Posts Tagged ‘Mass Effect (series)’

ME3 Resurgence Pack Now Available

EA has just released the Resurgence Pack DLC for Mass Effect 3. As previously announced, the pack includes two new maps, six new classes – or “Krogan Vanguard and those other guys” as I call it – and an assortment of new weapons. The pack is free for all players with a valid online pass code.

Source: Joystiq

Mass Effect 3 Patch Breaks Mass Effect 3

It used to be that when a game was patched it ran better, but times have changed. Today, if players download the new Xbox 360 patch for Mass Effect 3, they’ll be rolling the dice. The game might resolve underlying issues… or it might cause the system to freeze on the initial menu screen, rendering both the single player and multiplayer campaigns unplayable.

Multiple threads have appeared on BioWare’s forums and other sites regarding the issue. At this time BioWare is aware of the problem, but there’s no word on when–or if–it will be fixed.

BioWare and its parent company EA have been awash in bad press of late. Controversy surrounded Mass Effect 3‘s ending, and voters at the Consumerist chose EA as the “worst company in America.”

What Happened This Week – Never Deal With a Dragon

Yaknow, you can say what you want about Silent Hill: Downpour, but when it comes to being tense and creepy it doesn’t screw around. The actual enemies and combat are pretty naff, but it does a fine job instilling a sense of dread. There are rooms I just do not want to enter. I consider that a mission accomplished for a horror game.

Anyhow, on to the news:

  • The Consumerist wrapped up their online poll for 2012’s Worst Company in America.  EA jumped to the front faster than you can say “biased sampling data.”  And speaking of EA…
  • Mass Effect 3‘s Extended Cut DLC was announced, prompting LOTS OF SPECULATION FROM EVERYONE.  A PAX East BioWare panel offered some more information, likely only stoking the fire at this point.
  • An industry analyst predicts doom for Nintendo, which happens often and just as often is disproven.  What’s new here is getting basic facts wrong.
  • Get your credsticks out: a Shadowrun Kickstarter launched and met its goals handily.  Check it out here, chummer.
  • Gamasutra ran a survey about salaries in the games industry, with some surprising data.  Long story short, I’m in the wrong line of work.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog‘s creator winds up at Nintendo of America, Final Fantasy Versus XIII music winds up in Theatrhythm, and more!

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Never Deal With a Dragon’ »

Mass Effect Patches and Expands Next Week

We have more news from BioWare. The first Mass Effect 3 patch will be coming out next week, on April 9 for the PC and April 10 for the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3. It fixes a long list of issues including problems importing custom characters.

BioWare has also announced the Mass Effect 3 Resurgence Pack, a free DLC that expands multiplayer. The DLC will add two maps, Firebase Condor, situated on one of Palavin’s moons, and Firebase Hydra, an abandoned colony once belonging to the Quarians. Six new characters will now be playable, one for each character class: Asari Justicar (Adept), Krogan Battlemaster (Vanguard), Geth (Infiltrator and Engineer), and Batarian (Soldier and Sentinel). The DLC also adds three new collectible weapons and new consumables.

Players can check out the shiny DLC trailer.

BioWare Announces ME3 Ending Patch

BioWare sent out a press release today detailing how the developer would be handling changes to Mass Effect 3 in response to mounting dissatisfaction among fans regarding the game’s ending.

BioWare will be releasing these changes in the form of a free DLC patch for the game, to be called Extended Cut. The company stated that the DLC would provide “additional context and deeper insight to the conclusion of Commander Shepard’s journey,” adding additional cinematics and epilogue scenes to the game.

The press release went on to state that BioWare remains committed to and proud of “the artistic choices we made in the main game,” saying that they strongly believe in the development team’s vision for the end of the series.  The purpose of Extended Cut, they say, will be to offer greater context, rather than to alter Mass Effect 3‘s ending.

Extended Cut is scheduled for a release sometime this summer.

What Happened This Week – What Do You Do For Money, Hanii

Yeah, I watched the Idolm@ster anime. What can I say? I indulge in the occasional weird Japanese thing. Went better than expected, although I’m not wading into the games anytime soon unless one can guarantee more box malfunctions.

Right then, to the news! This week we have the following:

  • UK retailer GAME files for administration, the UK equivalent of Chapter 11.  Which means it’s game over NO MUST RESIST THE OBVIOUS PUN
  • Meanwhile, Zynga buys out Omgpop, makers of Draw Something, for a whopping $200 million.  They’re gonna have to sell a lot of Zynga funbucks to make it up.
  • BioWare plans “clarification” DLC for the Mass Effect 3 ending.  Forbes, by the way, has a better read on this fiasco than most games media outlets; spoilers aplenty, but give this article a read when you get time.
  • Dragon Age 2 winds down as the team gets ready for Dragon Age 3.  Presumably they’re all just glad they’re not the Mass Effect team right about now.
  • Speaking of dragons, Dragon’s Dogma‘s producer wants to sell ten million copies worldwide.  I’m just going to leave that there and let you picture it.
  • Yet another producer, this one for Resident Evil: Revelations, tells the truth and breaks my heart about where the survival horror genre has gone in recent years.
  • GameStop’s standing in retail is examined, Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition gets confirmed for the iPad, the .Hack series gets a fighting game, and more!

