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.
- Naughty Dog "Explored" Jak & Daxter Sequel Before The Last of Us: Naughty Dog co-president Evan Wells has told Game Informer that a next-gen Jak & Daxter title had already progressed beyond the hypothetical, before turning their attention to The Last of Us. Fingers crossed for a return.
- Square: Final Fantasy X HD Is A "Remaster," Not Remake: Those excited by the idea of a Final Fantasy X remake were sorely disappointed this week, when Square clarified that the upcoming PS3/Vita title Final Fantasy X HD is just that: an HD remaster.
- Volition's Durall: Preventing Used Games From Being Played A 'Fantastic' Idea: Whether second-hand game sales are harming the industry or not is still very much up for debate, but Volition's Jameson Durall is steadfastly against the practice. On the abolition of second-hand game sales: "Even though the consumers would be up in arms about it at first…they will grow to understand why and that it won’t kill them".
- GAME Confirms Head Office Layoffs: Selling games on the high-street is fast becoming a very risky business, with retail behemoth GAME forced to part with a number of high-profile staff in an effort to cut down on costs. Sad news indeed.
- Valve Bring A Little Bit Of Portal To Skyrim: In a wonderfully 'Valve' twist, the new Skyrim Creation Kit has been showcased by Gabe and co with the help of their seminal Portal franchise. And Nolan North. "Fall of the Space Core: Vol. 1" inserts a familiar AI core into the icy wastes of Skyrim, and can be downloaded over at the Steam Workshop.
- LittleBigPlanet Karting Is Happening: Following in the footsteps of some of gaming's finest, Sack Boy will be getting the chance to jump behind the wheel of a 125cc go-kart and tear it up on the track. Though details are scarce, it should be pretty easy to decide whether this one is for you or not.
- Kinect Star Wars Bundle & Game Hitting Shelves On April 3rd: The most important thing to take away from this is that Star Wars Kinect is getting a dance-off mode. If that seems physically repugnant to you, the rest is probably irrelevant.
- Sleeping Dogs Officially Confirmed, Trailered, Detailed & Dated: The rebranded Sleeping Dogs (formerly True Crime: Hong Kong) has been given a rather astonishing announcement trailer, and one that is sure to grab the attention of those that had given up hope of ever seeing it released. That day will come during the second half of 2012.
- New Double Fine Adventure Title On The Cards, Fan-Funded Through Kickstarter: It's been pretty hard to avoid this news if you're a gamer, but Schafer and the folks over at Double Fine have promised a fan-funded graphic adventure title, the likes of which we've been hungrily awaiting for years now. Reaching their Kickstarter target of $400,000 in just eight hours, it's now topping one and a half million. Outstanding work people.
- Activision: Call Of Duty 9 Will Boast "Meaningful Innovation": Perhaps as a response to the many criticisms being levelled at their beloved FPS franchise, Activision have vowed to innovate with their next iterative title. Aside from a ground-up rebuild, I can't really see where they can go that other games haven't gone already, but that's the cynic in me that I'm still learning to suppress. Call of Duty 9 will release at the end of this year. Obviously.
- Guinness World Records Reveals Best Videogame Ending Of All Time...: In a frankly astonishing lack of aptitude, Guinness World Records have labelled Black Ops as having the best videogame ending of all time. Ever. Apparently financial gain equates to artistic quality in their book.
- Lollipop Chainsaw Valentines Day Trailer: And I'll end the news this week with my favourite trailer of 2012 so far. I could not have cared less for this (despite being a relative fan of Suda51) a week ago. Now I'm all kinds of excited. But not in that way!
- Pineapple Smash Crew Review: A super slick shoot 'em up from the guys at Rich Make Game has kept Jon happy this week. A smashing soundtrack and sweet retro visuals back up the frenetic action.
- Kingdoms Of Amalur: Reckoning Review: A contender to the Skyrim throne? Not necessarily, largely because it inherits a very different RPG mould from Bethesda's Behemoth, though it is equally expansive. Unhampered by a weak script, the excellent combat and a huge (but not overwhelming) world make Amalur a game for those looking for their next fix of RPG goodness.
- Fortune Summoners Review: Razor-sharp wit and challenging gameplay aren't the two things you'd expect to find from this hyper-cutesy PC title, and yet Fortune Summoners manages to defy negative preconceptions by successfully displaying both throughout. Not perfect by any stretch, and as pointed out in the review, it might be worth taking a punt on the demo before you fork over your cash. There's a lot to love here though.
- A Unique Perspective | Uncharted: Drake’s Journal by Nolan North: Brendan takes a look at a rather intriguing little gem in the form of a book recounting the development of Uncharted from the perspective of video game golden boy Nolan North. Informal yet informative, fans of Naughty Dog's bestselling franchise owe it themselves to check it out.
- Xbox Live Indie Game Of The Week | Swords, Katanas & Killer Robots! The award this week goes to a fully-fledged FPS title named L.A.R.A, not least for the technical achievements Mad Micro have made. One of the first truly essential shooting experiences on the indie marketplace.
- Blast From The Past | PaRappa the Rapper: "Kick! Punch! It's all in the mind. If you wanna test me, I'm sure you'll find that the things I'll teach ya, is sure to beat ya. Nevertheless, you'll get a lesson from teacher now..." I think that adequately describes both the amount of time I've spent with that game, and my love for it. Matt agrees.
- Game Buzz | Double Fine & Kickstarter: Can Crowd Funding Revolutionise Games Retail As We Know it? With the phenomenal success of Double Fine's Kickstarter fund, we're left with the question of whether this could really be the start of power being put back in the hands of the consumer, or whether it's a flash in the pan. Matt explores the ins and outs of crowd funding.
- PWNCAST | Season 1: Episode 1 - Reckoning, Reboots and Retail: If you missed this today, shame on you! Matt, Jon and Carl sit down and talk about everything games. Listen to it at your desk, or download it for those long bus journeys to work. Either way, give it a listen and drop us some feedback.