After a week or so of teasing, Eidos Montreal revealed Deus Ex: The Fall: a mobile entry in the Deus Ex series covering some of Human Revolution‘s backstory. Specifically, it focuses on the escapades of Ben Saxon, an augmented mercenary and the central carrier from the book Deus Ex: The Icarus Effect. Betrayed by his employers, the Tyrants (the bosses from HR), he now seeks to uncover the conspiracy surrounding the supply of Neuropozyne, the drug needed for humans to adapt to mechanical augmentation.
The Fall launches this summer for $6.99 on iOS and Android platforms.
“Markets can remain irrational longer than you can remain solvent.” John Maynard Keynes said that, and I’d wager he knows a little more about the economy than you do, because he invented it! Yeah, the financial world is abuzz over Facebook’s IPO, and we’ve got our own take on that, along with a few other items of interest. Behold:
- 38 Studios (Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning) owes the state of Rhode Island $75 million in loan payments. I don’t even have a quip, you have to hear the whole crazy situation to believe it.
- Facebook, as mentioned, went public, and then immediately flatlined before dropping a few bucks today. Cue me feeling smug in three… two…
- Activision drops its suit against EA over the Infinity Ward fiasco, on revelation that they went to absurd lengths to dig up dirt on IW staff. Bobby Kotick, up to no good? Pshaw, sirrah.
- Epic unveils the Unreal 4 engine, prompting a new wave of speculation as to how many shades of brown and grey it can render.
- CD Projekt’s hiring for a modern IP. Given their work with fantasy IP, I expect good things. Difficult things that kill me in the tutorial, but good things all the same.
- Diablo III goes live, then dies, then lives again, then dies again, and so on. Who could possibly have forseen difficulties with millions of players going online at once?
- Square Enix is profitable again, Bamco keeps busy with the Tales series, and more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Go Public or Die Trying’ »
“Anytime, Fly Girl.”
I don’t know about you guys, but I dropped my pacifist playthrough right then and there. But enough about how I pass the time waiting for Mass Effect 3, it’s time for the news! Here’s what we’ve got:
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – You Keep Using That Word’ »
All right, back in business! Just in time to let you all know that, naturally, there will not be a podcast on Christmas Day. Enjoy the holidays everyone, and I’ll see you all in the new year! Until then let us dig into the bigger happenings this week (and 2011 in general), including the following:
- Zynga went public and entered its first day of trading, starting at $10/share and never quite getting higher. You may want to get popcorn for this.
- Nintendo partnered with the Louvre to use its 3DS as an interactive display guide. Yes, that Louvre.
- Meanwhile, DJ Deadmau5
lost and then recovered pretended to lose a demo PS Vita in a cab, while a boat named the PlayStation Vita was capsized at sea. What’s the over/under on these being roundabout marketing schemes versus ill omens?
- Square Enix got hacked, with the scope of the theft not known but the company certain no credit card information was leaked. Affected users were heard to collectively say “Oh no, not again.”
- CD Projekt pursued Witcher 2 pirates, stating that being anti-DRM and anti-piracy aren’t mutually exclusive. I am forced to conclude they are trying to confuse the internet, and it’s working.
- 2011 roundup: my own Top 5 for major events in the gaming industry, from the awesome to the shocking to the just plain sad.
- Naughty Dog claims The Last of Us will have a heavy story focus (oh, boy), Pokemon partakes in a most unusual crossover, and much more! Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Zynga All the Way’ »
The Missing Link, upcoming downloadable content for Deus Ex: Human Revolution, will be available starting October 18. Priced at 1200 MS points/$14.99, the DLC stuffs Adam on a boat with deactivated augs and no fridge. As previously mentioned, players will have the ability to respec their Praxis points along the way.
Hey-hey-hey, how’s everybody doing out there? If you’re from Chicago I know the answer: terrible. Was tempted to go out and break something, but it’s hard to start a good riot in the suburbs, you know what I mean? Plus it’s rainy out. I admit, I’m a fair-weather sports fanatic. But enough about me, you’re here for the news. Here’s what’s going down:
- Final Fantasy X goes high-def, providing a way to watch the infamous Laughing Scene the way it was meant to be seen.
- Sony’s PS Vita gets some face time, trying to assure people it’s not the size of the battery that counts. A sizable media SNAFU makes this harder to accept.
- On top of this, word gets out that Sony’s revised TOS thingy has a ‘no-suing’ clause, and a Sony exec comments that the 3DS is not a competing device. Also, they have more than enough lifeboats for everybody on board.
