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3DS News

Two More Special 3DS XL Colors Arriving Soon In Japan

The Nintendo 3DS is in its third year of life now, with the 3DS XL (LL in Japan) in its second year, and the recently released 2DS in its first year. These consoles have celebrated much success recently, and Nintendo just loves to rile up collectors by introducing new, special colors or designs every so often. We are currently in the midst of special design season for the 3DS XL, it seems, with the recent release of the Pokémon X and Y themes (for Japan, North America, and Europe), the recent announcement of the Luigi theme (for Europe; its already available in Japan), and the release of the Triforce theme (once again for Europe) coming in the near future. That is not all, though; Nintendo recently unveiled two more special 3DS XL themes for Japan.

The new themes are orange (and black) and turquoise (and black), and they both come as a part of a special bundle. With the 3DS XL will come a 4 GB SD card, a matching carrying pouch, and a charger for the handheld, something that does not normally come with a 3DS XL in Japan. The bundle will cost 19,900 yen, or $204, and will release on November 28th. These new themes look gorgeous, so it will be a difficult choice for those looking to buy a 3DS in Japan come fall.

Sources: Nintendo JP, Engadget

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Keiji Inafune Says That Mario Is “The Anchor That Grounds Almost All Games”

“Mario” is a name that goes a long way in the gaming industry. Every single person in the industry is familiar with the red-capped Italian plumber, and gamers and non-gamers around the world know of at least his name and his famous image. He has starred in a plethora of games, with a main series branching off into many spin-offs, many of which act as a series in themselves (take Mario Party, for example).

Since his creation, Mario has followed a wonderful path, becoming one of the most, if not the most, famous video game characters in the world. It is no wonder, then, when a company focused on video games, such as IGN, decides to pay a tribute to the beloved plumber.

Yesterday, IGN posted an article in which some of the gaming industry’s important members shared memories about the plumber and discussed his legacy. The article highlights the memories of people such as Cliff Bleszinski, a co-creator of Unreal and Gears of War, and Jim Merrick, former technical director at Nintendo of America. The most touching praise for Mario, though, came from Keiji Inafune, the creator of Mega Man. He only had super things to say about Mario and his creator, Shigeru Miyamoto, going as far as to say that Mario is “the anchor that grounds almost all games.” You can see the rest of what he had to say about Mario below.

“If any creator has not played Mario, then they’re probably not a good creator. That’s something I can say with 100 percent confidence. Mario is, for game creators, the development bible. There are so many hints about good design, about cute characters, about innovation in using an existing gameplay system. It’s something you have to constantly look at and examine and take hints from as a game creator. It’s the anchor that grounds almost all games.
I have total respect for Miyamoto, to the point where… It’s very strange that there are national cultural treasures – they’re traditionally sportsmen. I think it’s very strange that somebody as famous as Miyamoto hasn’t been designated one of those people. He’s talked about in all different countries. Lots of people know him. He’s pushed forward Japanese culture and interest in Japan all over the world. He’s somebody that deserves everyone’s ultimate respect, and a lot of that is due to being able to create Mario. And Super Mario Bros. 3, of course, within that, was a fantastic game.” — Keiji Inafune

This is some pretty high praise coming from the creator of another highly recognizable video game character, and it speaks volumes to Mario’s, and Miyamoto’s, relevance in the industry, even after all this time. The rest of the article is very touching and gives great tribute to Mario, so it is definitely worth a read. The link can be found below.

Leave your favorite Mario memory in the comments below!

Source: IGN

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No Online Play For Mario Party: Island Tour

This November, everyone’s favorite mini-game filled, crazy board game adventure, Mario Party, is coming to the Nintendo 3DS. Announced back in April, Mario Party: Island Tour will mark the series’ first appearance on the 3DS and one big question has surrounded the game since its announcement: will it feature online multiplayer? The answer is a definite no, straight from a Nintendo representative who spoke to Nintendo World Report at a recent demo event.

This may come as a shock to players who were hoping against hope for online multiplayer for the game, but it is not all bad; the game will be fully playable off of one game card using Download Play. While it is not online multiplayer, it is still something, and should still allow for some crazy multiplayer fun by utilizing all 80 of the games mini-games across its 7 game maps.

The Mario Party series will celebrate its 15th birthday this December (in Japan; next February for North America and March for everyone else), and Island Tour will be available to aid in the celebration, with the game releasing on November 22nd in North America, winter 2013 in Japan, and early 2014 for the rest of the world.

Source: Nintendo World Report

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New Sonic Lost World Trailer Straight From European Nintendo Direct

Today was another exciting day for Nintendo fans. The Big N delivered some totally rad new information to the world via another Nintendo Direct, and one of the many gems shown comes from the European Nintendo Direct, which featured a brand new, chili dog-tastic Sonic Lost World trailer.

