Trawling through blogs can be time consuming, so we thought we’d make it even easier by rounding up the hottest headlines, ripe reviews and fantastic features each week in a handy, low-fat look at the previous seven days.
- Microsoft: "Nothing Is Bigger Than Halo" In Terms Of Platform Exclusives: Xbox's global marketing director Steve Beinner has suggested that Halo's return to store shelves will also herald the return of Master Chief to the top gaming's elite leagues. "If you look at platform exclusives, nothing is bigger than Halo."
- Angry Mass Effect 3 Fans Petition For New Ending... Bioware are no strangers to controversy. Neither are they unfamiliar with the angry cries of dissatisfied fans. It shouldn't have come as any surprise then, that some took issue with Mass Effect 3's ending. What might have come as a shock is the fifty-two-and-a-half thousand strong petition for a major change to Bioware's given climax to Commander Shepard's story. Casey Hudson has since responded to the concerns raised.
- Riccitiello: "Other Retailers Will Absorb The Business" If GAME Goes Under: EA's John Riccitiello has suggested that the loss of GAME from the high street won't adversely affect his company in any significant manner, as other retailers will step in to fill the gap. Looks like you're on your own, GAME.
- Double Fine Adventure Kickstarter project Closes On Over $3.3 Million: Schafer and co must have been quietly confident that they'd wring $400,000 out of their dedicated fanbase (myself included) for a return to the genre that made him a (gaming) household name, but no one could have predicted the explosion of enthusiasm for the project. Double Fine's project budget is now $3.3 million better off. Now lets cross our fingers and wait to see if the game is any good...
- Report: BBC iPlayer Launches Next Week On Xbox 360? Sources have suggested that this coming week will see the release of the BBC's iPlayer app on Microsoft's Xbox dashboard, after an alleged resolution of arguments over pricing.
- Molyneux: Industry Wasn't Ready For Milo: Having announced his resignation from Lionhead Studios only days ago, Molyneux has decided to shake things up a little more by suggesting that Kinect title Milo was never released due to the industry's inability to cope with an experience"as emotionally connecting" as that which Milo offered. I'm a Molyneux fan, but on this issue, he should keep his trap shut.
- Capcom Exec: Tokens Will Replace Discs In Five Years: Capcom's Christian Svensson has suggested that while retail games will still very much be a part of the gaming indutry's future, discs may well be replaced by tokens with which to obtain games digitally. With GAME's woes still playing very much on everyone's minds, some might be reassured that publishers (EA apparently excluded) are willing to support high-street retailers.
- Wasteland 2 Kickstarter Campaign Reaches Target In 48 Hours: In another feel-good Kickstarter-related story, developers inXile have reached their $900,000 target with which they plan to create a sequel to classic Interplay RPG Wasteland. Is Kickstarter fast becoming a viable alternative to traditional publishing avenues for indie devs? On this evidence, it may well be the case.
- Microsoft & Turn 10 Hiring For The "Next Generation": Further cementing rumours of a next-gen Xbox reveal in 2012 are a couple of job listings from both Microsoft and Forza developer Turn 10, in which they ask for staff to work on the 'Next Generation' of games. This is despite a Microsoft PR's insistence that "no new Xbox hardware will be shown" at this year's E3.
- Diablo 3 Digital Pre-Orders Go Live, Release Date Confirmed: The day many feared would never come has finally arrived. Diablo 3 has been given a release date and is now available for pre-order. If you're willing to part with £45 for Blizzard's long-awaited sequel to the classic clickathon, then Diablo 3 will be available to play from May 15th.
- Ubisoft's Rocksmith To Release In UK This September: Almost a year after its US release, (and flying in the face of an ongoing dispute over the title) Rocksmith will be hitting UK shores to bring noise to the masses. Compatible with almost any real guitar, but available in bundle form with an Epiphone beginner's model, Rocksmith aims to teach anyone how to play (or improve on their) guitar. I'd best get that intonation problem ironed out then...
