down as Radical Entertainment’s swan song.

Radical’s latest game was Prototype 2, which launched in April to chart-topping sales and a warm critical reception. The Prototype series was Radical’s first original intellectual property, created after more than a decade of games based on other people’s franchises, like Scarface: The World Is Yours, The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction, and The Simpsons Road Rage. The company’s official site boasts that its games have combined to sell more than 30 million copies.

Radical was an independent developer until Vivendi Universal Games acquired the studio in 2005. When Vivendi completed its merger with Activision in 2008, the Vancouver shop was one of a few non-Blizzard VU Games studios that survived the deal, with the remaining outfits being closed or sold off.

As of press time, Activision had not responded to GameSpot’s request for comment, and attempts to reach Radical were unsuccessful.

[UPDATE]: Activision has confirmed the news to Game Informer, with a representative saying, “Radical is a very talented studio and has been a great partner to Activision. Although we made a substantial investment in the Prototype IP, it did not find a broad commercial audience. Following an exploration of a wide range of options, it was determined that closing Radical Entertainment as a creative entity was the only option.”

Activision also provided a similar statement to GameSpot, but one that suggests the studio has not been outright closed. The publisher said, “Although we made a substantial investment in the Prototype IP, it did not find a broad commercial audience. Radical is a very talented team of developers, however, we have explored various options for the studio, including a potential sale of the business, and have made a difficult conclusion through the consultation process that the only remaining option is a significant reduction in staff. As such, some employees will remain working for Radical Entertainment supporting other existing Activision Publishing projects, but the studio will cease development of its own games going forward.”

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Prototype 2 developer done for?” was posted by Brendan Sinclair on Thu, 28 Jun 2012 12:52:06 -0700