The trailer, which can be found above, highlights many things found within the game, such as the Deadly Six, worlds and levels on the Lost Hex, the new parkour features, multiple routes per level, updated combat, wisp powers (both new and old), off-TV play, and multi-player features. This trailer is keeping my hopes high for this game, which is promising to be a definitive 3D Sonic adventure, so be sure to check it out and subscribe to the friendly folks who made the trailer available (wink wink).

Sonic Lost World releases on October 18th in Europe, 19th in Australia, 24th in Japan, and 29th in North America.

Are you ready to face the Deadly Six? Or is Sonic not really your thing?

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SEGA Says That The Nintendo-Exclusive Deal “Just Made Sense”

Nintendo has fallen on some hard times so far this year, with the Wii U heavily under-performing and the disappearance of most major third-party developers not helping. Therefore, it is always great news when a third-party comes out in defense of Nintendo and their newest home console. A small number of third-parties have adamant support for Nintendo and the Wii U, and SEGA, one of the most supportive developers, has explained why it partners so closely with Nintendo recently in an interview with Polygon.

SEGA, if you remember, was once a top console maker, fighting head-to-head with Nintendo and even winning some battles. Ultimately, SEGA was forced to drop out of the console race, but not without giving the world one of the best video game characters around: Sonic the Hedgehog. The Blue Blur has raced to various consoles since SEGA became third-party, but, as time has gone on, it has become increasingly apparent that Nintendo consoles are favored for featuring the fans’ favorite hedgehog. SEGA representatives went into detail about this with Polygon when Polygon had hands-on time with the brand new, Wii U exclusive Sonic Lost World. Sonic brand manager Aaron Webber and producer Sam Mullen talked to Polygon and said that the recent three game Nintendo-exclusivity deal for Sonicjust made sense.”

“If we trace Sonic’s third-party roots all the way back to just after the Dreamcast, we released Sonic Adventure 2: Battle on the GameCube and it did phenomenally well. We think that’s because there was a lot of overlap between the Sonic/SEGA and Nintendo crowd at that time, and we just found historically that Sonic performs really, really well on Nintendo platforms. Sonic Colors did great,Sonic and the Black Knight did well and Sonic and Secret Rings did well — all Nintendo. When we look at the numbers, we thought — this is clearly where our audience is.” Aaron Webber

So SEGA believes, and probably rightly so, that their audience lies with Nintendo. This realization basically secures SEGA as a fully supportive third-party to Nintendo, unless they choose to take another path, such as becoming more than a third-party to Nintendo. While I personally would like to see that, SEGA has not said anything even hinting at the possibility of becoming permanently exclusive to Nintendo; it is merely some fun food-for-thought.

What do you think? Do you want to see SEGA become more to Nintendo than a third-party? Or do you like things the way that they currently are?

Source: Polygon

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Rayman Legends Wii U Outsells All Other Formats in UK

In a pleasantly surprising turn of events, it seems that a multi-platform game is doing the best on the Wii U, at least in the United Kingdom. Rayman Legends is the critically acclaimed sequel to the critically acclaimed Rayman Origins, which saw release on Wii, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. Both games have garnered praise from gamers and critics alike, and Legends seems to be a title with some weight behind it, especially since it went multi-platform.

Originally a Wii U exclusive, the game has been released on Wii U, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC in the United Kingdom (the PlayStation Vita version doesn’t release until September 12th), but, out of all of these platforms and their high install bases, aside from the Wii U, the Wii U version is still outselling the other versions of the game. Currently the Wii U version of the game is at the 14th position on the individual format sales chart and, while that may seem unimpressive, the game’s Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 counterparts are locked in at spots 18 and 20, respectively, showing that the Wii U version does have a definitive edge on the others.

It may have angered some consumers when the game was changed into a multi-platform, but it seems that the Wii U is still benefiting from the original concept of it being exclusive. The game was announced as an exclusive and advertised as such for awhile, and this seems to have positively impacted the sales on the Wii U, something that many Nintendo fans will be pleased about. We’ll have to wait and see if the pattern follows suit in North America, as the game does not release until tomorrow.

Are you excited for this game? Or are you already playing it? Leave excitement or impressions in the comments!

Source: Chart-Track UK

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Reggie Says Nintendo Loves Indie Developers

Nintendo has not always been the most friendly to non-first-party developers, but with the Wii U and the Nintendo 3DS it seems that they are really, really reaching out to independent developers. This is a great move on Nintendo’s part, as indie developers are becoming increasingly relevant in this day and age. Many of these developers have taken notice of Nintendo’s support of them, and a lot of them say that Nintendo is a wonderful company to work with.

In a recent interview with IGN, Reggie Fils-Aime, president of Nintendo of America, reiterated the company’s love for indie developers and discussed the current workings which are going to make independent development on Nintendo’s consoles easier than ever.

