Well, E3 has come and gone, the convention center’s been cleared out, and it’s all over but the shouting. Who were the winners? Staggeringly few, it would seem. Who were the losers? All of us. Behold:
- Microsoft: You kids like Kinect, right? I hope so, because we don’t have a single new idea on stage today, so here’s a bunch of stuff you already knew was coming…
- …and also the SmartGlass, designed for people who can’t wait until after the show or game to look up supplementary trivia.
- Sony: Don’t worry guys, we’ll save E3! Look, David Cage is making another movie! And we’ve got Tomb Raider, Assassin’s Creed 3 DLC, and The Last of Us!
- The Vita? What’s that? Oh… ohhhh, right, we were supposed to market that! Oh god, we totally forgot! Quick, throw some Black Ops on there, they won’t know the difference!
- Nintendo: Pfft, amateurs. Here’s how you save E3: Pikmin, Mario, more Mario, the balance board, karaoke, and minigames! Bam, done! Just hand us your money as you walk out.
- What do you mean, “Where was the Zelda?” Look, uh… we’re, um, still working on that. Maybe there’s a Fire Emblem for the 3DS or something, I really don’t know. No more questions!
- Ubisoft: In spite of our utterly unlikeable hosts, we are the only company with a halfway decent gaming roster to show this year. This, ladies and gents, is the face of despair.
- My liver will never forgive me for all the drinking I put it through.
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Weird Acts of Corporate Theater: 2012’ »
If life in the retail trenches has taught me anything, it’s that those jobs are really more precautionary prison sentences. True, there’s no cell and there aren’t as many gang fights, but it’s a stain on your past nonetheless, and the longer you stay in the harder it is to get out.
This depressing thought brought to you in part by nostalgia, for which I have that April Fools’ burst of Toonami to thank. Damn but that was good teevee. Anyhow, here’s the news:
- GAME exits administration, having found a buyer
crazy enough willing to take on its debts.
- Sega, by contrast, announces a sizable drawdown in operations due to an income shortfall. Basically, don’t expect Valkyria Chronicles 3 in English anytime soon. Or ever.
- Meanwhile, Denis Dyack alternates between reassuring people that Too Human is still a thing, and warning that used games will crash the industry and kill your family in their sleep.
- EVE Online‘s developer partners with Nvidia to offer select video cards for virtual currency. I’d love to hear Paul Krugman’s take on this.
- Brian Fargo speaks out on the lopsided balance of power between publishers and developers. A lengthy interview on RipTen, but a good one: read it all here.
- Obsidian joins forces with inXile to help develop Wasteland 2, pending a Kickstarter goal of 2.1 million. So, when I write the check for all of my money, which of you do I make it payable to?
- An OMGpop developer explains why he balked at Zynga’s offer, Michael Pachter disregards a silly PS4 rumor, GOG.com gets a facelift, and more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Putting the Band Back Together’ »
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’ »
Hello hellooooo! Here’s hoping this brisk fall evening is treating you well, and you’re not smarting from not-insubstantial gambling losses like I am. As mentioned I’m still struggling with Comcast-related internet woes, which were enough to delay but not permanently forestall the news. So let’s get on it, shall we? Today’s lineup covers the following:
- Square Enix dropped a Final Fantasy-sized bomb by revealing the latest updates for Final Fantasy XIV, including a phase-in for the subscription service. Cue panic and ridicule.
- That said, the changes do sound pretty swank, and the full list is worth reading if you’re so inclined. The larger question is, who’s in a gambling mood?
- Speaking of wailing and gnashing of teeth, Mass Effect 3‘s multiplayer mode has caused quite a stir. Best guess: the co-op missions are likely just supplements to the main plot and risk feeling somewhat unnecessary. Further evaluation requires building consensus.
- Netflix tries to call backsies on that whole Qwikster thing, in the process raising the question of whether we’re even ready for nationwide video streaming. Short answer, no. Long answer, are you out of your mind?!
- Zynga comes up with Project Z, also known as “our back-up plan in case relations with Facebook turn south.”
- Rovio overvalues itself even more, Obsidian hires Tim Cain, Sega confirms Valkyria Chronicles 3 isn’t getting localized, and more!
Continue reading ‘What Happened This Week – Square Enix Goes Double Or Nothing’ »
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’ »