News Update- (Week of 22/04/13)

Hello, all you nonsensical gamers, welcome to NSG’s new weekly article. Here you’ll find some of the biggest news topics from throughout the week.

Monday

This Monday we saw the arrival of some news from the boys over at Rockstar working on GTAV. Firstly, they’ve released a teaser that points to some sort of religious cult playing a role in the new game. It seems to be a not-so-subtle hint towards a Scientologist-type of organisation. Also, the word about town is that a fan in Mexico has spotted the set of a possible live-action commercial for the up-and-coming game. Several pictures are available for viewing below.

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On the other side of the world, Konami have confirmed the existence of the Metal Gear Legacy Collection after it was leaked all over the internet. Set to arrive in June 2013, it will include: Metal Gear Solid, Metal Gear Solid 2: HD Edition, Metal Gear Solid 3: HD Edition, Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker HD Edition, Metal Gear Solid: VR Missions and Metal Gear Solid 4: Trophy Edition.

Also, in a bit of British news, Injustice: Gods Among Us, has beaten Bioshock Infinite to the number one spot in the UK charts. I know, I know. How can such a compelling, story-focused and beloved franchise like Bioshock be beaten by a fighting game? Quite easily, especially when it’s competitor is a game based on many of the much-loved heroes of DC comics whose fan base is enormous in comparison and Bioshock Infinite has been out for some time now.

Sources: IGN, Edge

Tuesday

Lionhead studios, the British game developer famous for producing the Fable games, has appointed John Needham as its new CEO; filling the position left vacant  by Peter Molyneux’s departure. Needham was previously CEO of both Cryptic Studios (best known for the MMO’s City of Heroes and Champions Online) and Gazillion Entertainment (the company currently working on the Marvel Heroes MMO). Does this mean there might be a possible Fable MMO? Well, there are plenty of rumours flying around the internet that say so, but for now there is no word on their next move.

The next piece of news is one that I’m particularly fond of: Relic Entertainment has revealed it may be working with Games Workshop to create Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War 3. Since Relic’s previous owners, THQ, went bankrupt, SEGA swooped in and bought Relic but there has been no clear word on whether the Warhammer 40k licence has gone to SEGA. For now, all we have is the word and hopes of game director Quinn Duffy, who said: “There’s a strong possibility we’ll all be working together again on Dawn of War.”

Big news on the games-into-movies front, a Ratchet and Clank animated movie will be heading to theaters near you in early 2015. Production has already started and the film will will feature voice cast members from the game franchise. “ We’ve always thought Ratchet and Clank would be a fantastic all-ages movie and are thrilled our intergalactic heroes will finally get their chance to shine on the big screen,” said Ted Price, founder and CEO of Insomniac Games. And while I’m not a huge fan of the games, I’d have to agree with him on this one; it’s got potential. Even the trailer is quite promising:

Source: IGN, Eurogamer

Wednesday

Finally, Microsoft has confirmed that  it will be holding an event on Tuesday 21st May to show the world its next-generation Xbox. Although, an official blog post does say that the event will act as an initial taste of the future of the Xbox, and that it will save its larger lineup of games for E3. But with the continued focus on a home entertainment system and the Kinect (not to forget the ‘always online’ rumours) I find myself struggling to get interested in Microsoft’s next-gen console.

Xbox 720 crop-580-100

In Nintendo news, Nintendo President Satoru Iwata is set to become the new acting Nintendo of America CEO which will see him combine his new responsibilities with his current role. Iwata is replacing Tatsumi Kimishima, who will now take on the role of General Manager within parent company Nintendo Co. Ltd. Looks like Nintendo are having a good old shake-up and restructuring the company, most likely trying to improve their reputation and sales in the enormous North American market.

Nintendo have revealed their end-of-year financial results of its life-to-date sales for all of the current consoles. The Wii is drawing ever-closer to 100 million sales worldwide, with approximately 99,840,000 units sold at the end of March. The Wii U, which Nintendo had high hopes for, has managed 3.45 million- well below the expected 5.5 million. The best-selling console of all time, the Nintendo DS, currently sits around 153.87 million units sold. Whilst Nintendo are unhappy with the number of 3DS’s sold outside of Japan, they have still sold a handsome 31.09 million units. Whilst we at NSG aren’t the biggest fans of Nintendo, I have to respect them for what is quite an impressive achievement for any gaming platform.