“The independent developer, especially those developers who have experience, who’ve shown real capabilities, we love those independent developers. And what we’re doing is creating even more of an infrastructure for a brand-new independent developer, someone who’s never created content before, to be effective on our platform. So it’s an area that we’re spending a lot more time and a lot more energy to create the infrastructure to help these developers publish their content and be effective. It’s something that we have had to learn how to do. Because our systems aren’t straightforward for a developer who hasn’t had a lot of experience.”

“We’re spending a lot more time and a lot more energy to create the infrastructure to help these developers publish their content and be effective.”

“First, you want the tools to be able to create your content and bring it onto the system. That’s why we’ve announced the relationship with Unity. That’s why we’ve created the Nintendo Web Framework. Again, we’ve taken steps on the development side to make our system independent-friendly. Second thing we’ve done is we’ve created the merchandising capabilities, right? So when you’re on the eShop, how we promote and merchandise content.”

“You’ll see that we’re merchandising indies’ content right alongside our content. There’s no separate area. There’s no challenge of discovery to find this content. That’s what the independent developers really love, because they know that consumers are going to the eShop looking for. If there’s a value program for some Virtual Console content, or if we’ve re-released a new piece of content, and right alongside that is going to be indies’ content. They love that.” — Reggie Fils-Aime

It really is great to see all of these big video game companies embracing independent developers nowadays. Sony and Microsoft have both shown their love for indies recently at Gamescom, and Nintendo is now following suit, reiterating their inclusion of indie developers in their plans for the future.

What do you think? Are you excited to see independent developers getting so much love?

Source: IGN

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GameStop Managers Will Receive PlayStation 4 and Xbox One At Launch

Looks like it is a great time to be a GameStop manager. As everyone who knows anything about video games knows, this holiday season marks the launch of two next generation consoles: the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One. These consoles will change the industry for sure, and many people are clamoring for their release, particularly people who do things like work at GameStop. At this year’s GameStop EXPO, which is ongoing in Las Vegas, GameStop announced that all GameStop managers will be receiving a PlayStation 4, six PlayStation 4 titles, one PlayStation 3 title, and an Xbox One at their launches (there is no word on any Xbox One games bundle with this as of yet).

All of this information was confirmed by Joystiq, who got in touch with GameStop for details. According to Joystiq, the Sony games that are coming as a part of this are Killzone: Shadowfall, NBA 2K14, Madden, FIFA 14, Need for Speed: Rivals, Battlefield 4, and Beyond: Two Souls. When asked to clarify the situation, as Beyond: Two Souls is only slated for PlayStation 3, a GameStop spokesperson said “Beyond is for PS3, all others are for PS4. Some are physical and some are digital vouchers.” This looks like a great deal for GameStop general managers who, I’m sure, are more than excited about this next generation.

Source: Joystiq

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Sony Apologizes for Grand Theft Auto V Leak

One of the most highly anticipated games of the year is Grand Theft Auto V. Everywhere around the gaming industry there are people talking about this game and how big and exciting it is going to be. Fans are thoroughly excited for all that the game is sure to hold, and a lot has been kept quiet about the game to ensure that it has a huge worldwide launch on September 17th.

Unfortunately, though, there has been a leak of game information thanks to the PlayStation Store in Europe. It turns out that some people who purchased the digital preorder of the game were able to download a preorder file that was not supposed to be accessible. Through this file, they were able to access some content within the game itself, including things such as the main theme and soundtrack. Since the discovery of this leak, the file has been removed from the PlayStation Store and Sony has apologized to Rockstar, the game’s publisher, and Grand Theft Auto fans for the leakage of spoiler content, but the damage has already been done as the leakage has been posted online. To defend yourselves from spoilers, be very careful as you tread across the web, and don’t go looking for it because it is out there.

Below is the blog post, posted by Sid Shuman, PlayStation’s Social Media Manager, where Sony acknowledges the leak and apologizes for it.

“Regrettably, some people who downloaded the digital pre-order of Grand Theft Auto V through the PlayStation Store in Europe were able to access certain GTA V assets. These assets were posted online. We have since removed the digital pre-order file from the PlayStation Store in Europe. We sincerely apologize to Rockstar and GTA fans across the world who were exposed to the spoiler content. GTA V is one of the most highly anticipated games of the year with a very passionate following, and we’re looking forward to a historic launch on September 17.” — Sid Shuman

With a game of this magnitude, and the leak being spread all across the interwebs, naturally Rockstar had to give a response to the situation. The official response, which was released via Rockstar Newswire, can be found below.

“Unfortunately, as many of you may already know, some people who downloaded the digital pre-order of Grand Theft Auto V through the PlayStation Store in Europe were able to access certain GTAV assets leading to leaked information and media from the game appearing online … As you can imagine, we are deeply disappointed by leaks and spoilers being spread in advance of the game’s launch. GTAV represents years of hard work by many people across the world, and we all couldn’t be more excited to finally share it with you properly this September 17th.” — Rockstar

So Rockstar isn’t too happy about this situation but, with a game this high profile, I’m sure the release is going to be special, leaks or not.

