WEEKLY NEWS UPDATE FOR 15TH – 21ST SEPTEMBER

Headline Of The Week

It’s been a busy and for the first time in quite a long while, positive, week for fans of Final Fantasy. Alongside a gorgeous trailer of Final Fantasy XV released at the Tokyo Games Show and the announcement that Hajime Tabata is to replace Tetsuya Nomura as director on the game (a game which one should remember has now been in development for eight years), Square Enix have launched a cloud based gaming system called Shinra Technologies – which fans of the much loved seventh game in the series will be able to appreciate.

Headed up by former Square Enix president Yoichi Wada, Shinra promises cloud gaming and giant cannons for all...

Headed up by former Square Enix president Yoichi Wada, Shinra promises cloud gaming and giant cannons for all…

Avalanche Studios (the developers of Just Cause) and Ubisoft have already pledged their support to the system, which aims to utilize enormous CPU and GPU databanks for highly ambitious projects and will enter beta testing in the US and Japan in early 2015.

Finally, Final Fantasy XIII, along with its sequels XIII-2 and Lightning Returns, are heading to Steam. The first game will go on sale on October 9th, with the sequels following in Spring 2015.

In Other News

Here’s a quick roundup of other stories emanating from TGS 2014:

– As expected, Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain vowed the crowds with a new 20 minute presentation. As well as showing off how Big Boss will be able to call upon allies such as the sniper Quiet when on missions, the video also showed off rock climbing, confirmed that the enemy AI is as dumb as ever by taking on inflatable decoys, and a horse got attached to a fulton balloon. Also, Boss has a wolf with a eyepatch for a pet. I’m sold.

D4 (Dark Dreams Don’t Die), the Xbox One exclusive project from the creators of cult classic Deadly Premonition, enjoyed some good promotion by having one of the stealthiest reveals of recent times – pretty much as soon as a demo was shown, the first episodes of the game were made available to purchase!

The Great Ace Attorney, the next title in the Ace Attorney series that spawned Phoenix Wright, will be primarily set in England. As Phoenix’s ancestor, Ryuunosuke Naruhodo, learns about the British legal system, he will run into legendary sleuth Sherlock Holmes and his assistant Watson – who has somehow become a pink haired eight year old girl…

– And Monster Hunter 4 is getting some seriously awful Sonic DLC costumes…

 

'Squeaking around at the speed of sound'

‘Squeaking around at the speed of sound’

Persona 4 Arena Ultimax is to arrive in Europe by November, as Sega have correctly decided that European players should get in on the fun too.

It marks the first time that Sega will distribute an Atlus game since they acquired the studio last year for $140 million; a process which will hopefully become a regular occurrence. For reference, Persona 4: Arena took over a year to arrive in Europe following its European and American debuts, due to the fact that Atlus do not have a European base of operations.

A fan made remake of Elite is to be re-released for free to celebrate the game’s 30th anniversary. Elite: The New Kind was originally released back in 1999, but was removed from download in 2003 when the co-designer of the original game, David Braben, requested that the game be taken away for copyright reasons. Now the other co-creator, Ian Bell, has given his permission for the game to return after praising the efforts that went into the remake:

“The programmer Christian Pinder has done a great job of recreating the Elite gameplay experience.

“I hope it’ll bring back good memories to those who loved the game first time around, and help new players understand what made Elite so significant in the history of computer games.”

You can find Elite: The New Kind for download or browser play on Ian Bell’s website.

Microsoft has announced an Xbox One controller that will come with PC functionality straight out of the box.

With the magical ‘Cable for Windows’, users will be able to utilize the otherwise identical controller via a USB port on their computer. Existing Xbox One owners can still use their controllers either via a micro-USB cable or by installing the drivers for the controller on their PC…which frankly makes the new controller seem really unnecessary. Especially it if retails for the barmy price of $50, which is currently being quoted.

No prizes for guessing that Destiny is the new leader at the top of the UK Game Sales Chart this week, posting the biggest new IP launch in UK history. Interestingly, despite the hardcore advertising for the game by Sony which has typified much of the buildup for the game, sales were split equally across PlayStation and Xbox consoles.

The release of the game did however prompt a spurt in sales of the PS4 in the UK, with week-on-week figures jumping by 300% as the Xbox One also enjoyed increased output in sales. Elsewhere, The Sims 4 dropped a place to 2nd, and NHL 15 had a decent debut in 7th.

Top Ten For Week Ending 13th September 2014 (from GFK/Chart-Track)

1 – Destiny (Bungie)

2 – The Sims 4 (The Sims Studio)

3 – Watch_Dogs (Ubisoft Montreal)

4 – Call Of Duty: Ghosts (Infinity Ward)

5 – The Last Of Us: Remastered (Naughty Dog)

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

7 – NHL 15 (EA Canada)

8 – Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare (Popcap Games)

9 – Minecraft: PlayStation 3 Edition (4J Studios)

10 – Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm Revolution (Cyberconnect2)

And Finally…

After four years and more than 2000 uploaded songs, the Rock Band Network has finally stopped accepting submissions. Although previously released songs will still be available to purchase, no more content will be released; the news was confirmed by developers Harmonix on a forum post, and they paid tribute to the outgoing service with the following quote:

“Even if we had been able to anticipate the level of enthusiasm, we certainly couldn’t have predicted that the RBN authors would generate a body of work that so quickly eclipsed the official Harmonix output.”

Official DLC updates for Rock Band ended in April 2013 as the final ripples from the music-game craze floated away, and the Network has now been shut down as Harmonix allocates resources to other projects including the recently crowd-funded Amplitude and the upcoming Disney collaboration Fantasia: Music Evolved. The main theme of Fantasia was actually recently given a world exclusive first play on Classic FM of all places, as they hosted another two hour video game special on Saturday – give it a listen before it goes offline.

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