 
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – What Do You Do For Money, Hanii’ »

BioWare to “Clarify” ME3 With Upcoming DLC

From his official blog, BioWare’s co-founder Ray Muzyka has issued a response to the ongoing criticism of Mass Effect 3‘s ending. In it he restates that the team has been listening to all feedback, in and out of the press, and adds that “Exec Producer Casey Hudson and the team are hard at work on a number of game content initiatives that will help answer the questions, providing more clarity for those seeking further closure to their journey. You’ll hear more on this in April.”

No further details were provided, though Muzyka also mentions they plan to continue with new content for Mass Effect and other games. “Rest assured,” he writes, “that your journey in the Mass Effect universe can, and will, continue.”

The post in its entirety can be read here.

FFXIII-2 Getting ME3 Costume DLC

In the future, all costumes will be DLC for everything, everywhere. Right now we’ll have to settle for this: Final Fantasy XIII-2‘s Noel and Serah will be getting downloadable N7 armor based on the Mass Effect series. This goes live starting March 27, priced at ¥300 and 240MSP for PS3 and 360 respectively. Given the pricing, we can assume this is not yet for the US release of XIII-2.

Source: Andriasang

What Happened This Week – Let the Bio Beware

I know, awful awful pun. I shall punish myself accordingly by eating this blueberry muffin. Anyway, we’ve got us some news!

  • Wasteland 2‘s Kickstarter surpasses all expectations, especially mine.  Let the blood sausage festival commence!
  • Obsidian is forced to lay people off and cancel a next-generation project.  I’d like to blame that Bethesda-New Vegas- Metacritic contract shenanigans, but the reality is slightly more complicated.
  • Through a truly unexpected twist of fate, Giant Bomb winds up back inside the GameSpot offices from whence they came.  Awkwaaaard~
  • Incidentally, GB’s Dave Snider wrote an excellent column about finding work in games media.  Well worth a read for even the most discouraged would-be content creator.
  • Speaking of interesting columns, Joystiq’s Rowan Kaiser breaks down the year that Western RPGs… well, broke down.  Also a fascinating read, even if you disagree about when PC RPGs hit their Golden Age.
  • Mass Effect 3‘s ending makes such a splash that it bypasses traditional spoiler alerts.  While I don’t spoil it myself, I do go over what it means for BioWare if they don’t address the criticism post-haste.
  • Baldur’s Gate gets an enhanced edition, Microsoft gets a new Peter Moore, and more!

 
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Let the Bio Beware’ »

Mass Effect 3 is Doing Very Well

On the off chance you were concerned that Mass Effect 3 wouldn’t sell like hotcakes, rest assured that it is, in fact, selling like hotcakes. Electronic Arts announced that 3.5 million copies have been shipped worldwide, with about 890,000 copies sold in North America on launch day alone.

Source: Joystiq

Site Opens for Mass Effect Animated Prequel

In preparation for the Mass Effect prequel movie, Paragon Lost, an official site – currently a teaser only – has been set up here.

What Happened This Week – Should’ve Kept the Base

You know it’s true.

Sorry for the delay, folks! Man, ME3 and Super Tuesday tomorrow! The political junkie and the Mass Effect fanboy are having a fistfight for dominance in my brain stem. Gonna be busyyyyyy~

Anyway, to the news:

  • Mass Effect 3 comes out tomorrow, or, if pirates are to be believed, today.  Guess somebody got ahold of one of those low-orbit packages.  And speaking of which…
  • …one of them got stuck in a tree north of San Francisco, boldly resisting an intrepid IGN team’s attempt to dislodge it.  Well, at least bears weren’t involved.
  • UK retailer GAME is in a bit of financial trouble, revealing they will be unable to stock Mass Effect 3 or Mario Party 9.  Hey, guys?  I know your parents probably told you honesty is the best policy and all, but, uh, you may have wanted to make something up this one time.
  • The rumor mill is abuzz that Valve may be developing a Steam-centric PC-slash-console with baseline stats for modern games.  Hey Valve, Derek and I got this great idea for a mascot.  You ready for this?  He’s a scientist, see, and he’s fighting an alien invasion…
  • Facebook gaming takes a sharp downturn from 2011, with the company having to work harder to draw in new users.
  • By contrast, Zynga unveils their own content delivery platform to stand apart from Facebook, forgetting how they got so many people playing their games in the first place.
  • Pokemon Black & White Version 2 makes like Daft Punk and goes around the world, Kinect gets a tinfoil hat accessory, and more!