Are you upset by this leak? Or do you not really mind it?

Source: PlayStation Blog U.S., Rockstar Newswire

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Two Hidden Heroes Revealed to be in The Wonderful 101

By now, pretty much every person who has ever laid eyes on a Nintendo console, been to their website, purchased a gaming magazine, etc, has heard of Platinum Games’ newest game, The Wonderful 101. The game has a lot of marketing behind it, and it has promised so far to bring a heavy hitter to the Wii U in an attempt to bolster sales and show what the console can do. The game was released yesterday in Europe, today in Japan and Australia, and will be released on September 15th in North America, and the reviews have been coming in as generally favorable, even though Kamiya, the game’s director, feels that the game is being plagued by people not getting used to the controls before making an opinion.

Kamiya has been outspoken during the process of development for the game, spouting out his loves, his fears, and praising the Wii U. Apparently Kamiya is a character in the workplace as well, with the creative staff showing him some love in a unique way. The team put a hidden character in The Wonderful 101 that is based off of Kamiya: Wonder-Director. This was revealed in a recent Iwata Asks between Iwata, President of Nintendo, and The Wonderful 101 development team, consisting of Hitoshi Yamagami (software planning and development), Shingo Matsushita (software planning and development), Atsuni Inaba (producer), and Hideki Kamiya (director) himself. See what was said about Wonder-Director below.

Iwata: It must have been hard to debug, considering the waves of huge changes you made to the game.

Matsushita: That’s true. This may seem like an inside-joke, but there’s a character based on Kamiya-san in the game.

Inaba: That would be Wonder-Director.

Matsushita: When we were debugging at Mario Club, we were really busy as new features would be added on, creating a lot more issues that had to be verified. So everyone was on the edge. And that’s when this Wonder-Director would cause a bug.

Iwata: So this Wonder-Director is one of the hundred heroes?

Matsushita: He’s a bit of a hidden character. If you play it enough, he’ll appear, but he can do something a bit unique, so he was something to watch out for during debug. Physically, he’s very unique looking as well, and his collision detection seems a bit different than other characters.

Inaba: It’s just our creative staff’s way of showing their love for Kamiya.

Along with this tribute to the beloved director of the game, another hidden character was discussed, among other things, during the Iwata Asks session. This character is from a “collaboration” with another mysterious game, which is only mentioned in the Iwata Asks as “that game.” This character has been re-designed to fit into the world of The Wonderful 101, and fans will supposedly get a kick out of him/her.

Iwata: Speaking of characters, can I ask about the collaboration with “that game?”

Inaba: Please do. Kamiya put a lot of love into that.

Kamiya: This game has a lot of fun characters, so I wanted to make it an amazingly different game, and I managed to make it happen.

Iwata: This is a character whose name you can’t yet reveal?

Matsushita: That’s right. Just like with Wonder-Director, if you play enough, that character will appear as a hidden character. And “that character” has been re-designed to match the world of 101. I hope everyone will get a kick out of it.

Iwata: I’m excited to see what that character will look like when translated into the world of this game.

Kamiya: Just like the original, the character will fight with guns, and that other trademark item has been changed into a mask as well. The character will also have its own Unite Morph.

Iwata: Its very own Unite Morph?

Inaba: A lot of work’s been put in, right?

Kamiya: The specs are slightly different too, so it’s a bit of a tricky character.

Iwata: It’s what some would call ‘high specs.’

Matsushita: As you play through the game, you can use attacks where you become larger, and the part where I think you can really see all the thought that went into everything is that just like in the original game, the character won’t fight with guns in that mode but will fight with hand-to-hand combat. All the movements are carefully, carefully made.

Iwata: Those specs are really high-level for a hidden character!

Kamiya: The staff member who created the original movements worked on it. It’s the same motion animator.

This all seems really interesting, and it definitely adds a little extra excitement to the game. Both of these characters sound like a lot of work was put into them, which is good to see considering that they are only extras.

What do you think? Already playing this game? Or are you waiting for its release in your area? Or do you simply not want to play it?

Source: Nintendo

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Crytek Announces New CryEngine, Supports Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Wii U, and PC

As many of you know, Gamescom is currently underway, and with it comes many new and exciting announcements. One such announcement came out of Crytek earlier today: the brand-new CryEngine. This new, state-of-the-art game engine promises to usher in a new era of games featuring top notch graphics. Most of you have probably seen the current CryEngine 3 in action, as it was released in 2009 and ran some of the most advanced games in terms of graphical quality, such as Crysis 3. This updated version of CryEngine will be dropping the number from its title; it will simply be known as CryEngine, not CryEngine 4.

Supported platforms were revealed alongside the engine’s announcement; the all-new CryEngine will support the current generation with the likes of the PlayStation 3 and the Xbox 360, and the next generation with the likes of the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and (in case you were doubting) Wii U. PC will also be supported. See excerpts from the announcement below, featuring Areil Cai, Crytek’s Director of Business Development, and Carl Jones, Crytek’s Business Development Director.

