Category Archives: Video Games

Hulk Smash into Games

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It’s not an official Summer Blockbuster until there’s a game attached. The folks at Sega have been doing the full court press on their upcoming The Incredible Hulk Video Game.  The game features key moments from the film, as well as additional plotlines and characters from the character’s rich comic-book universe. Players smash through New York City, battling gigantic enemies amidst soaring skyscrapers in a massive open world.  If the game sticks to the formula of the last Hulk game it’ll be a hit.  Sega launched the official game website today – http://incrediblehulkthegame.com. I don’t like it, it’s overproduced and way too much flash. But I’m really looking forward to playing this game. In addition to being a movie tie in, the game will have a fully destructible world, you’ll be able to "hulk out" and whip some candy asses in a fully realized sandbox environment.  What’s not to love? The game hits the street this June.

Dark Sector is in Stores

The wait is over! D3PA has shipped their highly anticipated action-thriller Dark Sector to retail stores all across North America for the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation3. Utilizing the Evolution Engine, proprietary next-gen technology developed by Digital Extremes, Dark Sector is designed exclusively for next-generation gaming. The game thrusts players into the role of Hayden Tenno, an elite black-ops agent sent on a dangerous mission into a decaying Eastern European city that hides a deadly Cold War secret. Attacked by an unknown enemy, he awakens to find part of his body altered by an infection that has granted him inhuman abilities; now he must learn to evolve along with his powers, to survive and to become a hero. Dark Sector is available for the suggested retail price of $59.95.

We fight the Nazi’s there So they won’t come here.

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Today Ubisoft, one of the world’s largest video game publishers, announced that Silent Hunter®: Wolves of the Pacific U-Boat Missions, an add-on to the critically acclaimed Silent Hunter: Wolves of the Pacific submarine simulation, is available for direct download from Ubi.com and direct2drive.com. Developed by Ubisoft Romania, the add-on will allow players to prowl the Pacific Theater during WWII as the captain of a German submarine. U-Boat Missions offers players a variety of new features and content including an entirely fresh and innovative strategic element, new playable submarines, an improved navigation map, improved upgrade system, and more. Silent Hunter: Wolves of the Pacific U-Boat Missions is rated “T” for Teen and has an MSRP of $9.95.

Key Features:
•       German Campaign in the Indian Ocean: The new campaign spans from July 1943 until end of war, in May 1945. Players will operate from such far-off Japanese naval bases as Penang, Singapore, Jakarta and Surabaya.
•       Strategic Warfare: As the player rises in rank and experience he gains access to new strategic resources, such as recon aircraft that track down enemy shipping and even battle groups that can help wipe out superior enemy forces.
•       New Playable Submarines: Take to the seas in the long-range Type IX-D2 U-boat and the revolutionary Walther propulsion type XVIII U-boat. Learn the strengths and weaknesses of these boats and how you can overcome even elite, late-war Allied destroyers with high-speed hit-and-run attacks.
•       Heroes: Based on actual historical figures, new crewmembers add a number of special abilities that can change the fate of battle and save the ship when the time is right, as well as adding historical color to the game.

Guitar Hero: On Tour on DS Official

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It’s been rumored for a few weeks now and the fine folks at Joystiq had the scoopage first. But I generally like to wait for official confirmations before posting here at Eclipse. That official word came down a couple of days ago. When I first saw the image, I thought and still do think this thing looks incredibly goofy and wonder how it’ll work. The whole point and appeal of Guitar Hero is, you know playing the guitar. I don’t see how you get that feeling with And they are going to expand on that incredibly crappy battle mode. Hey Activision the game is called Guitar Hero, not Battle Hero. Kill that stupid mode already! The gameplay mechanics sound like it’ll be incredibly difficult trying to use the shoulder buttons and stylist at the same time. But I love the idea of being able to take my obsession anywhere with me. Here’s the official press release. I wonder if Gibson will sue them over this as well.

