According to insider reports from VentureBeat, Google’s $1 billion buyout of game streaming service Twitch which was previously hyped up in May is now apparently a done deal.
If the information is correct, it would mean that Google own a serious monopoly on game streaming, having already acquired YouTube in 2006 for $1.65 billion…which in the modern day seems like a bargain. Twitch currently has over 50 million active users; for what it is worth, Twitch has declined to comment on the rumors
A report from the Associated Press claims that a new world record has been set for the largest gaming collection in the world. Michael Thomasson from Buffalo, New York has amassed an incredible personal collection of 10,607 games, eclipsing the previous record set in 2010 by Richard Lecce of 8,616.
Featured in a two page spread in the newly released ‘Guinness World Records 2014 Gamers Edition’, Thomasson revealed that he has amassed his collection over a period of 31 years on a $3000 a year budget, from the Collecovision right up to the present day, and that remarkably he has already sold his collection twice to finance the purchase of a Sega Genesis in 1989 and to fund his wedding in 1998. He has estimated that his current collection is worth anywhere between seven and eight hundred thousand dollars.
Speaking on his playing habits however, Thomasson confirmed that he hasn’t played every game in the collection due to time constraints – working as a college teacher in Boston teaching 2D animation and the history of video games means that in his own words, “I probably get three hours of playing in a week…If I’m lucky.” Continue reading WEEKLY NEWS UPDATE FOR 23RD – 29TH DECEMBER→
An unexpected Nintendo Direct broadcast midweek brought some unexpected surprises, none moreso than Hyrule Warriors – a collaboration of The Legend Of Zelda and Toei’s Dynasty Warriors series coming soon for the Wii U (check out the trailer below). Could this be the first Dynasty Warriors game that will be non-repetitive? Don’t be foolish – however the team up does suggest that Nintendo’s previously announced intentions to get its legendary IP’s involved with other developers may be more than just smoke and mirrors.
Among the other headline announcements were new DLC packs for Sonic: Lost World based around Yoshi’s Island and Zelda, the continuation of the Year Of Luigi with Dr. Luigi heading to the eShop on January 15th 2014 in Europe, and a confirmed European release date for Professor Layton Vs. Phoenix Wright on the 3DS of March 28th 2014.
And while we are no closer to having a release date for the next installment of Super Smash Bros, a new character has been confirmed in the form of Princess Rosalina and her companion Luma from Super Mario Galaxy. Perhaps more excitingly, the game will also feature a stage based on everyone’s favorite twisty-turny racetrack, Rainbow Road from the Mario Kart series. Continue reading WEEKLY NEWS UPDATE FOR 16TH – 22ND DECEMBER→
Thousands of videos on YouTube featuring gameplay footage have been flagged following the instigation of new scanning features. Google, who own YouTube, is using a new Content ID system that automatically flags content in breach of copyright, and many users who regularly upload gaming content have been caught out with any potential revenue generated from the video being redirected to the owner of the copyright.
In spite of these new measures, a number of developers have moved to support the content creators; Blizzard (World Of Warcraft, Diablo), Capcom, Deep Silver and Ubisoft have all claimed that they wish for content from their games to remain on the video sharing site and that they did not call for the cull of videos. Most recently Valve has also given its blessing to non-commercial videos.
The legality of gaming videos and the content within them has become a thorny issue this year, following Nintendo’s announcement that they would receive a portion of advertising revenue from clips featuring their games. YouTube have invited users affected by ‘invalid’ Content ID claims to get in touch Continue reading WEEKLY NEWS UPDATE FOR 8TH – 15TH DECEMBER→
A few days ago, I completed my long belated playthrough of Star Wars: Knights Of The Old Republic (expect a review soon) and today while I had a free moment at work I found myself musing over which game from my rapidly expanding Steam library I should tackle next. As I considered this, another thought popped into my head; KOTOR is the third game that I’ve completed in the space of just under two months, the other two being The Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time and Grand Theft Auto V. Each of these games have required a reasonable investment of anywhere between twelve to forty hours apiece to complete, and initially I couldn’t work out where I had managed to find the time alongside a six day working week. And then in a moment of genius, the answer hit me:
The Humble Bundle service is one of the best things I’ve come across in gaming in the last year or so – its a website which every now and again will organize a collection of great games, usually from indie developers, and ask contributors to pay what they want for them (a minimum payment of $1 or its equivalent is required). The setup of the bundle then allows you to split your payment between the developers, site maintenance or a chosen charity that the bundle is sponsoring – so, gamers get a great deal, and in the process they get to contribute in some small way to good causes.