- Report: SEGA Finished Shenmue 1 & 2 HD A Year Ago: According to an industry source, SEGA have been sitting on a completed HD build of not just Shenmue, but its sequel too for an entire year now. Quite why is anyone's guess, but the report suggests that SEGA are still deliberating over the future of the Shenmue franchise.
- Portal Takes Best Game Award At BAFTAS, Results In Full: This year's BAFTAS saw some of the industry's biggest hitters battling it out for the coveted Best Game award, but it was Valve's Portal 2 that took the honours on the night. Click the link for the complete list.
- F1 2012 Announced For September, Trailered: In case you hadn't noticed, the first Formula 1 race of the season hit the streets of Melbourne this weekend. To celebrate, Codemasters have revealed that the 2012 iteration of their fully-licensed franchise will be hitting stores this September.
- Metal Gear Solid 3D: Snake Eater Review: Jon finally gets his hand on the finished build of Konami's classic stealth title, and finds that while its fundamental features still hold up today, the gameplay doesn't quite translate to the smaller screen and awkward Circle Pad Pro controls.
- Mass Effect 3 Review: Matt takes on the big review of the week with Mass Effect 3. Is the ending as unsatisfying as we've been led to believe? Sadly, yes. But the rest of the game more than delivers on its promise of wrapping things up with a bang.
- BIT.TRIP SAGA Review: The BIT.TRIP series finds a new home on the 3DS, and makes itself comfortable on Nintendo's newest handheld. Fluid controls, beautiful visuals and an awesome soundtrack ensure that you'll get plenty of bang for your buck. Even if the 3D effects are a little nauseating.
- Defenders Of Ardania Review: Tower defence titles are a dime a dozen these days, so does Defenders of Ardania do enough to make itself stand out from the crowd. Not quite, says Jon, who does praise its nuanced and hectic gameplay, but condemns its lack of variety. Still a solid 7 out of 10.
- I Am Alive Review:I Am Alive makes its way out of development hell and into your living room to recreate the experience. This is a raw and unflinching survival simulator that has proven divisive to say the least. Jon though, wholeheartedly recommends it to those looking for something a little different, while warning those searching for an uplifting slice of Uncharted-style action away.
- Armored Core V Hands-On Preview: Matt takes an early look at From Software's latest Mech shooter Armoured Core V. With integrated multiplayer functionality providing a large part of the title's selling point, stomping side-by-side with a buddy in a highly customisable iron giant of your very own looks like it's going to prove a lot of fun.
- Jet Set Radio HD Hands-On Preview: Everyone's favourite roller-blade/spray-paint hybrid title is making a return to current gen consoles in glorious high definition, and Matt assures us that it's every bit as good as we remember. Not content to simply churn out the original with slightly sharper character models, SEGA have lovingly crafted the experience to fit beautifully on current home consoles.
- Sonic 4: Episode 2 Hands-On Preview: Much like Valve before them, Sonic Team don't quite seem to have embraced the shorter development cycle inherent in episodic titles. That said, it seems to have been for good reason, with the developer taking all the criticisms levelled at their original attempt at rebooting the traditional 2D Sonic title on board, and improving them significantly. Colour me naively hopeful.
- Confrontation Hands-On Preview: Cyanide Studio aim to bring little-known miniature skirmish game Confrontation to the personal computer in the form of a standard RTS. At least that's what it appears to be at first glance. Jon however, got the chance to delve a little deeper and get hands on with the slick RPG elements that they hope will elevate it above the rest of the crowd.
- PWNCAST | Season 1: Episode 6 – Massively Effective Spoilers Pt. 1: And finally, the Dealspwn lads sit down to discuss Bioware's final entry in Commander Shepard's sci-fi trilogy in this week's Pwncast. Spoilers abound, but if you want in on the debate, give it a listen and leave a comment in the box below.