- Meanwhile, Nintendo announces a slew of 3DS titles, though proclamations of doooooooom follow a stock price drop. Never mind that the same thing regularly happens to Apple.
- Slate examines the downfall of 3D movie ticket sales, which may explain some of the difficulties Nintendo faces. Short version: after Avatar, viewers went “Cool, but what else you got?”
- Retail sales are on the decline yet again – gee, I wonder why – advertisements show up in Deus Ex: Human Revolution loading screens, and more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Seeing Doom Everywhere’ »
Longtime fans could be forgiven for being wary of Deus Ex: Human Revolution. It’s a prequel to a series that ended rather decisively, the last outing proved somewhat disappointing, and the original’s complexity might not sell in today’s market. Normally that’s a free space and a commercial set to rock music away from bad sequel Bingo. Let’s not kid ourselves, the real issue surrounding Human Revolution has nothing to do with transhumanism or the nature of man. Instead the question is how it holds up after years of anticipation, and more than that how well it stands on its own. Is it a great game in a rich world packed with meaningful choices? Absolutely. Does it surpass Deus Ex? Almost. Continue reading ‘Deus Ex: Human Revolution – Staff Review’ »
Evening, all! Whether you spent this Sunday in mournful remembrance of 9/11 or calling for the head of your team’s offensive coordinator, we’re glad to have you join us for the news. Here’s what’s going down this week:
- Dragon Quest X makes the jump to MMO superstardom. Longtime fans outside of Japan go “Yaaay! …wait, what?“
- The Dragon Quest news is such a shock it caused Asian stocks to take a dive, notably Square Enix and Sony. So argues Nikkei, at least. Random people on the internet disagree.
- That said, Deus Ex: Human Revolution shipped a tidy number of copies, locking in the eventual development of Human Revolution 2, Human Revolution 2-2, and Nucl3arsnake’s Island Hacking Adventure.
- Dead Island has a major stumble on release, substituting a developer build for the full version in Steam copies. I take this time to vent about false advertising with the trailer, and the horror game genre in general.
- Gamasutra has a handy breakdown of the year’s biggest publisher flubs. I say let’s shoot for the moon and take bets on what crazy things can happen before 2012.
- Nintendo turns a corner with the 3DS (at least for the moment), “someone” registers the domain of www.finalfantasyxiii-3.com, and more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – The Fast Track to Infamy’ »
Finally got to upload this, would’ve had it earlier if not for an inopportune (though easily fixed) network hiccup. Anyway, hope you’re all enjoying the beautiful Labor Day weekend! It’s time for the news:
- Famitsu unveiled a cornucopia of Persona news: a Vita port of 4, a fighting game, and a lot of dancing around Persona 5. So much speculation, so little time.
- Bethesda does the timed exclusivity song-and-dance with Skyrim DLC, setting a new record by doing so before the game launches. The power of the money hat is strong.
- Zeboyd Games gets a crack at Penny Arcade Adventures: Really Long Subtitle: Episode 3. Don’t underestimate them; Breath of Death VII is deceptively good.
- Sony plans another head-mounted TV screen monstrosity. No, Sony, the “3D” part of it doesn’t make it any more likely to succeed than your last attempt.
- Square Enix plans to boost the staff at Eidos Montreal, Doom‘s 17-year ban in Germany is removed, and more!
- Plus, a spotlight on the recent financial workings of Zynga, Groupon, and LinkedIn: fuzzy accounting practices, pending market headaches, and the SEC asking pointed questions like “Why do all these numbers have asterisks by them?” and “Why did your accountant introduce himself with air quotes?”
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Summon Your Accountant’ »
Just in case you’re not too busy throwing boxes and trying to bullseye them with the revolver, Eidos recently ran a brief ARG teasing the reveal of DLC for Deus Ex: Human Revolution. With its completion, a proper press release was issued to announce the content: The Missing Link. Continue reading ‘Deus Ex: Human Revolution DLC Announced’ »
Good evening, folks! My kingdom for a newsman fedora, but the show must go on. At least until Deus Ex: Human Revolution lures me back in with its siren song. Goddamn but that game is hard to put down. Anyway, let’s get to the news:
- GameStop opens PC copies of Deus Ex: Human Revolution to remove OnLive coupons. Square Enix, like everyone else, had forgotten GameStop sells PC games.
- MCV conducts a survey of games journalists about the industry, with some surprising consistency in their answers. Check the full thing out here, it’s worth a read.