“CRYENGINE users will also benefit from the coming together of Crytek’s Engine Licensing and Research & Development teams; a move designed to double the level of one-to-one care game licensees can tap into, in essence offering Crytek’s R&D as a service for developers using the new CRYENGINE.”

“On top of these changes, the new CRYENGINE supports development on current and next generation consoles (Xbox One, PlayStation®4, and WiiU™), alongside PC, with further platforms to be added in the near future.”

“In line with the new services, the all-in-one development solution will no longer be identified by version numbers; reflecting the fact that constant updates and upgrades are always being applied to keep CRYENGINE at the forefront of its field” — Crytek

“Supplying an engine is not about delivering a static piece of software. It’s about Crytek being an R&D team for our game licensees; providing the latest, greatest technology we can, all the time. As an industry, we’re all looking to deliver games as a service now – and we feel the same approach can be taken with game engines. Today’s announcement reflects this progress, as well as our ongoing commitment to making sure CRYENGINE® licensees always stay well ahead of the game.” — Areil Cai

“Since CryENGINE 3 was launched in 2009, we’ve dramatically changed the engine so many times, with so many major new features, it’s not the same engine anymore. We have revolutionised many parts of the engine: we have overhauled our entire lighting system, built movie quality character rendering and animation solutions, vastly improved the speed and effectiveness of our Sandbox editor, and even our rendering has changed with tessellation, pixel accurate displacement mapping and now physical based rendering; all of this while maintaining our first principal: that making games should be real-time, all the time. CRYENGINE is a new engine from Crytek – and it always will be!” — Carl Jones

This is all very exciting for anyone wanting to welcome the new game engines of the future. It is also great to see that CryEngine will be supported on the Wii U, a console which lacks a lot of new support. Hopefully this means that blockbusters like the Crysis series will end up finding their way onto the platform. Only time will tell.

Source: Crytek

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Helldivers Landing on PlayStation Family of Consoles in 2014

All kinds of new announcements were made today from Gamescon, from release dates to entirely new games. One of the more intriguing new game announcements was Helldivers, a brand-new game that will be released for PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation Vita in 2014 and will feature Cross-Play and Cross-Save between the different platforms. These “Cross” features are setting the stage for possible further crossing over between the PlayStation family of consoles, and it definitely will make for interesting gameplay.

Helldivers is set in a dystopian future where humanity’s freedom is threatened by the enemies of Earth. The Helldivers are Earth’s heroes who must protect mankind from the threats of the enemies. That is all we know as far as story goes, but the game will have a high focus on co-operative efforts and community, featuring some kind of MMO aspects which rely on the global efforts of the entire Helldivers community. All of the good, or bad, that one does will affect the larger campaign, which affects the whole community. It will be interesting to see how this ends up working out in terms of gameplay.

Below is the text from the blog post about the game and a couple of images from the game, and above is the trailer that accompanied the announcement.

“You may know of Arrowhead Game Studios from our previous games like Magicka. Today we’re excited to announce that we’ve teamed up with Sony Computer Entertainment and Foster City Studios to create our next game!”

“So, for all of you out there, both new fans and old, I give you Helldivers. Built for both single-player campaigns and up to four player co-op missions, Helldivers is a top-down shooter set in a satirical and dystopian future where mankind is ruled by a managed democracy.”

“As part of the elite unit called the Helldivers, you choose your deployment zone and dive into battle on procedurally-generated battlefields. Once there, utilise overpowered weapons and Stratagems to defeat the enemies of mankind. Working together as a team will be vital, whether calling in strikes or placing weapons, each action must be totally synchronized to achieve objectives. As with all Arrowhead games, friendly fire is a key part of the game, and if you’re not careful with the Helldivers explosive firepower, you’ll lose the mission and a few friends along the way.”

“Helldivers features Cross-Play and Cross-Save between PS4, PS3, and PS Vita, something that’ll really enforce the co-op nature of the game, but if your preferred poison is to play locally, this is combinable – so you can have two players on a PS4 with two others joining in on Vitas in the same room.”

“I guess you’re wondering about the campaign? The story? Well, this is something that we want the players to explore. This isn’t just a four player co-op game; it’s a co-op game that relies on the global efforts of the entire Helldivers community. You’ll fight with the community to save humanity and all of your combined efforts, mistakes and heroic deeds will affect the larger campaign; a campaign where every battle counts and victories unlock cool content for all.”

“With that, I am really excited to fight alongside you on the battlefield in the not so distant future of 2014.” — PlayStation Blog EU

Source: Sony News Conference

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Sega Provides Release Details for Upcoming Castle of Illusion Remake

Many old-school gamers will remember Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse for the Sega Genesis, a game which captured players’, and critics’, hearts. Back in April, a 2.5D remake of this classic title was confirmed to be coming to many current generation consoles, with the game slated to have a “summer” release. Recently, the Sega Blog was updated with information about the game’s release, revealing the release date, the price, and special bonuses for those who pre-order from the PlayStation Network.