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Should’ve Kept the Base’ »

What Happened This Week – Step One: Secure 3Gs

Note to self: if Recettear is any indication, EasyGameStation’s Chantelise is worth a look.  It’s never too late to enjoy indie RPG goodness.  But I ramble, this isn’t about me and my compulsive Steam purchases, it’s time for the news!  Here’s what we’re covering:

  • SCE’s Shu Yoshida explains why the Vita stumbled in Japan, and how for the US/EU release this time shall be different!  We examine why it probably won’t be different at all, Steve.
  • Jack Tretton confirms we won’t see any PS4 developments this year, freeing them up to wait for Microsoft to release their specs focus on the Vita.
  • Meanwhile, EA plans some unusual marketing schemes for Mass Effect 3, including launching early copies of it via weather balloons into the stratosphere.  Quoth Sarcastic Hawke, “What could possibly go wrong?”
  • Brian Fargo of inXile Entertainment announces a Kickstarter plan to fund production of Wasteland 2.  And here I figured it’d take months to test the limits of Kickstarter’s power.
  • The Guinness Book of World Records crowns, by popular vote, Call of Duty: Black Ops as the best videogame ending ever.  I wish I were kidding.
  • One of BioWare’s more accomplished writers strikes out on their own, Bobby Kotick gets elected to Coca-Cola’s board of directors, and more!

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Step One: Secure 3Gs’ »

What Happened This Week – The Jedi Are Gonna Feel This One

The news: disturbing the Force, all day erry day.  Also, going to be off next week for the Super Bowl; not that I have a huge stake in it, but I owe the Giants some residual gratitude for taking out Green Bay.  Us poor Chicagoans would never, ever hear the end of it if they made it back-to-back.  But I get off topic.  I’ll see you all the week after next, but in the meantime here’s what’s going down:

  • The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement steps in to fill the SOPA/PIPA void of “simultaneously overzealous and ineffective legal frameworks for punishing 4chan users.”  Also, at least part of Poland’s parliament is awesome.
  • The Economist dispels a few myths about the US trade deficit with China, using the iPad as an example.  Short version: paying workers ten cents an hour means China doesn’t actually get a lot of money per gizmo.
  • Diablo III‘s senior producer makes an abrupt departure from Blizzard.  Since the game doesn’t even have a release date yet, there can only be one explanation.
  • Meanwhile, EA expands Origin’s reach to include several third-party companies, counting beloved Polish developer CD Projekt among them.  The more you tighten your grasp, EA…
  • The Family Research Council claims the Gay Agenda has its claws in Star Wars: The Old Republic.  BioWare responds by thanking them for the free advertising.
  • Nintendo mulls over a rebranding effort for the Wii U, worried that nontraditional gaming demographics might not get the concept of console cycles.
  • Mass Effect 3 will tie random DLC to action figures, Voodoo Extreme faces staffing budget cuts, and more!

 

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – The Jedi Are Gonna Feel This One’ »

What Happened This Week – The Internet is Safe… For Now

Hey-hey!  Are you all excited?  I know I am, because a Giants-Patriots rematch in the Super Bowl means we’ll get more of this classy gentleman.  Seriously, Carl’s locks make the NFL worth watching long after your team has washed out because you didn’t have a backup quarterback.

Me?  Bitter?  Pshaw.  Anyway, here’s the latest:

  • SOPA and PIPA have been shelved in response to public outcry and prolonged protest.  Major backers withdrawing their support might’ve had something to do with that, too.
  • And yet despite the bills not passing, the FBI and DoJ had no trouble shutting down Megaupload and arresting people in New Zealand.  Why, it’s almost like Washington already has broad powers to pursue people in other countries.
  • Commentary: despite the bills being on hold for now, expect this issue to resurface at some point.  Google “Congress riders” for just one worrying example.
  • All this begs the question of what can be done going forward, both about piracy and the clumsy responses to it.  Ars Technica offers in-depth solutions.  I would start with “try treating your customers like people for a change.”
  • Meanwhile at BioWare, The Old Republic suffers an unfortunate PvP issue right when it can least afford one.  This wouldn’t be quite such a problem if the game weren’t so expensive to produce.
  • Mass Effect 3 aims to ditch the mission-based structure of Mass Effect 2, going for something more fluid and constant.  You mean like Mass Effect 1, right?
  • Zynga buys more mobile game studios.  Yes, Zynga, because that’s what you were doing wrong: not buying enough smaller companies.