- Steve Jobs vacates his position as Apple’s CEO, prompting everybody to panic before he can finish his sentence with “…but staying on the board of directors.”
- BioWare’s Greg Zeschuk gives an interview with VG 24/7; the internet hears ‘RPGs’ and ‘less relevant’ and takes it from there. Go Team Knee-jerk! (Full disclosure: I do mourn the absence of big-budget Baldur’s Gate-style RPGs.)
- EA and Starbreeze Studios may be developing a new Syndicate game. Somewhere, Peter Molyneux is feeling an unexplained pang of regret and loss.
- A Latitude Research survey attempts to dispel old myths about gamers, the .hack series gets a movie when they really need a (better) game, and more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Comparing Apple and Lemon-Lime’ »
Damn but it was hard to focus and get this done. Human Revolution is right there on my hard drive, locked away and waiting for a signal from the Steam mothership to grant access. Buuuut I guess while I’m waiting we should get to the news. Here’s what’s going on this week:
- Following sluggish sales, Japanese retailers begin scaling down 360 business. Microsoft, trying sticking anime girls on more things next time. Hey, it worked for Windows 7.
- Valve’s Gabe Newell responds to the whole EA-taking-its-games-off-Steam thing. Gabe, if they threaten Mass Effect 3, for the love of god just give them what they ask for. It’s not worth the risk, man.
- Sony and Nintendo have a crazy-off, chopping features out of new PSP and Wii models in Europe. I’m short on explanations that don’t involve hallucinogens.
- Nintendo announces The Last Story and Pandora’s Tower for Europe, while ShopTo.net reports “unexpected late demand” for Xenoblade Chronicles. Well, gosh, where could that possibly be coming from?
- Star Wars: The Old Republic may actually need a limited launch to keep servers running smoothly. No, that still doesn’t make it a World of Warcraft killer, stop asking.
- Deus Ex: Human Revolution is rumored to be region-locked in Europe, until Squenix drops this idea after being warned it may be illegal in response to fan outcry. Hooray!
- Seriously guys, we’re getting another Deus Ex in a matter of days oh god I forgot to turn off italics I don’t even care eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – My Business is Augmented’ »
In a press release today, Square Enix announced the various goodies it would have on display at Comic-Con in San Diego. Attendees will have access to playable previews of Dead Island, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, Final Fantasy XIII-2, and Wakfu. Two one-hour panels will also be devoted to Dead Island and Deus Ex. The press release in full can be read here, and Comic-Con begins this week.
Additionally, another site launched by Square Enix suggests that FFXIII-2 will be on display in Seattle and New York later this year. The site, Word to Your Moogle, lists the dates as August 26-28 for Seattle and October 13-16 for New York, but has little else in the way of information.
I just want you all to know I wrote this all with that Yogurting flash synced to the Droyds remix of Armand van Helden’s “In Your Eyes” playing in the background. I don’t know why, I think I forgot it was on at some point. Catchy song, though. I digress. Welcome back, guys! In What Happened This Week, we discuss the following:
- Namco-Bandai files suit against CD Projekt’s parent company over The Witcher 2 distribution rights in Europe. Players express shock that Namco distributes games in other countries.
- Square Enix pursues legal action against unnamed individuals over the Deus Ex: Human Revolution leak. Unnamed… or Anonymous? Probably the first one.
- My reaction to Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Ehhhhhhhhnnnnn….
- Zynga opens a studio in Toronto by buying an existing developing and absorbing them. Guys you already filed for your IPO, you can stop worrying everybody now. Guys?
- Indie developers voice their discontent with Xbox Live’s indie game service. Steam offers to be shoulder-to-cry-on guy while winking knowingly at the camera.
- I offer commentary and analysis on Senate Bill S.978, and where it fits in the larger picture of US political discourse. Short version: don’t panic, our problems are much bigger.
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Visibility and Perspective’ »
Via press release, Square Enix announced that an art exhibition in New York City will feature works centered around the world of Deus Ex: Human Revolution. Starting July 28, the event is being hosted at the Wooster Street Social Club and will run for two weeks. Both well-known and emerging artists will have their creations on display, with proceeds from all sales to be put towards “supporting further education in the arts.”
The press release and a list of the artists who will be present can be read in full here.
Mandatory viewing for all Deus Ex fans.
Howdy folks! Getting busy around here before E3, but we still have time to wrap up the news. Let’s break it down:
- Groupon joins Zynga, PopCap, etc. in preparing to go public, despite not actually making a profit. We should make a drinking game out of this.
