For the second year in a row, Nintendo is to again forgo a traditional presentation at E3 2014 in favour of a digital broadcast. Alongside the Nintendo Direct stream dated for the 10th June (the day after Sony, Microsoft, EA and Ubisoft’s presentations), there will be an invitational Super Smash Bros for Wii U & 3DS tournament between 16 ‘skilled’ (and totally not pre-selected) players at the Nokia Theatre in LA, and footage of the latest games will be broadcast by Nintendo Treehouse live and unedited from the booths on the showfloor.
In related Nintendo news, they really, really want you to buy the upcoming Mario Kart 8 – if you live in Europe and buy the latest installment of the kart racer, by registering your copy of MK8 on the Club Nintendo website before July 31st then you can get a digital download of The Legend Of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD for free. You could also pick from one of either NintendoLand, New Super Mario Bros U, Game & Wario, Pikmin 3, Sonic: Lost World, The Wonderful 101, Wii U Party, Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate or Mario & Sonic At The Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games…but you’d be an idiot to turn down Wind Waker HD. Continue reading WEEKLY NEWS UPDATE FOR 28TH APRIL – 4TH MAY→
Nintendo is to close down the Wi-Fi Connection services for all DS, DSi and Wii consoles on May 20th 2014.
The decision, which will affect all regions worldwide, means that online services including multiplayer, leaderboards and matchmaking will be permanently removed, although browser and shop functions (along with applications including YouTube and Netflix) will remain open. A full list of games that will be affected is available on Nintendo’s website, but among the biggest casualties are Mario Kart Wii, Super Smash Bros. Brawl and every Pokemon game from Diamond & Pearl through to Black 2 & White 2.
Nintendo have offered no comment on why the services are being shut down now, but common sense suggests that with the new versions of Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros. in particular set for release on the Wii U this year, the Big N wants people to upgrade to the new versions, and removing online functionality acts as a cattle prod towards the new games. Besides, if truth be told the aging Wi-Fi Connection was awkward to use and inferior to both PSN and Xbox Live for content. Continue reading WEEKLY NEWS UPDATE FOR 24TH FEBRUARY – 2ND MARCH→
The year of 2013 has been a busy one; between balancing the last year of my extended stay at University and finally entering the daily grind of the working world, time has gone by much quicker than I would have perhaps preferred. It’s important then to take the time for a brief retrospective, not only to supplement the lazy journalism that comes with the end of the year but because when I stop and think back, it has been another banner year for videogames. Continue reading Dazcooke’s Video Game Land Review Of 2013→
The Spike VGX event was live-streamed in the early hours of this morning, and it was an utterly abysmal mess of awkward jokes, ‘world exclusive’ announcements that had already been leaked prior and generally shoddy production. However, there were one or two announcements that made watching the three hour show a bit more bearable.
TellTale Games announced two new episodic projects that they will be working on in 2014; one based around the lore of Game Of Thrones(which had been previously rumored), and more unexpectedly a collaboration with Gearbox Software on a new installment in the Borderlands franchise, Tales From The Borderlands. The real show stealer however was a new project from Hello Games, an independent company based in the UK with just four members of staff, who unveiled the massively ambitious No Man’s Sky – a first person open-world space exploration adventure with procedurally generated worlds that reminds me heavily of the classic Elite.
After years of waiting, months of speculation, weeks of fan arguments and in some cases days of queuing, the PlayStation 4 has now finally launched in the UK and the rest of Europe – the eighth generation is here people! Of course the PS4 has already been available in North America for two weeks, but Sony still put in a effort to make the European launch of the console feel special; amusingly Sony managed to highjack Page 3 of The Sun ‘#4ThePlayers’, but the real highlight was seeing the 2000 year old Castel Sant’Angelo in Rome bathed in a frankly spectacular light show.
As I write this article there has been no information released with regards to sales figures, but it is expected that the PS4 will break the current record for the launch of a console in the United Kingdom; a record which believe it or not belongs to the PSP (185,000 units over three days in 2005). In the meantime while we await official figures, don’t be stupid and buy Killzone: Shadowfall in the PS4 Store – if you really want to buy a game for the eye-watering price tag of £52.99 that Killzone currently holds, make sure the disc is made of out diamonds and gold first. Continue reading WEEKLY NEWS UPDATE FOR 25TH – 30TH NOVEMBER→
The PlayStation 4 has now officially launched in North America. Because I live in the UK I would like to try and avoid covering too much next-gen console release news before the PS4 and Xbox One are actually out here in Europe, but of particular note at the American launch is that a small percentage of consumers are reporting that faulty HDMI ports are preventing them from using the console. Amongst the complaints were two consoles received by gaming news sites Kotaku and IGN, who both reported manufacturing problems that was making some of the pins required for HDMI connection unavailable. Other individuals have been discovering problems by using different cables to the ones provided in the box.
With release day edging ever closer, Sony have this week put together an ultimate FAQ of features the PlayStation 4 will incorporate – and it may appear to some to be a step back somewhat. Despite claims that the new console will offer 10 times the power of a PS3, at launch the PS4 will not support MP3’s or audio CD’s, and the ‘Share’ feature allowing gamers to upload clips of their gaming exploits will not be supported by YouTube (a feature also lacking on the Xbox One).
Sony Worldwide Studios boss Shuhei Yoshida has responded to criticism on Twitter hinting at possible changes in the future:
Thanks for the feedback to the lack of MP3 and DLNA support at the launch of PS4. I'll share with the PS4 Dev team for future consideration.
It is worth noting that several of the features that are currently available on the PS3 and Xbox 360 have been added post launch by multiple patches and software updates, so we might see the return of MP3 support et all soon enough. In the meantime, no custom FIFA soundtracks for you!
Last Friday, I popped down to London with a few mates to attend my first video gaming exposition; the Eurogamer Expo, held inside Earl’s Court. After humble beginnings in the Docklands just six years ago, the Eurogamer Expo has grown to become one of the most important dates on the British gaming calendar – and this year was all the more significant as the public got their first hands-on experience with the new consoles from Sony and Microsoft, the PS4 and Xbox One.
Well what a change in fortunes – E3 this year has been nothing short of excellent to watch. Whereas the past few conferences have been relatively staid, cautious and sometimes very awkward affairs, 2013 has seen E3 return to what it should be – a true gamers conference. Badly choreographed on stage segments are now seemingly a thing of the past, and while a lot of the content on show was pre-rendered footage rather than actual gameplay, the games themselves came thick and fast with plenty of new and fresh ideas in the mix. Also, with the PS4 and the Xbox One going up against each other head-to-head for the first time, we could anticipate that something special was going to be in the works.
The following report is not a completely in depth take on events (check your friendly neighbourhood gaming website for an intricate breakdown of what happened), but rather the things that I personally took away from the best E3 conference in years. Continue reading E3 2013 – Coverage Of The Conferences→