The game, which is simply titled Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse, will be released worldwide for digital download on September 3, 2013 for PlayStation Network, on September 4th for Xbox LIVE Arcade, and for PC digital download for $14.99USD/£ 9.99/€14.99/1200 Microsoft Points. Here is the news straight from the blog post, including details about the the pre-order bonuses for PlayStation users:

“We’re excited to announce that Castle of Illusion Starring Mickey Mouse will be available worldwide for digital download on September 3, 2013 for PlayStation Network, on September 4th for Xbox LIVE Arcade, and for PC digital download as a cost of $14.99USD/£ 9.99/€14.99/1200 Microsoft Points.”

“For a limited time only, customers in North America who pre-order Castle of Illusion on PlayStation Network from August 20 to September 2nd will receive the original Genesis version of game, one pre-order exclusive dynamic theme, and three avatars. Customers will be able to download the original game immediately after pre-ordering.”

“With all-new HD graphics and gameplay, Castle of Illusion brings Mickey and his magical world to life. When the evil witch Mizrabel kidnaps Minnie, it’s up to Mickey to brave the dangers of the Castle of Illusion to rescue Minnie. Gather your courage and take on hordes of rebellious toys, traverse enchanted forests and navigate mazes of living books.” — Sega Blog

So it seems that the PlayStation version would be the one to get, if you are picking between consoles. Those are definitely nice little bonuses to be thrown in. In the gallery below there are multiple screenshots from the updated game, which should be pretty convincing to those who are on the fence about this remake. It definitely looks like it is going to be a remake done right.

Source: Sega

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Resident Evil 7 Will Feature More Survival Horror

Resident Evil is one of gaming’s most beloved franchises, even if the recent entries haven’t been doing so well. Many fans that have been with the series for a long time have been calling for a return to the series’ survival/horror roots, something that has been increasingly lost as the series has developed.

The last main entry in the series, Resident Evil 6, attempted to appeal to many people by having three different stories that allowed three different styles of gameplay, with one being primarily survival/horror, another being primarily action based, and so on. While good in intent, this strategy ended up falling short and caused the game to garner mediocre reviews and to fall two million sales below Capcom’s original expectations. It did still sell well, with five million units being sold worldwide, but it did not get the attention that Capcom wanted.

Capcom believes that they have found the solution, though, by listening to their fans. They believe that the next Resident Evil game should return to the series’ survival/horror roots in order to give fans the game that they yearn for, and they say that the next game will “likely be more targeted at our core fanbase.” This move echoes the direction seen in Resident Evil: Revelations, which was well-received on the Nintendo 3DS and has seen multi-console release since then.

The news of the future of Resident Evil comes to us via MCV talking to former Capcom marketing boss Michael Pattison, and everything he said on the topic can be seen below.

“We have obviously seen the consumer response and the PR response [to Resident Evil 6]. There was some great positives out of that, but it was a mixed bag, as we saw from the review scores. We have got to take that on-board, we can’t ignore that, and we have to take that onto the next game when we make the next Resident Evil.”

“With Resident Evil 6 specifically, we probably put too much content in there, there were comments from consumers that said it felt bloated. The Leon missions went down very well, and because we did Resident Evil Revelations on 3DS, there was a cry out for us to focus our attention on survival horror, rather than be too many things to all people. You’ll find where we go next will likely be more targeted at our core fanbase.”

“A lot is said about the saturation of this zombie, post-apocalyptic survival horror. But it is still alive and well. The Last of Us shows a good direction of what the consumers want. Tomb Raider as well, we spoke to R&D and they looked at that and they enjoyed that experience. I think that proves there is still a strong market for that sort of content.” — Michael Pattison

So Capcom has been inspired by the successes of the The Last of Us and Tomb Raider to return to the Resident Evil series’ roots, a move which many fans will be excited about. Here’s hoping that this plan works out and that Resident Evil does return to its basics and capitalizes off the successes of games like The Last of Us.

Source: MCV

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News PC

Rumor: Grand Theft Auto V to Receive PC release “This Fall”

Ever since its announcement, Grand Theft Auto V has caused a lot of commotion in the gaming world. It was only announced for consoles when it was revealed, though, leaving many PC gamers heartbroken. Some of the more passionate gamers took to the web and created a petition to bring Grand Theft Auto V to the PC platform, and it seems like their prayers may be answered, at least according to a recent Nvidia earnings call.

News comes out of calls and conferences all the time, but it is not always the most accurate. This particular call was transcribed by SeekingAlpha, and the highly observant people at CraveOnline discovered something that would cause tears of joy among those in the PC gaming community, if it proves true. In a listing of the upcoming games on PC, Grand Theft Auto V was shown alongside the likes of the already announced Assassin’s Creed IV and Call of Duty: Ghosts. You can see the exact quote from Nvidia’s senior IR director Chris Evenden below.