For the first time, handheld gamers will have the freedom to unleash their inner rock star anywhere, anytime with Activision, Inc.’s (Nasdaq: ATVI) upcoming Guitar Hero®: On Tour for Nintendo DS™. The game will deliver a unique Guitar Hero® experience by challenging handheld gamers to rock out and prove their shredding skills on the most diverse set list of master tracks ever offered in a Guitar Hero game, including classic rock, alternative and pop favorites such as Nirvana, OK Go and No Doubt. The game will be packaged with a revolutionary Guitar Hero™ Guitar Grip™ peripheral that fits snugly into the DS and a unique Guitar Hero pick-stylus that brings a new dimension to handheld gaming and the core gameplay that defines Guitar Hero. Guitar Hero: On Tour has been designed specifically for the DS platform and will offer the DS audience an all-new compelling music experience. “We are continuing to introduce new and exciting ways to bring music to audiences with Guitar Hero,” said Dusty Welch, head of publishing for Activision/RedOctane. “The Guitar Hero Guitar Grip redefines how games can be played on handheld systems and the integration of the microphone and touch screen gameplay on the DS, further illustrates Guitar Hero’s leadership in delivering the most unique and creative quality hardware and software on the market.”

“We’re designing Guitar Hero: On Tour from the ground up to take full advantage of the DS platform by integrating signature gameplay with fresh new content and DS specific features,” said Karthik Bala, CEO of Vicarious Visions. “We’ve taken all of our learnings on the DS platform to date and pushed it to the limits to create a truly innovative Guitar Hero experience.” Guitar Hero: On Tour continues to build on the franchise’s signature easy-to-play, yet difficult to master addictive gameplay, and now lets players take their experience on the road wherever they go. Players use the Guitar Hero pick-stylus on the touch screen to strum their favorite tunes and create their rock ‘n’ roll legacy in career mode. Fans can also join together to play co-op mode using a local wireless network, or battle each other in a Guitar Duel using new Battle Items unique to the DS platform. For example, players must blow into the microphone to extinguish a pyrotechnics effects gone wrong, or use the touch screen to autograph a crazed fan’s shirt in the middle of their set. Featuring five unlockable new venues, the game lets players personalize their experience by choosing the color of their axe of choice, selecting to play as one of six characters — two of which are all new and exclusive to Guitar Hero: On Tour – and outfitting their guitarist in numerous styles.

EA’s Hostile Takeover Bid of Take-Two Interactive

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I go to bed in an Oscar induced stupor and the video game world goes all topsy turvey.  Phil Harisson leaves Sony and now this bit of news – EA has made an unsolicited $2 billion offer to buy Take-Two Interactive the makers of Grand Theft Auto.  Other than the success of GTA, Take-Two hasn’t done much else (Bully and Ping Pong). I always thought the company was made up of a bunch of Arrogant ass-holes and would love to see the entire executive staff fired. Take-Two has hit “hard times” in the last few years and there have been rumors of several companies eying it so it’s no surprise that someone would make the attempt. I am surprised and a little dismayed that it’s EA.  When was the last time they did a decent game?  I was playing Madden 08 this weekend after only playing it a couple of times last year. I remember why I hate it so much. The game is either broken or just too damn hard. And Madden hasn’t been good for the last three editions – 06 had that horrible vision/precision thing, 07 had the best and most balanced gameplay but was buggy and kept crashing on me and 08 is just darn hard.  Now they want to mess up the GTA series?

Phil Harrison Resigns from Sony!

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Wow, in a shocking bit of news SCE Worldwide Studios President Phil Harrison Resigns. After a terrible start it seems like the PS3 is finally going to get it’s act together later this year and he leaves? I’ve met Phil several times over the years at various Sony events – never actually interviewed him and he was always nice to me and he seemed to actually remember me half the time. That could be because I’m usually the only black female at their events, but still. He was a cool guy. Here’s the official release.

TOKYO, Feb. 25 /PRNewswire/ — Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCEI) today announced that Phil Harrison, President of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios (SCE WWS), will resign from Sony Computer Entertainment Group as of February 29, 2008. Kazuo Hirai, President and Group CEO of SCEI, will immediately assume responsibilities as president of SCE WWS, in addition to his current duties. Prior to the launch of the original PlayStation, Phil Harrison joined Sony Electronics Publishing, Ltd. in 1992, which later evolved into Sony computer Entertainment Europe, and since then, he has made a tremendous contribution to the company playing a strategic role in the launch of four PlayStation platforms, as well as building strong relationships with game developers and publishers throughout the world. Since his appointment to the position of president, SCE WWS, Harrison applied his considerable skill, knowledge and expertise to lead SCE Group’s first party game development as well as aggressively pursuing the development of new online entertainment experiences. "As one of the founding members of SCE,

Phil played a key role in the development and growth of the PlayStation business and our industry," said Kazuo Hirai. "It is sad to see him departing from SCE, but I wish to express my gratitude for his many invaluable contributions and also wish Phil the very best of luck in his future endeavors." "The past 15 years at Sony Computer Entertainment has been the defining journey of my life so far," said Phil Harrison. "I am grateful to all the PlayStation family for their incredible support, guidance and friendship. It has been a privilege to serve as part of the team and be inspired by them on a daily basis. I am so proud of everything PlayStation has achieved and will continue to support its future in every way I can."

