The dedicated City Of Heroes players behind the Save Paragon City! campaign have detailed a three-stage plan to save their beloved MMO, which has provided more than eight and a half years of dynamic adventures. Titan Network administrator and campaign figurehead Tony Vasquez told us that their efforts are endorsed by a number of heavy-hitting celebs - including Neil Gaiman and John C. Wright - and that their "optimal outcome" would be Paragon Studios becoming a standalone company. Free from NCsoft and supported by fan contributions, or aligning with another publisher, the servers could therefore stay open.
Vasquez also put out an impassioned plea for support, appealing to the wider gaming audience to appreciate how heartbreaking it would be for nine years of camaraderie and friendship to end with the "flip of a switch."Click here to read more...
Portal co-creator Kim Swift is on a mission to prove that the current spate of hyper-realistic, ultraviolent games doesn't have to be the status quo; that games can be "fun for everybody" even though they're heavily stylised and non-violent. Her upcoming title, Quantum Conundrum, plans to fight back against this attitude, demonstrating to other developers that it's "super-easy" to make a good, non-violent game. And just as importantly, demonstrating to gamers that "there's room for other types of games out there."Click here to read more...
Vessel, the exceptional fluid-based puzzler from Strange Loop Games, is already one of 2012's most impressive titles - indie or no. However, excitingly, console players will be able to try out the exceptional experience for themselves before the end of the year.Click here to read more...
Ever since Rare shacked up with Microsoft and changed their focus to Kinect titles, plenty of pundits and gamers have expressed their discontent. In fact, we even nominated them as the studio we miss the most... despite them being alive and well! However, Phil Dunne, a 15-year Rare veteran and director at Starfire Studios, has spoken out to defend the controversial company - and reckons that we don't give them the credit and respect that they deserve. Full story after the jump.Click here to read more...
After THQ promised that the PS3 version of Saints Row: The Third would ship with exclusive PS3 content, we were all a little disappointed then it was nowhere to be found. However, we postulated that it could be added retroactively via DLC, and Sony has confirmed that this is indeed the case.
And, in fact, it's better than we'd hoped. PS3 owners will receive Saints Row 2 for free, which is bundled with the online pass in each new copy. You'll have 90 days to redeem, with the offer expiring in February 2012. Regardless of whether this was always the plan or a last-ditch attempt to save face, we love it when a plan comes together.
Yet another exclusive content promotion seems to have fallen through. After Battlefield 3 failed to provide PS3 players with a free copy of Battlefield 1943, it appears that Saints Row: The Third's promised PS3-exclusive content is nowhere to be found. Joystiq reports that the game is identical on all platforms; at odds with THQ's E3 pledge to provide a "multiplayer mode on the PS3" based around the franchise's "signature weapon." Which would have probably been a special Whored mode gametype using the giant purple sex aid, I suppose.
It's possible that this content could be delivered retrospectively via DLC. We'll have to wait and see. For now, though, I'd take any E3 promises with a massive handful of salt.
Codemasters were naturally keen to showcase the console versions of F1 2011 at their recent British press event, but they'd also brought the Vita version for us to try out. Since I'd already had a go over at E3 last month, I was keen to pin down exactly what we can expect from the handheld port. Codemasters' Andy Gray was on hand to answer some of my questions, which shed new light on the Vita version's functionality. They "just want to make a good F1 game" regardless of format - and with this admirable sentiment in mind, the handheld version will provide a refreshingly hardcore racing experience despite pressure from Sony to include absolutely every feature that the PS Vita has to offer.
See below for the brand new (and exclusive?) details, questions and answers - as well as new intel about the rear touch pad support and new bite-sized challenge modes.Click here to read more...
At the latest Codemasters press event, we had the opportunity to get hands-on with F1 2011 on consoles, interview several members of the dev team and try out the handheld versions. What we also got to do, though, was take a little look at the achievement list - which we've listed in full for your convenience below. Note that, since F1 2011 is still a work in progress, that this roster may change before the September release.
Bobby Kotick's Activision may be the current public enemy number one when it comes to developer treatment, but renowned FPS designer Stuart Black has spoken out against EA's policy towards its developers. Whilst he praises developers that treat their employees as valuable individuals (and claims that they make better games), he claims that the bigger publishers lack respect for their employees.