Source: IGN, Microsoft

Thursday

The release date for Rayman Legends has been confirmed by Ubisoft. It’ll be available on PS3, Xbox 360 and Wii U from 30th August in the EU, and in the US from 3rd September. The game was originally supposed to be a Nintendo Wii U launch title, but after they annoyed the franchise’s fans by repeatedly pushing the game’s launch back, eventually it was announced the game would no-longer be a Nintendo-exclusive. While I’m no fan of the series, but surely this is good news for loyal Rayman followers.

A

Next piece of news from Thursday is that EA Partners is facing closure. EA Partners was the publisher’s system for supplying publishing services to independent developers. Known for their association with several well-known developers, including Crytek, Valve, and Epic Games. And don’t forget their connection to the controversy around 38 Studios and their game Kingdoms of Amalur Reckoning. What does this mean? Well, it does follow a number of changes by EA, including the replacement of EA CEO John Riccitiello, so I would think they are focusing on next-gen titles and trying to bring their dominance to the future of gaming.

Next up, more Nintendo news: Nintendo of America’s Senior Director of Corporate Communications, Charlie Scibetta, has stated that two events will be held at E3, but there won’t be the usual Nintendo press conference that traditionally takes place. This followed a statement from new Nintendo of America President Satoru Iwata where he clearly talked about his intentions concerning E3, “at E3 this year, we are not planning to launch new hardware, and our main activity at E3 will be to announce and have people experience our software”. They had previously confirmed that franchises like: Super Smash Bros., Mario and Mario Kart are to make an appearance at E3. And as they are some of fans’ most favoured games I think they’ll still make an impact on the expo.

Source: IGN, Gameinformer

Friday

Earlier this week, developer 2K Marin had revealed (through its blog) that we’ll finally get a glimpse of the long-awaited XCOM squad-based tactical shooter very soon. It was announced several years ago but seemed to have vanished from the radar; until now. The Bureau: XCOM Declassified is to be released on 360, PS3 and PC on 20th August in North America and on 23rd August in other territories. “The Bureau tells the story of XCOM’s mysterious beginnings,” said 2K Marin creative director Morgan Gray. “ We’re expanding the universe with a declassified tale of government conspiracy and heroic cover-ups told through third-person tactical gameplay.” With the success of the turn-based strategy XCOM title (which I very much enjoyed) it isn’t surprising that there is once again interest in this title. Check out the tense Live-action trailer below:

Now for a tonne of Xbox news:

Firstly, Microsoft originally planned to release a full version of the next Xbox with video game-playing capabilities, and a lesser entertainment-oriented version that didn’t provide gaming capabilities. However, there will be no entertainment-only version of the next Xbox. Although that doesn’t mean that Xbox isn’t focusing on entertainment (rather than gaming) in the next-gen.

Also, the rumoured ‘always online’ functionality of the next Xbox is correct. According to veteran tech blogger Paul Thurrott on Windows IT Pro “the next Xbox must be internet-connected to use.” Sigh. Just read our article to see how we feel about always online DRMs. Also, about the rumours that Windows 8 could be at the heart of the next Xbox, Thurrott says it is “based on the ‘Core’ (base) version of Windows 8. This suggests a common apps platform or at least one that is similar to that used by Windows 8.” Thurrott also confirmed that the next Xbox will include a Blu-Ray drive.

Now more on the future of Xbox Live: Rumour has it developers will be able to add achievements to Xbox games after its release, without the need to add DLC and the next Xbox will allow people to have more than the current cap of 100 friends, letting people follow one-another through websites like Twitter. And much like PS4, i it’ll have a share functionality that allows people to capture and share video through networks like Ustream and Facebook. When Sony announced this feature for the PS4 I was excited, but it feels like Xbox are just playing ‘copycat’.

Source: Edge, IGN

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One response to “News Update- (Week of 22/04/13)

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