Friday, June 18, 2010

Playstation Plus coming June 29th

You can stop holding your breath the Playstation Network still holds its roots in the free realm. Playstation Plus is like something that you can stack on top of the Playstation Network to make it the service that it was always meant to be. Again, this is not saying that your PSN experience will not be everything it once was, this is saying that those willing to pay will be greatly rewarded.

With a pay service comes a hefty amount of exclusive offers and features. Here is what Playstation Plus has to offer:
  • discounts on randomly selected DLC (much like Microsoft's Deal of the Week)
  • free DLC (that cost's money for non-subscribers)
  • exclusive early access to demos and betas
  • the digital Qore magazine - free
  • free full game trials for any game up to one hour before you have to make a purchasing decision
  • auto downloading (which downloads patches, select demos and game videos, etc. all without ever having to think about it
To me it seems as though Playstation's service is worth the asking price because it brings a lot of the oft requested features (that Xbox already has). Perhaps cross game invites and party chat will become Playstation Plus features, should they ever come down the pipe.

Playstation Plus is 50 dollars a year and if you purchase a subscription at the outset you get 15 months for the same price. Seperate three month packs are available for 18 dollars.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Portal studio is still alive in 2011

The work of Gabe Newell is precise, well thought out, and yet always somewhat of a surprise. From the creation of two multiplayer giants in the Left 4 Dead series, and the inception of Gordon Freeman into almost every videogame player's vernacular, we have the little video game engine that could in Portal. In a game that was undershadowed originally in the Half-Life 2/Team Fortress/Portal boxset of games, the crew at Valve will be bringing back the Companion Cube and GLaDOS back for more puzzles and mind numbing fun as you attempt to help navigate through another assuredly short and sweet game from the Valve team.

What gives fans such a huge attachment to Portal was the futuristic and yet heartfelt attachment to various characters, and Chelle and GLaDOS will both be back for a featured game that will be showcased on PC,Xbox 360, and PS3. The game will launch at some point in 2011, and should help to bring puzzle gaming back to a heightened level of enjoyment. Although no gameplay was shown for the Portal 2 story, we do know the game will take itself on as a story hundreds of years after the original.

Metroid: The Other M premiere at E3

After three years of no sunlight for the Metroid series, and on a day when various games like Kid Icarus and Donkey Kong found their way back into our minds, Samus and her untitled ship will travel back into our hearts. The Other M, showcased with great graphics and a knack for edge of your seat Sci-Fi battles, will be launched into our hands on August 31st of this year.

What once again will amaze all of those in love with the Metroid style of gaming is how Nintendo continues to impress with the fresh and crisp graphical style that they continue to employ, working well with the systems graphical restrictions. The gameplay trailer even consists of some points of sidescrolling gaming that almost look as of those from the original Nintendo console.

The Space Pirates will continue to create a dutiful mission for Samus, as those who have been firmly linked to the game, such as Producer Yoshio Sakamoto have stated that although the game has been taking longer than originally expected to come out, that the crowd will be very pleased in what he been formed. From the trailer that was shown at E3 earlier today, it is going to be hard to deny that statement.

Zelda Skyward Sword Revealed; Coming in 2011

Miyamoto says that this game will be the turning point in Zelda's history and though I don't know about that, what he had to show was definitely attention grabbing.

You use the Wiimote as your sword and the nun-chuck as your shield. You hold the sword straight up to charge and slash to fire sword beams. Miyamoto wanted to make the game as simple and natural as possible.

To aim your slingshot and bow you just move the Wiimote around - no need to point it at the screen. To fire the bow you just pull back the nun-chuck and release to fire.

You can throw and roll bombs with the Wiimote with a overhand swipe and and underhand roll respectively.

There is more expansive scenery and it looks great.

The new beetle flies around using your remote to guide it. It picks up items and can also be used to place bombs where Link can't get.