 
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – The Internet is Safe… For Now’ »

BioWare Confirms Origin Required for Mass Effect 3

Addressing speculation over EA’s download service, Origin, BioWare’s Chris Priestly posted an FAQ on the official forums.  He confirmed that all PC versions of Mass Effect 3, retail and digital, will require use of Origin.  Apart from a one-time authorization there are no special restrictions; no install limits, and only multiplayer mode will require a constant connection.  However, Mass Effect 3 will not be sold on Steam for the time being.  The full FAQ can be read over yonder.

If you should hear a faint screaming in the distance, a far-off cry of anguish that can only be attributed to a man in intense psychological pain, don’t panic.  That’s just me.

What Happened This Week – Is This the 50’s or 1999?

Nothing like a week of updates to make a guy feel like he’s treading old ground, but hey, anything worth talking about is worth talking about again.  Tonight’s discussion topics are as follows:

  • The Bethesda-Interplay legal mess comes to a close, with Zenimax paying $2mil for Interplay to stop harassing Fallout and claiming the MMO’s going to make it.
  • GSC Game World announces on Facebook that development of STALKER 2 is somehow still underway.  Why do all the beautiful things in life have to be undead?
  • Zynga acquires another executive from EA.  Poor Zynga… their stock’s lackluster performance has caused them to mentally regress to last year.
  • BioWare reveals that Mass Effect 3 will require Origin and will not be available on steam.  Also, they broke their arm in a boking accident.
  • Workers at a Foxconn plant in China threaten mass suicide over low pay and poor conditions.  Industry leaders feign shock that they’re still doing business with Foxconn.
  • Ars Technica gets a closer look at the Wii U, and learns surprisingly little.
  • Diablo III gets a console version, a Gaikai rep makes a silly assumption about the Big Three, and more!

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Is This the 50’s or 1999?’ »

What Happened This Week – Zynga All the Way

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’ »

What Happened This Week – Endless Gouging Phenomenon

The weekend ain’t over just yet! Although I’ll be glad when it is, and I can leave the stench of disappointing football behind me. Why, Cutler, why did you have to leave us when you were finally doing good?! Giants, why did you have to let Green Bay win again?! It just ain’t fair, man.

Oh right, I should probably talk about the news. In today’s episode:

  • Nintendo finally deigns to release Xenosaga on this side of the pond.  Next up: The Last Story and Pandora’s Tower, AKA “That third one I keep forgetting.”
  • Gamestop reveals the price of Vita memory cards, prompting an outcry.  Sony tries to reassure people by restating that they’ve learned little from the PSP’s launch.
  • Electronic Arts plans to put action-horror game Dead Space into an FPS, a space shooter, and an Uncharted-a-like.  Also in the works: collectable card game, rhythm game, and multiplayer.  And speaking of multiplayer…
  • …rumor has it that Dragon Age 3 may join Mass Effect 3 in that regard, likely some kind of battle arena.  My question: how many hats are involved?
  • Tetris on iOS will feature a subscription service.  Is any comment really necessary on this?  God, I hope not.
  • GamePro dies and goes down the tubes.  We shall forever remember its sage advice – its tips, if you were – given from the pros themselves.
  • AMD gets out of the PC processor market to focus on mobiles, I turned 30 this week, and more!

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Endless Gouging Phenomenon’ »

What Happened This Week – New Generation, Same Tricks

Howdy-howdy! Slowly getting back to a working schedule, though still suffering connection issues. Making some progress on my end, or at least narrowing down the problem. But enough about my griping, we’re here for the news! News, and the joy of shows about time-travelling quad bikes on YouTube.

Gotta love Klyka, man. Anyway, let’s get at it:

  • Sony is reportedly beginning work on game concepts for the yet-unannounced PS4, with an expected release window of 2014…
  • …while Microsoft looks to debut the “Xbox Next” at E3 2013. Also, Fable will get a chance to disappoint people on the Next.
  • A Gamasutra interview on Rage sparks… rage. The writer responds, arguing that being potentially blacklisted for a pointed question or two is kind of an overreaction.
  • Blizzard offers up a side of Diablo III free with $180 worth of World of Warcraft. Such a deal! Blizzard, throw in Warcraft 4 or the rest of Starcraft II and we’ll talk.
  • Speaking of tie-ins, Mass Effect 3 teams up with Battlefield 3 to prop up the latter gain early access to the ME3 multiplayer demo. Maybe they’re hoping BF3‘s multiplayer mojo will rub off or something.
  • Namco Bandai is set to publish Ni no Kuni in Rest-of-the-Worldia, Yoshida says more about FFXIV, Batman: Arkham City opens up fresh DLC wounds, and more!

Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – New Generation, Same Tricks’ »