“The PC market is evolving as entry level laptops face pressure from tablets. Yet sales of specialty PCs like gaming systems and work stations continue to grow. The disparity reflects how consumers use these different classes of PCs. Many consumers look for PC as a general purpose device they can use for browsing, email, social media video. But much of this can be better served by a tablet. In contrast, gamers are preparing their systems for a strong roster of games coming this fall, including blockbuster franchises, such as Call of Duty: Ghosts, Grand Theft Auto V and Assassin’s Creed IV.” — Chris Evenden

Now, this could be a mistake just as easily as it could be a leak, so it must be taken with the utmost caution. This is not an official confirmation of any kind, but evidence is surely mounting in favor of a PC release for the game. Only time will tell, but this does seem to be a strike in favor of a PC release.

Source: SeekingAlpha, CraveOnline

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3DS News Nintendo

New Screenshots for Three Super Mega Awesome Mega Evolutions Revealed

The world of Pokémon keeps getting more and more changes and new features. The most recent new feature in the long list of new things in the upcoming games, Pokémon X and Pokémon Y, is Mega Evolution, which was revealed last week. Several Pokémon were confirmed to be able to undergo this transformation but, since the announcement, Kangaskhan was added to the list, and now the list amounts to: Ampharos, Absol, Mawile, Mewtwo, Blaziken, Lucario, and Kangaskhan.

These Pokémon all will be able to undergo Mega Evolution during battle while holding a Mega stone. The exact nature of this transformation is unknown currently but, thanks to Gematsu, we have a bit more information about the outcome of the transformations for the first three of these Pokémon. See the details inside!

The details that we know are listed below, and a gallery showcasing Mega Ampharos, Mega Absol, and Mega Mawile can be seen below that. A trailer featuring numerous Mega Evolutions can be found here.

  • Mega Ampharos – When Ampharos Mega Evolves into Mega Ampharos, its head and tail are covered with white fur in this new, gallant appearance. When Ampharos undergoes Mega Evolution, it gains the Dragon type in addition to its original Electric type. When Mega Ampharos increases the amount of electrical energy within itself, the red orbs on its body and fur emit a strong light. It becomes and Electric / Dragon-type and has the ability “Mold Breaker.”
  • Mega Absol – The increased energy that courses through Absol’s body upon Mega Evolving makes its fur stand on end, giving it the appearance of wings. It has the ability “Magic Bounce.”
  • Mega Mawile – When Mawile undergoes Mega Evolution, its trademark huge mouth has multiplied, and now there are two great maws to contend with! It even seems that Mega Mawile is able to control each maw independently. It has the ability “Huge Power.”

I personally am not too sure how I feel about Mega Evolution just yet, but it keeps sounding cooler and cooler. It is unknown just how many Pokémon will be able to Mega Evolve, but hopefully we will not have to wait long to hear more about this mysterious transformation. Here’s hoping for a Mega Charizard.

Source: Gematsu

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3DS News Wii U

Rumor: 3DS and Wii U Will Share eShop Balances Soon

One of the most infuriating things about owning a Wii U and a 3DS is the separation between the eShop accounts. Both the Wii U and the 3DS sport eShops with all sorts of digital games, but money must be placed on each account separately, which is naturally just inconvenient. These days may soon be over though, at least according to Emily Rogers.

Emily Rogers is not a Nintendo employee, but she does seem to have an uncanny amount of insight into what Nintendo is doing behind closed doors, predicating a number of things correctly in the past. Rogers is currently a writer for Nintendo Force magazine and NotEnoughShaders, where she gives her insight into Nintendo and the gaming industry at large. You can see her tweet above, which gives her confirmation of an eShop balance unification.

Ultimately, this is still a rumor, as Rogers is not an official Nintendo employee, but she is very clear and concise in what she is saying, which leads one to believe that she has some inside knowledge. Her sources in the past have not steered her wrong, and this may follow in the same footsteps. We will just have to wait and listen for an official confirmation from the Big N.

What do you think? Is your body ready for eShop balance unification?

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3DS News Nintendo Wii U

Iwata Wants Nintendo to Return to “Nintendo-like” Profits For This Fiscal Year

Nintendo recently released their annual report for 2013, and it holds a peek at the past and a promise for the future. 2013 marks the 30th anniversary of the Famicon’s (Nintendo Entertainment System’s) release in Japan, and the report has many images commemorating this anniversary. On the not-so-nostalgia filled side are the sales numbers that Nintendo has posted for the last fiscal year, which show an operating loss for the company. This news just adds to all of the bad news surrounding the Wii U, but not everyone has lost hope.

Satoru Iwata, Nintendo’s President, has not at all lost hope in his company and their prospects for the future. Past all of the commemorative images in the report, but before all of the sales numbers, is a hopeful message from Iwata himself. One of the highlights of the message is that Iwata wants “to regain ‘Nintendo-like’ profits” for the current fiscal year. The rest of the message is below, and it is well worth a read.