The last new item is the whip and can be used to cut grass and grab items with the flick of your wrist. It always works exceptionally well at taking out a lot of bats at once.

It looks fantastic but we have to wait until 2011 to see just how good it will be.

Update: Trailer!

Nintendo 3DS Revealed Along with Kid Icarus Uprising (IN 3D!)

The top screen is a 3.5 inch widescreen display and the bottom screen is the standard touch-screen. The hardware is better: there is a new slide pad (similar to a joystick) as well as a motion and gyro sensor.

There will be 3D movies and though no specific on those were given Nintendo stated that they would be showing trailers (in 3D) on the show floor.

It also comes with a camera that can take 3D pictures. Now that is special.

But like they said, "What you care about is the games," and what they had to show was a trailer for Kid Icarus Uprising. My prowess does not include the wonders of Kid Icarus but I know that this excites me.

Disney Epic Mickey

Disney Epic Mickey

Warren Spector is excited for Disney Epic Mickey and he wants you to be excited as well. He is doing a good job.

This holiday we will be visiting the Wasteland in three different kinds of areas:

  1. Ventureland is a quest zone where you solve puzzles, buy tools and supplies, and use the paint and paint thinner mechanic. You have to dynamically change the world here to save it. Everyone will have a different experience and what you choose to do with this world will have various different rewards and consequences. To me, this sounds different for a Wii game.
  2. Action Zones were not gone into a lot but it seems that, and this is just going by the name, this is where you (Mickey!!!!) will fight the majority of your enemies.
  3. The travel zones are where you travel to a classic Mickey cartoon. The game becomes a 2-D side-scroller here.
Just going on what was shown at the Nintendo briefing this game looks fantastic. Disney is bringing the games this year. With Split/Second already doing well on the market Disney Epic Mickey looks to continue its stride of great games.

New Donkey Kong Country Returns Revealed and coming Winter 2010

I can remember a time where all I cared about was playing Donkey Kong Country on the Nintendo 64. As I did not have a 64 myself I was always at a different friend's house at various different stages of the game. I'm not even sure I ever completed the game.

I remember working my way through the jungle, through rickey mine shafts and exploding Donkey Kong from barrel to barrel always looking for all of the secrets in a level.

Now that you are there with me: Donkey Kong Country Returns this holiday.

Is your sense tingling? New looks at a Spider-Man game

Within the E3 2010 breakdown, there was more light shed upon one of the games that has intrigued me for a few months coming, and that was the work being done by Activision and developed by Beenox to create a Spider-Man game that combined 4 Spidey worlds in Spider-Man: Shattered Dimensions. Within this Spidey game, the Tablet of Chaos needs to be retrieved in various pieces from the bosses throughout the game.

Throughout the game, there are varieties of boss battles that will challenge your webbed fellow, but some of the boss battles will actually fulfill the role of a first person contact, where you can get up close and personal and defend yourself. This is a huge twist to a popular beat em up superhero game, and could be very welcome in what some consider a tried and not always true genre.

To see "Amazing Spider-Man"is something to be expected, but one of the first tidbits of info we did receive with video information is the arrival of the world of 2099 Spidey, War, and also an Unknown World yet to be released. The gameplay style of 2099 adds basejumping and very high flying building maneuvers while chasing Hobgoblin. The coolest inception could be a new vision mode, allowing various looks to gain advantage in various boss chases. The look of 2099 is incredibly futuristic and puts Spidey in a dark red and black based suit.

This game has been one with little fanfare and masked in intrigue for awhile, so here is to hoping we get more out of Activision on this game soon. If you'd like to watch the video for this game in action, check out the link.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Alive and Kickin': A Michael Jackson game!

I will be the first to admit as a small child, I unabashedly loved everything that Michael Jackson had created. The dance moves that he could do left me in wonder, and when Michael Jackson passed away as of last year, the nation mourned the performer. From various articles posted, we have learned today at E3, that Michael Jackson's likeness will be added to a game shortly for all platforms in a "karaoke" style video game, where you gain points by choreographing his dance moves.