Microsoft kills HD-DVD Drive

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In a move that surprises no one, Microsoft has officially put an end to it’s HD-DVD add-on drive.  I actually bought one of these last summer from Gamestop as an impulse buy and immediately regretted my decision but couldn’t take it back because Gamestop draconian return policy. Word of advice – NEVER shop there. So I kept it and it grew on me. I never officially jumped on either bandwagon, preferring to rent from Netflix to starting a new collection. My only regret is I paid $120 for the Harry Potter set on HD instead of Blu.  It was my only real HD purchase so I don’t feel too upset over it’s demise. I hope the inevitable Blu-ray add-on (replacement) is smaller, includes a smaller power cable (the one for the HD-DVD is ridiculously large) and includes HDMI with up-conversion.  Last week I finally broke down and purchased the 120 gig hard drive and a pleasant surprise side benefit is it cut down the noise on my 360 by almost 90 percent!  It’s still loud, but it no longer sounds like a jet airplane.  Anyway, here’s the statement.

"As a result of recent decisions made by Toshiba, Hollywood studios, and retailers, Microsoft plans to withdraw from HD DVD.  Xbox will no longer manufacture new HD DVD players for the Xbox 360, but we will continue to provide standard product and warranty support for all Xbox 360 HD DVD Players in the market.  As we stated earlier, we do not believe this decision will have any material impact on the Xbox 360 platform or our position in the marketplace.  HD DVD is one of the several ways we offer a high definition experience to consumers and we will continue to give consumers the choice to enjoy digital distribution of high definition movies and TV shows directly to their living room, along with playback of the DVD movies they already own."

SEGA Superstars Tennis

SEGA Superstars Tennis includes several of the most memorable SEGA characters including Sonic The Hedgehog, AiAi from Super Monkey Ball fame, Ulala of Space Channel 5 and Amigo from Samba De Amigo, each of whom have their own unique attributes, and superstar tennis skills. The game’s arcade style matches are played out on courts based on environments from Sega games of the past such as the lush tropics of Sonic’s Green Hill Zone or the street fair fiesta of Amigo’s Carnival Park to name a few. The game features 16 characters, 10 themed courts, and 4 different modes. I’m a huge fan of Tennis games, so I’m looking forward to see this over the top take on it.

X-Box 360 Goes Indie!

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A few years ago I interviewed Scott Henson one of the big wigs for Microsoft’s X-Box Live service and we talked extensively about the future of the platform and the idea of user generated games for the service.  Today that dream has become a reality as Microsoft announces the immediate availability of XNA created games are available on X-Box Live. “The time has come for the games industry to open its doors to all game creators, enabling anyone to share their creations with the world,” said John Schappert, corporate vice president of LIVE, Software and Services for the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft. “Our goal is to drive a creative and social revolution in games with the same transformative power that we’ve seen in digital music and video sharing.” 

Demonstrating a look into the future potential of community-created games on Xbox 360, Chris Satchell, general manager and chief XNA architect at Microsoft, announced that seven games created using XNA Game Studio 2.0 would be available immediately for Xbox 360 owners to download from Xbox LIVE Marketplace. This move makes all of us who dream of one day creating that surprise "hit" game one step closer to reality.  The one thing I would like to find out is if creators will also be able to eventually sell their games on XBL.

An Xbox 360 community game created using Microsoft’s XNA Game Studio software and XNA Creators Club membership will be able to be submitted for distribution on Xbox LIVE. Each community-created game must then undergo a thorough peer-review process and be evaluated for accuracy in representation and appropriateness. Community game developers will be able to beta test the process this spring and will be able to distribute their games on Xbox LIVE by the end of this year.

Microsoft also announced their 2008 slate of games, looks a bit skimpy at the moment. But it’s still early. We can look forward to Gears of War 2 in November, Fable 2, Ninja Gaiden II, and Too Human.

Alone In The Dark is getting Sticky

I saw this tech demo for the new Alone In The Dark game on Joystiq and thought it was really cool.  Check out the end where we see the many joys of Sticky tape.  The game is coming along very nicely and the it’s use of real time lighting effects is definitely intriguing.  My only issue with the game is that I’m not much of a fan of the Horror genre, but this could make me a believer.