"[Developers such as Valve and Blizzard] build on their ideas and themes and the games they develop get richer. But those teams that chop and change on membership, they flounder. I'll pick out, just in broad terms, EA – I don't think there's a lot of respect for individuals on teams, the team members are building blocks that they can just mix and match…"
Stuart went on to explain that he's built a close-knit and passionate team to develop Bodycount, the upcoming spiritual successor to Black at Codemasters Guildford. We're excited to see if they deliver a triple-A product as well as Black's trademark ultraviolence. [The Guardian]
'Celebrity' industry analyst Michael Pachter has predicted that we've our last platform exclusive from the big publishers. Whilst first-party developers (such as Media Molecule and Rare) will still continue to create exclusive games as per their contracts, Pachter believes that publishers simply won't cut their profits in half by releasing AAA titles as system-specific games.
"I don't think you're going to see Ubisoft or Take-Two or Activision do an Xbox 360 or PS3 exclusive ever again because the install base of the two consoles is just too big to ignore. They'd be giving up way too much unless Microsoft is willing to pay up."
Pachter also predicts that Microsoft will be the worst off from the situation; a situation our very own Matt Gardner has already foreseen.
"I don't think Microsoft is willing to pay up what it's going to take to ignore that whole PS3 crowd."
He's also stated that we can expect to see Splinter Cell Conviction on the PS3 within the year. [Gametrailers Pach Attack via Gamerzines]
Red Dead Redemption, Rockstar's upcoming Western, has been rated M due to excessive swearing, violence and shockingly adult themes. Drugdealing, mutilated corpses and plenty of gore will certainly help shift a few copies thanks to its simple shock value.
“Language such as ‘f**k,’ ‘c*nt,’ and ’sh*t’ can be heard in the dialogue. In one sequence, a bloodied and mutilated corpse can be seen hanging from the rafters of a barn.”- ESRB
It'll be interesting to see whether this overtly controversial and mature content actually makes for a better game rather than a cynical way of netting shock sales. Yeehaw, motherf**kers! [VG247]
Enslaved, Ninja Theory's postapocalyptic current project, is now being teased by a new countdown site. Details are currently very sparse, but apparently a trailer will be incoming... in just under a fortnight.
Enslaved is shaping up to be a rich, futuristic action experience that's based on a classic Chinese legend. We'll keep you up to date with the latest developments as we receive them.
Want to weigh in on EA's developer treatment? Fancy punditing on Pachter? Drop us a line in the comments!
Today's news looks at the PS3 and Xbox 360 as they battle it out to answer which console provides the best exclusives. In other news, Microsoft claim they're selling more consoles in Europe than Sony, despite what Sony may say, and The God of War Collection is confirmed to be region-free.
GoGamingGiant has recently taken it upon themselves to definitively state what’s better: PS3 exclusives or Xbox 360 exclusives? To find this out they took the scores of each exclusive from both consoles, using IGN, and took an average, the overall result apparently deciding who has the better exclusives. Additionally, games with a score below 7.5 don’t qualify, seemingly not being good enough to make the cut, and games on XBLA and the PlayStation Network will not count.
After adding up the scores for each Xbox 360 exclusive, including the likes Gears of War, Banjo Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts, and Fable 2, the 360 has an exclusive average of 8.47. The PlayStation average ended up at 9.24, based on games such as Infamous, Metal Gear Solid 4, and Little Big Planet. GoGamingGiant conclude by stating “on average PlayStation 3 exclusives are higher rated than Xbox 360 exclusives.” Seems a bit unfair when IGN is exclusively used as their basis to judge these games, rather than an aggregate result on MetaCritic. Also, the 360 has a lot more exclusives, with a lot of these coming from third-parties, so of course the average would be lower. [GoGamingGiant]
Back at GamesCom Sony announced they had sold 10 million units in Europe, only days after Microsoft revealed their total sits at 9 million. Microsoft’s Chris Lewis disputes this, claiming the Xbox 360 still has the lead over the PS3. “We’re confident we are actually around a million units ahead” said Lewis, following the announcement of new prices for the Xbox 360 Arcade, and Elite packs.
Lewis claimed Microsoft count their installed base figure differently from Sony. “We count the number of units in the hands of consumers. We are committed to continuing that momentum – not only in places like the UK, France and Germany. Continued growth in all parts of Europe is integral to winning [against PS3] overall.” [MCVUK]
The God of War Collection should be hitting North America this Christmas, while unlucky Europeans are forced as usual to wait a little bit longer to get their hands on the game. It may come as a relief to some that Sony has announced The God of War Collection will be region-free, meaning anyone can play the game the day it’s released in America. If your patient enough and don’t wish to import a copy, it will be officially released in Europe at the start of 2010. [VG247]