- A huge preview build for Deus Ex: Human Revolution got leaked to the internet. To everyone’s surprise, nobody minds. File that under “did not see coming.”
- Interplay teeters on the brink of bankruptcy, as they seemingly have for years now. But don’t worry, Fallout Online is gonna be here any day now!
- Dueling digital distribution services: Gamestop automatically charges for re-downloading “insurance,” which its competitors give away for free…
- …while EA launches its own DD network coincidentally named after one of the studios it absorbed. Oooh, awk~waaard.
- E3 pre-conference projections: Nintendo’s new hardware, Sony’s image problem, and Microsoft’s Kinect… stuff.
In addition we have some late-breaking news that didn’t make it into the recording: NPR and NECN.com reported that not only was Nintendo hacked, but they were hacked by the same group that’s been plaguing Sony recently. No data was stolen in the Nintendo hack, but the group, calling itself Lulz Security, has claimed responsibility for an attack on Sony Pictures that resulted in a million more users’ personal information.
From where I sit there’s actually a fairly clear line between exposing a company’s lackluster security procedures – which Sony is clearly guilty of – and releasing sensitive information for all to see. The second Robin Hood starts shooting random people and telling them to blame the authorities for failing to protect them, he’s lost the argument. I don’t see the Nintendo hack changing the game much, although I’d put money down that these ongoing hacks are going to draw more attention than LulzSec might like. Much as it pains me to admit, life isn’t Shadowrun, and when the feds come knocking the game’s pretty much over.
And now, on with the actual episode. Enjoy!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Pre-E3 Warmup With Electronic Old Men’ »
The latest trailer for Deus Ex: Human Revolution was released today, showing a bit more gameplay and hinting at Adam’s personal stake in the proceedings. Check the full thing out care of IGN or YouTube. And now, back to my media blackout so I can go into this game with as little hype as possible.
I miss Dr. Weird.
What’s happening, everybody? Hope you’re braced for the coming week, what with Witcher 2 and New Vegas DLC coming up. In the meantime, let us discuss the many interesting things that have happened since last Sunday:
- The Economist speculates on a possible tech/internet bubble, driven by overconfident investors and unproven business models. And here we thought time travel was impossible.
- Microsoft pays $Texas for Skype. Why would they buy a largely free VOIP service as a tech bubble is being built? Why, indeed.
- PSN is finally back up, bringing the catastrophic train wreck to at least partial closure. Which means we can now focus on Sony’s harmless and entertaining train wrecks.
- Eidos and Deus Ex: Human Revolution websites get hacked. Hey, hackers, that’s not funny. Deus Ex has been delayed enough.
- Square Enix has a rough week, owing in part to Final Fantasy XIV‘s amazingly poor launch condition. Really now, are high-res catgirls and magic midgets that hard to deliver?
- The National Endowment for the Arts classifies games as art, thus solving all problems with the games industry forever.
- Call of Duty vs. Battlefield at launch, the US Navy makes an anti-piracy MMO, the Harvest Moon folk join up with some weird colleagues, and much more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – It’s Not Different At All, Is It Steve?!’ »
Square Enix announced today that, apart from boxed retail copies, both the regular and Augmented Editions of Deus Ex: Human Revolution will be available via Steam. The Augmented Edition includes the usual artbook, making-of videos, soundtrack, graphic novel, and so on, but on top of that is a free download of the original Deus Ex, specifically the Game of the Year Edition.
Preorders on Steam carry a 10% discount for today only: $53.99 for Augmented, $44.99 for standard.
Happy Easter, folks! The news doesn’t take holidays, however, so here’s what’s new and exciting:
- A reading from the Book of Royko: the proper way to deal with a hangover. Sony is gonna need this. And speaking of which…
- Sony’s PSN shutdown continues for as-yet unexplained reasons. Valve cannot possibly be amused by this.
- Ironically, the PSP Go quietly slips out the back during this same time. With the PSN down, it shall not be missed.
- More Wii 2 specs: screens on controllers, Radeon hardware in the box, and a potential price range. And the crowd falls silent.
- Very Serious People say Nintendo is doooooooomed! because it doesn’t sell games for $0.99. Yeah, I’m not seeing it either.
- Obsidian lays off a few New Vegas personnel. Speculation abounds on what this means and what Obsidian does best. Hint: more Bethsidian Fallout please.
- Deus Ex: Human Revolution devs respond to fans, the ESRB launches a machine to do their job for them, and so much more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – The Industry Drives People to Binge Drinking’ »