News Around the Watercooler
April 5, 2009
News Around the Watercooler, Sorry no Cake….how about Boar?
Microsoft‘s UK head of Xbox Neil Thompson has stated that they see downloadble content and Xbox Live as a ‘complementary’ addition to boxed product, and not a real threat to the packaged goods business; stemming from recent reports suggesting that the games industry will become fully downloadable content driven. Thompson said:
“People often ask me, ‘Will Halo X be download only?’ But I don’t see the packaged goods business declining. What I do see is the growth of the download and digital content market – but it is complementary to boxed content and services. Wherever we can, we make sure retail is part of the Xbox Live ecosystem.”
Rumours are suggesting a potential Silent Hill game for the Wii. Silent Hill: Shattered Memories is said to feature some impressive AI and character choice mechanics that will result in theplayer constantly being analyzed by the game to determine when you’ll meet characters, what you’ll witness and a number of other factors. The Wii has already displayed it’s innate ability to analyze through games such as Wii Fit, however will this game live up to expectations. Sources say that more announcements are to be released on Monday so stay tuned.
Amongst the April Fools’ shenanigans came an announcement for a new Xbox Live game from The Maw creator, Twisted Pixel Games. ‘Splosion Man, a 2.5D action platformer “based around the simple concept of ‘sploshions and the ridiculousness that ensues”.
Well turns out, Twisted Pixel was kinda serious. They confirmed on Thursday that “By the Way, We Weren’t Kidding about ‘Splosion Man.”
So here comes this latest project about a titular hero “born of plasma and flame in an underground military lab.” He can explode on command and can reduce scientists to “chunks of ham and ribeyes.” It will feature a story mode and four-player co-op for online or local action. The release date is still to be confirmed.
Valve has announced the next planned class updates for their ever popular Team Fortress 2will be for the Sniper. Said to be the “largest TF2 update yet”, it will include “multiple new maps, and a bunch of gameplay tweaks.” Xbox 360 owners wondering where their updates are, be patient a bit longer as Valve has said they’re very close to completing the code, delayed by the memory restrictions presented by the game being on console.
It’s expected that one more update will come out prior to the Sniper receiving its new toys, and should include new content for all the classes.
The father of Fable, Peter Molyneux, has hinted that Fable 3 may not be an RPG at all. According to an interview conducted during the GDC, Molyneux suggested that he was aiming to take Fable in a new direction, possibly action or RPG or MMO or possibly a genre not even discovered yet. However as he typically does he’s been very…cryptic in his response to questions over his upcoming titles. However he has stated he’s working on a new game that has received “probably the best reaction [he's] ever seen…” and although he would like to show it off, the fact that Lionhead is owned by Microsoft means he can’t reveal more without the big thumbs up.
Remember when we spoke about World of Warcraft now having its own Mountain Dew line? Did you ever think “damn i wish i had some grub to go with that”, well thanks to Swanson now you can. Blizzard has partnered up with Swanson to give the world Hungry-Man Gamer Grub, the quick to heat TV-Dinner treat that’ll be hitting stores this Winter (or Summer if you’re in the States). Flavors range from Boar to Salmon to Lion to Rat, the variety is; unusual.
Ghostbusters: The Videogame won’t be on the PSP, says Atari. The rumour of the port to the Playstation Handheld resulted from the Entertainment Software Ratings Board having the platform listed after rating the Ghostbusters game, however Atari PRs have mentioned that this is just not the case and so the ESRB has since taken down the platform from its list. Atari has been quick to point out though that the game is still coming to every other platform under the sun.
You would recall back around Mid-Feb that Midway filed for bankruptcy, well it seems it’s starting to take its toll as around 50 designers responsible for the creation of Mortal Kombatare looking to leave for their own studio. The MK team is in discussion with a number of unnamed publishers in order to jump ship, with senior members of the group handling negotiations. It’s said the mass exodus from Midway was sparked when bonuses weren’t paidafter the successful sales of Mortal Kombat vs DC Universe. Either way it’s not looking good for the Mortal Kombat series as although the MK team isn’t necessarily contracted with Midway, the successful IPs won’t follow if the team goes with another studio.
Nintendo Wii’s MotionPlus peripheral makes the Wii controller work too good, says EA. According to the producer of EA’s Grand Slam Tennis game being developed for the console while being one of the first to make the peripheral;
“It truly is giving you that one-to-one control movement of your arm motion and then mapping it directly to that one-to-one movement of your character on screen.
At times it’s overly responsive. It had so much fidelity that at times we have limited that fidelity to make it a compelling experience and giving you full total control.”
Due for Release this week:
- Blood Bowl (Xbox 360, PC)
- Godfather 2 (Xbox 360, PS3, PC)
- Pro Evolution Soccer 2009 (Nintendo Wii)
- Championship Manager 2009 (PC)
- Damnation (Xbox 360, PS3)