Within the game, there is hinting of dance as well as singing portions of the game, allowing you to put on your shiniest white shoes and gloves and mimic the great pop legend, either with family or friends, or all by your guilty lonesome. For a conference centered this year on mostly action games and long awaited sequels, this game could be a very heartwarming and new experience.

Ubisoft hopes to strike big and I believe that this is one game that will sell almost as well as a Guitar Hero type installment. The game is scheduled for a holiday release as of this year, that could possibly coincide with an album of unreleased Michael Jackson work.

Medal Of Honor

The game takes place in War-Torn Afghanistan.
EA did a LIVE 24-player software demo of a mode called Team Assault where you fight to reach points on maps based on real locales.

The gameplay feels like BFBC2 but the points and rewards are a little more in your face ala Modern Warfare 2.

The sound, look and general feel of the game all scream DICE and some of the sounds even sound like they were pulled directly from Bad Company 2.

One word: FANTASTIC.

The beta goes live June 21st and goes live even earlier for Gun Club members on June 17th.

There will be no question of my love for this game, how about you?

Expect me to be there with on October 12 2010. Expect to see me online this Thursday June 17th.

Here is the multiplayer trailer:

BulletStorm Releases 2.22.2010

There are arcade style points while playing. They are rewarded for doing anything with style or doing pretty much anything at all. A lot of the points come along with descriptions that are often descriptive, snarky, or both.

You get points for kicking guys off cliffs, for whipping guys into the air (and exploding barrels next to them), and for finding out the way to kill difficult enemies.

There are very cheesy lines and slow motion kills but it all adds to the aesthetic which simply just seems to be, to have fun.

Look for more on BulletStorm later on.

Star Wars: The Old Republic @ E3

It was announced that every player will have their own ship. Your ship will define your journey through the galaxy.

No price, date, or really anything at all was announced.

EA Gun Club is a Rewards program

EA Gun Club features rewards, weapon unlocks and early demo access.

You can access the Medal of Honor demo early, this Thursday June 17th, by going to

That is as soon as the link works.

Bad Company 2: Vietnam Coming Winter 2010

An expansion pack for Bad Company 2 is coming in Winter 2010 - Battlefield Bad Company 2: Vietnam.

They only showed a teaser but I am stoked.

Update: The Battlefield Blog posted more details including the E3 teaser:

The expansion pack contains 4 new maps in a Vietnam setting, new achievements, awards, etc. I thought that this was going to be some campaign missions but this will do just fine.

[As with everything today, pictures are pulled from Joystiq.]

ESPN Live and On Demand is FREE to Gold Members

This is also gesture and voice command based with Kinect.

There are trivia a live polls through games and you can also look at highlights and scores without leaving the game you are watching.

Again free for gold members and redefining the one box experience.

Halo: Reach has space battles

Update: Trailer!!!

The only thing that you need to know is that Halo: Reach has space battles.

Oh yeah and the old Covie drop ships are back.

Gears of War 3 Trailer Shows Off Lambent Locust

Cliff Blezinski and friends showed off a live 4-player co-op demonstration of Gears of War 3.

The gameplay demo showed us being able to tag meat shields with grenades and being able to shove them at enemies. The space that the firefight was taking place also looked a tad bit more wide open than in previous Gears games.

The best part was the lambent Beserker touting all kinds of tentacles and looking more intimidating than ever.

The hammer of dawn looks bigger and more badass but proved to be relatively ineffective on the lambent Beserker.

Cliff also revealed that a new mode called, 'Beast,' would be revealed later on during E3.

Fable 3 Ships October 26

Update: The Fable III E3 Trailer:

And that is all I can tell you right now. No mention of Kinect support for Fable III was mentioned and the trailer is not up yet so... look a pretty picture.

Better than the previous two boxes. Photo courtesy of Joystiq.