I myself have picked up some of the more recent bundles; the fifth bundle (considered by many to be the best) contained the likes of Bastion, Limbo, Amnesia: The Dark Descent and Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery, while THQ and Telltale Games have also been generous enough to put their games into excellent bundles. This newest bundle, however may well prove to be the most popular yet – its the Humble Origin Bundle!
Yep, EA are offering some of their best games in a move to support not one, but five different charities. The games on offer are Dead Space, Crysis 2, Mirror’s Edge, Medal Of Honor, Burnout Paradise: The Ultimate Box and Dead Space 3. Pay above the average, and you’ll also get The Sims 3 and Battlefield 3 thrown in for good measure. And if you don’t have Origin installed, then the first five games also come with a key for activation on Steam.
As of writing, with twelve days left to go, the Origin Bundle has already raised over $4 million, a terrific effort by any means. If you want to support charity and get some EA goodness, head to www.humblebundle.com and purchase your bundle now!
I apologise for starting a review so bluntly, but it seems that whenever I have witnessed Mass Effect 3 being mentioned in conversation, it is the finale that is the immediate point of contention. Rarely has the conclusion of a game been so poorly received; Bioware were only just cleared of a ridiculous court case that claimed that the game broke advertising rules by not giving players a satisfying ending based on their playing history with the franchise. The thing is though, it’s really quite sad – because ending aside, Mass Effect 3 is an excellent game and has much to praise. Continue reading Beyond The Finale, There’s A Game In There – Mass Effect 3 Review→
And so the dust has finally settled on the main conferences at the Electronic Entertainment Expo; over the last two days Microsoft, EA, Ubisoft, Sony and Nintendo have all held their annual E3 media pitches. As with last year, I was furiously typing all the way through the conferences making notes, and below is my quick round up of all the relevant stuff from the two days. Continue reading E3 2012: Notes From The Five Conferences And Reaction→
Last night, Electronic Arts (EA) held an investor call in which several details of upcoming titles were revealed. Below is a quick list of the most important stuff to note from the meeting:
It seems to have been quite a good year for EA on the financial side of things – say what you want about their money grabbing schemes with stuff like Online Passes, but the output of games last year was solid, and sales from titles such as Battlefield 3 and Star Wars: The Old Republic have led to an overall revenue of $5.4 billion; $1.2 billion of which was purely from digital sources such as Origin, EA’s online distribution service
More importantly for gaming fans, we can look forward to a few more titles in the upcoming months. The latest instalment of Need For Speed is set for release sometime around Christmas as per usual. Given the lacklustre response to The Run, here’s to hoping that we will get another game in the same vein of quality as Hot Pursuit.
Football fans like myself should also be anticipated FIFA 13 in the same time period. Series producer David Rutter has promised an updated player impact engine, better ball control and revamped free kicks amongst the major changes for the latest version of the best football game on the market.
The investor meeting also heavily hinted that there will be a third Dead Space game, widely expected to be under the helm once again of Visceral Games. Expect more details of this game to be released at the upcoming E3 conference.
Finally, we have a more concrete release date for the new SimCity, which I am very much looking forward to. Before yesterday we had to guess when it would arrive in 2013, but now the promise of a release in the final quarter of this fiscal year (January to March for those of us not blessed in the ways of accountancy) means the wait becomes only slightly less unbearable.
Sim City 5 was officially yesterday announced at GDC (Game Developers Conference). Hell yeah!
The new title, which is being simply called ‘Sim City’, will be developed by the series creators Maxis (the geniuses behind the ridiculously successful The Sims series as well), and is slated for a 2013 release on PC. The game will incorporate a new engine called ‘GlassBox’, and will be the first fully 3D entry into the franchise. EA, who own Maxis, had the following to say:
“Sim City is a true rebirth of a franchise that brings the depth of simulation that has been the series hallmark for more than two decades and marries it with next generation accessibility and a robust multiplayer mode, giving players the power to change a world together.”
They were also kind enough to release a teaser trailer, which you can see here. Now if you will excuse me, I’m off to install Sim City 4 again and destroy my perfect communities with hurricanes…
UPDATE: If you are a fan of The Sims 3, it’s currently on sale on Steam for just £10.99. Snap it up before the offer runs out at 4PM Pacific Time on Thursday