“Since the launch of the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1983, Nintendo has been offering the world unique and original entertainment products under the development concept of hardware and software integration. In the field of home entertainment, where there are few Japanese world-class industries, Nintendo has established a well-known brand truly representing video game culture throughout the world. Our basic strategy is the expansion of the gaming population, which is to encourage as many people in the world as possible, regardless of age, gender or gaming experience, to embrace and enjoy playing video games.

The Nintendo 3DS system, which we launched in 2011 as the successor of Nintendo DS, has such features as 3D gameplay without the need for any special glasses and various communication functions, and thus offers a wide range of entertainment. Also, we released the Wii U system, the successor of Wii, in the year-end sales season of 2012. Wii U has a new controller named the Wii U GamePad with a 6.2 inch touch screen. The Wii U GamePad enables a variety of gameplay, and proposes deeper game experiences and new entertainment that people have never had the opportunity to enjoy before. We will continue to offer software and services that take advantage of the unique features of our video game systems and strive to accelerate the sales pace of our platforms by communicating their unique value to a wide audience.

Regarding our network strategy, we introduced a network communication system called Miiverse where game fans around the world can share and discuss their game experiences, and have opportunities to empathize with one another. Furthermore, for the purpose of adapting to the changes in the environment surrounding the video game market and increasing our business opportunities, we are continuing to expand our digital business by offering paid add-on content, digitally distributing packaged software and so forth.

We reorganized our development divisions in order to make hardware and software development more efficient. In order to offer various software titles, we advance joint development with outside software developers and build an environment, such as Nintendo Web Framework, which provides a way of developing the Wii U software using web technologies. Thus, we strive to strengthen our medium and long-term competitiveness.

Nintendo posted an operating loss for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2013. However, we strive to regain “Nintendo-like” profits for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2014 by providing many people with fascinating games and services. We continue to make brand-new and unique proposals, and make efforts for the growth of the home entertainment industry with a mission that is to pleasantly surprise people and put smiles on the faces of everyone Nintendo touches.” — Satoru Iwata

I especially like that last line there; Iwata wants to bring people happiness, and I can say that Nintendo has brought me countless hours with a smile on my face. Here’s hoping that Nintendo can recover from its current woes and continue into a bright future.

Source: Nintendo

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News

Latest Star Wars: Battlefront Will ‘Most Likely’ Release in the Summer of 2015

Star Wars is one of the most beloved movie franchises of all time, with the original canon of movies spawning an entire expanded universe encompassing all forms of media. Included in the world of Star Wars are many beloved video games, and one series gathered such a following that, after many years without any news, it is now making a glorious comeback.

The Star Wars: Battlefront series has a huge following, and this year at E3 Electronic Arts made many fanboys and fangirls (myself included) squeal with joy when the trailer played announcing a new game in the series, simply titled Star Wars: Battlefront. Only a short trailer was played for the game, and not much has been said since it was announced. Recently, though, EA gave an update on when the game will release: “probably” the summer of 2015. Here is exactly what EA CFO Blake Jorgensen said:

“We have partnered with Walt Disney and LucasFilm to develop a whole new generation of Star Wars games for the console as well as for mobile and handheld devices. The first game that we’re focused on is Battlefront. It’s a traditional game that’s done extremely well and this will most likely come out around the same time as the Star Wars movies start to come out, probably in the summer of ’15.” — Blake Jorgensen

So it seems that the Star Wars series is being rebooted across multiple platforms at the same time, which is an excellent marketing strategy. Being developed by DICE, it seems like this will end up being the definitive Star Wars: Battlefront game, but only time will tell. I am certainly excited to see this game develop, though.

Source: EA

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3DS News Wii U

Target Sets Release Dates For Highly Anticipated Nintendo Games

Over the course of the next few months, Nintendo is releasing many highly anticipated first-party titles. Many of them are releasing in an attempt to bring the Wii U back to prosperity and, if everything goes as planned, these games should allow Nintendo to have a very profitable holiday season.

Since their announcement, these games have had ambiguous release plans revealed to the public, with titles such as The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds getting a “November” release and others just being set for the holiday season. The time for ambiguity seems past now, at least according to Target.

The retailer has listed the release dates of many of these games on their website and, while these dates are not officially confirmed, they do seem more legitimate than just the “-insert month- 1st” placeholders that we usually see popping up for the holiday season around this time of year. An interesting note is that all of these dates happen to be Fridays, which would bring support to the idea of them simply being well-thought-out placeholders.

The Target website has these listings:

Wii U

The Wind Waker HD — October 4th

Wii Party U — October 25th

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze — November 15th

Super Mario 3D World — December 6th

3DS

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds — November 22nd

What do you think? Do you believe these release dates? Or will you wait for the official announcement before you get excited?

Source: Target

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