Additional Kinect Information

The most important thing to note is that the Kinect has not officially been given a price though the rumor is $150. As we all know Kinect needs to be bundled with a console and that the bundle needs to be reasonably priced. I do not see the bundle coming in at under $300 so Microsoft's ability to undercut Nintendo might be in vain. Speculation aside these are a few other things that we know about Natal Kinect.

There will be a new gesture based Kinect only menu also known as the Kinect Hub.

From here you can get to your music, your movies (which are also gesture controlled), and Video Kinect - a video chat function.

Video Kinect looks to have Bing integration where you can see the weather where you are located and where your friend is located. You can also watch movies together while being able to see each other.

The Kinect also tracks where you move so you are always in the viewfinder.

Video Kinect is coming to Live Messenger on the PC as well so who knows if you will be able to Kinect connect your Kinect (oh jeez) to the computer.

Also mentioned, but already known, is that Xbox Live will be coming to Window Phone 7.

Hideo Kojima Debuts Metal Gear Solid Rising Footage @ E3

 The game looks to have at least partially destructible environments. You can also slice your enemies eight ways till Sunday.

At the end of the video Raiden was shown slicing a watermelon. This looks like and intensely awesome game mechanic.

The trailer ended with the tagline, "The blade is in your hands."

Image Source: DeviantArt

Kinect Launching November 4 w/ 15 Launch Titles

A few of those titles will be:

  • Kinectimals
  • EA Sports Active 2.0
  • Kinect Sports
  • Your Shape
  • Biggest Loser
  • Kinect Joyride
  • Kinect Adventures
All the Kinect games are full motion based and nothing that combines a controller and Kinect was mentioned - not even Fable III. Your Shape looked like the best of all the games experiences.

The New Xbox 360 with Built-In 250GB HD and WiFi Ships this Week

Hell-o fingerprints.
Update: A Joystiq unboxing.

What else is there to say about the New 360? Well it is the same price, $299.

As already mentioned it has a built in 250GB HD and Wireless N built-in. Welcome to the party Xbox.

I have to say that I absolutely love it.

From photos of the back it looks to have 3 USB slots (on the back alone) presumably because Kinect will always be plugged in.

[Photos from Joystiq]

The Force Unleashed 2 Teaser Trailer... Unleashed


I was a fan of the first game and I am eager to play more.

Scott Pilgrim E3 Gameplay Trailer

I honestly do not know what else to say about this other than, "You should be watching this right now."

Quite amazing, no?

Initial KINECT games and partnerships announced

We all very clearly remember Nintendogs and Wii Sports, don't we? How about Playstation's upcoming EyePet? Well - and brace yourselves for this one - one of the first games announced by Microsoft for the KINECT AI camera is Kinectimals.

Kinectimals lets you play with 20 different pets including lions, tigers and cheetahs. Should it more appropriately Kinectikitty? Anyway this is not a product for those of us reading this and should occupy a five-year-old's time for at least a few minutes that is until they play...

...Kinect Sports. Oh come on! We just want these kids to just upgrade from their Wii and we can't do them any more credit than this? Guess not.

We can at least give these kids, the free-to-play (if that model still exists), Joyride back, right? Yes we can. The game has made the leap forward to become entirely gesture based and will likely be a launch game for Kinect.

Licenses that are infinitely more exciting than any off this: priceless. I mean Disney and LucasArts have showed their, perhaps exclusive, support for Microsoft's full body moving camera.

I just cannot wait to force push enemies using MY HAND.

[VIA USA Today]

Project Natal is aptly named KINECT

So there it is; looking relatively similar to the Natal prototype pictures, Kinect for Xbox 360 has officially been unveiled. This came a few short hours after both USA Today and an advertisement on an Italian website leaked the new slim 360 and the Kinect branding of Project Natal.

I like the name but I think, like everything else, people will have a problem with it. It fits what the camera is supposed to do - kinect connect people.

[Photos and articles pulled from Futurestiq Joystiq]