WEEKLY NEWS UPDATE FOR 21ST – 27TH APRIL

Headline Of The Week

It has been a productive week on the speedrunning front; that is, the art of completing a game as quickly as is humanly possible. In particular, two heavyweight titles from the N64 era have been dispatched at a spectacular rate.

First off, ‘Cosmo’ set a new world record by completing The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time in just 18 minutes and 40 seconds (roughly the amount of time it took me to work out how to get past King Zora alone), and later on in the week ‘Siglemic’ bettered his own record time on Super Mario 64 by a scant seven seconds, collecting all 120 stars in 1:43:54. Footage of both runs are available on Twitch for those interested.

If that has put you in the mood for more speedruns, then you might be interested in the recently released schedule for Summer Games Done Quick, to be held between 22nd-28th June.

In Other News…

BioWare have taken the wraps off of Dragon Age: Inquisition, which now has a set launch date of October 7th 2014. The reveal was made in a new trailer which allegedly features in game footage.

Inquisition is the third game in the franchise, following on from the acclaimed Dragon Age: Origins and the much despised Dragon Age II. It will be released on both current and next gen consoles, and producer Cameron Lee has stated that BioWare are working hard to make sure the games have a similar level of visual quality.

Inquisition’s main rival in the fantasy RPG genre, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, has been pushed back to 2015.

The Game of the Year Edition of TellTale Games’ award winning The Walking Dead is set to come to both PS4 and Xbox One.

According to listings on US website GameStop, the GOTY edition (already available for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360) which features all five episodes from the first season of The Walking Dead and bonus episode 400 Days will arrive around 17th/18th June for approximately $30 – which would make it another example of a current gen game being ported over to cover some quite obvious gaps in the summer release schedule for both the PS4 and Xbox One.

Of all the spin-off titles from the Final Fantasy series, the oddly spelt Theatrhythm for the 3DS, where players perform various rhythm based actions to the music of the main games with cutesy versions of the protagonists and antagonists, is one of the most compelling to play. The good news for fans of the game is that the sequel, Theatrhythm: Curtain Call has been confirmed for a release in the Western world.

Featuring over 200 songs and 60 characters (triple and double the numbers of the original), Curtain Call also introduces new gameplay modes and will lift assets from projects outside the main games, including Mystic Quest and the film Advent Children. It will be once again exclusive to the 3DS and will be released at a non-specific date later this year.

On the whole, Windows 8 has been a step back for Microsoft. The OS prided itself on an arrangement of tiles in the main menu to allow access to applications (with the intention of its widespread use on mobile and tablet devices), but users have forever lamented the lack of a traditional Start button, and both iOS and Android devices have outstripped sales of Windows devices by roughly a billion fold. According to a report from The Verge, Microsoft have finally cracked and will be adding the Start Menu back to Windows 8 in a August update.

A decision perhaps made too late to appease those put off by Windows 8? Most probably

A decision perhaps made too late to appease those put off by Windows 8? Most probably

As you can see above, the Start menu for 8.1 mixes the design on the menu used for both Vista and 7 with a smattering of tiles and buttons from 8. The update also appears to allow apps to run in a more traditional window setup on the desktop. There are rumours however that these changes will fall back to be incorporated into Windows 9, anticipated next year as a quick fix for those disillusioned with Windows 8/8.1

Shockingly, a new FIFA game (albeit a spin-off title in the shape of 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil) was held off the top spot in the week of its release in the UK. Instead, Titanfall stays at the top for a second week in a row. I would heavily anticipate that as the football season draws to a close, combined with a weak release schedule for games this summer outside of Watch Dogs, that World Cup will have long run at the summit.

Trials: Fusion enjoyed a solid debut at No.7, while the PS4 version of Final Fantasy: A Realm Reborn meant the MMORPG snuck back into the Top 20.

Top Ten For Week Ending 19th April 2014 (from GFK/Chart-Track)

1 – Titanfall (Respawn Entertainment/Bluepoint Games)

2 – 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil(EA Canada)*

3 – Lego: The Hobbit (Traveller’s Tales)

4 – FIFA 14 (EA Canada)

5 – Call Of Duty: Ghosts (Infinity Ward)

6 – SouthPark: The Stick Of Truth (Obsidian Entertainment)

7 – Trials: Fusion (Red Lynx)*

8 – Minecraft: Xbox 360 Edition (4J Studios)

9 – The Lego Movie Videogame (Traveller’s Tales)

10 – Plants vs Zombies: Garden Warfare (PopCap Games)

(* signifies a new chart entry)

And Finally…

As the discovery of E.T cartridges in a New Mexico landfill shows, humanity is only too capable of letting things from the past slide – perhaps that is why I have such an interest in History; at least someone needs to be remember what has happened, right?

In a bid to ensure that we don’t lose sight of all the games that have been created over the past forty odd years, an ambitious user on 4chan called Data_baser is attempting to collate an enormous list of every game ever created. Even all those 10-in-1 games for the Game Boy that you would see being sold for 50p at a Skegness indoor market.

Providing that your internet browser can survive the initial load of the Pastebin page where the data is being compiled (4MB of plain text is your reward), then you can see over 43,000 games which have been alphabetized. Apparently there is a list with over 100,000 titles as well, but that list is chaotically organized. I for one would be delighted if this project comes to fruition; not only because of the impressive scope of the project, but if done correctly it could become a very useful reference tool for gaming studies in general.

In the meantime, take a few minutes to do this challenge – think of the most random game you’ve played, and see if it’s on the list. Bet you can’t find one that isn’t there…

 

 

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