Rumors

There have been a lot of rumors bouncing around the internet these days. Mostly surrounding the lack of anything tangible about Microsoft’s answer to the PlayStation 4. With Sony’s announcement of the PS4 last week everyone’s naturally been speculating about what Microsoft’s answer will be. Whatever their answer, it has to be good. Microsoft has been doing nothing but screwing up over the last few years with their online service. Right now they’re the only console that still charges for online service and if that weren’t enough they charge you again to use their useless web browser and again for Netflix (a service I already pay for). If they don’t shape up and pull something big out at their reveal show Microsoft is in hot water.

Come on Microsoft.

Come on Microsoft…

Perhaps most worrying is the rumor that the Xbox 720 (or whatever) wont support used games. In a console market that’s still focused primarily on disks as a distribution method this would be a stupid move for Microsoft. That’s why I think this particular one is false. If you think about it Microsoft doesn’t lose anything from used game sales. It’s the developers who are missing out on resale revenue from these games and Microsoft doesn’t have any IP in development. They have nothing to gain from this kind of move and a lot to lose since gamers would rather buy a different console if they’ll get the games for cheaper. The fact that Microsoft hasn’t denied this yet is worrying but it could be simply that they’re trying to keep all details under wraps until their reveal show.

The other big rumor circling the neXtBox is that Microsoft may be working on an exclusivity deal with EA. This could mean that Microsoft is courting the idea of only allowing EA games on the Xbox. It doesn’t seem to make a whole lot of sense because Microsoft would be greatly limiting the amount of games available on their system and like the rumor above, they have nothing to gain from that. On the other hand it might be that EA is looking at exclusively publishing their games on the Xbox. Once again EA would be limiting their market to their detriment. It seems like the only way this rumor makes any sense is if the Xbox 1080 is going to be EA’s answer to the Steam Box. Origin Box?

I’m already kind of iffy about buying another Microsoft console. My 360 crashes more than a drunken senior citizen with cataracts, after all. So if either of these rumors are true Microsoft is going to have to do something huge to earn my money back.

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Black Flag

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What ever happened to assassinating people? Back in the early days of Assassin’s Creed that was the focus of the game. They gave you a target and his location, then you had to find your own way to take him out. It was fun because it gave the player the freedom to find and execute their target, the agency to do what they want, how they want.

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Bonus Points: Realism in War Games

The Terran Republic has been pushed all the way back to its Warpgate when I arrive. Here, behind our indestructible walls my fellow red clad soldiers are massing for a counter attack. Fighters and gunships buzzer over head as Prowler tanks and APC’s gather together and prepare to burst forth onto the battlefield. The energy here is electric and I can tell everyone is eager for payback. I grab my trusty carbine and jetpack, unwilling to be left out of what will surly be an intense battle. A Liberator Gunship touches down close to me, looking to take on a few gunners for the coming battle and I jump on board. When the pilot takes off I can see for the first time the scale of what’s about the unfold. I’m awestruck. A column of hundreds of soldiers bursts forth from the Warpgate’s protective shield in tanks, APC’s, jet fighters, quad bikes and on foot. I watch from my Liberator’s belly gun seat with a mixture of pride, excitement and fury as each Prowler’s twin linked main cannon thunders to life. The surrounding New Conglomerate troops begin to turn and run as their Vanguard tanks explode and the line is broken. The siege is broken.

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Global Nerd Control

The internet is all a buzz about Gabe Newell and JJ Abrams talking about making a movie together. That in itself is enough to peak my interest but I have this feeling about JJ Abrams that’s been nagging at me ever since rumors started circulating that he’s going to direct the next Star Wars. I’m not saying that he’s going to do a terrible job with the movie, in fact, I trust that they’re going to be awesome but my feeling is this: Has JJ Abrams been given too much power?

Gabe Adams

I don’t mean power in the truest sense but Star Wars and Star Trek are two of the biggest series in geek culture and now one man is in control of both of them. Is that safe? Is it safe to trust all of that to one man? Something tells me it’s not. On the other hand, it might open the door for the next big thing in geek culture. But at DICE 2013 Yesterday we found out the JJ Abrams is trying to get his shiny fingers into yet another pie. At the keynote talk he and Gabe Newell admitted that they wanted to collaborate on a movie. All things considered, I’m pretty excited by the concept of a Half Life movie but once again JJ Abrams has been given another huge slice of the geek pie. All he has to do now is make an anime and he’ll have global nerd control.

There isn’t anything wrong with JJ Abrams’ work and he earned my trust with Star Trek. So the question arises: Could this be the first good video game movie? If Gabe trusts him I guess I do but in any case we’re going to have to wait a long while to find out. Abrams still has one more Star Trek movie to do after Into Darkness and after that he has to take his shot at Star Wars. One good thing may come from having to wait this long though. Maybe we’ll get to play Half Life 3 before it hits theaters.

Out of Control DLC

There has been a pretty massive reaction to Dead Space 3’s DLC fiasco in the last few days. Many gaming news agencies have reported on the issue already, calling EA out on the 11 items of day 1 DLC that will be made available when the game launches. Things like powerful weapons and a robot that collects resources for you. Contrary to many gamers, I don’t have a problem with day 1 DLC. It gives the developers something to work on while the game goes through its final testing and marketing phases. But I do have a problem with a lot of what EA has gotten into the habit of doing.

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5 Games That Need a Remake.

In the current generation of gaming, we’ve seen a ton of remakes. Devil May Cry, Tomb Raider, XCOM: Enemy Unknown to name a few. Not just in the games industry either, there seems to be a big push for remakes in film as well. Some of them good, some of them… not. However, being a spectator to this remake fever I have to notice a few oversights. Games that I think need to be revisited either because they weren’t given their just due when they released or because they’re just too awesome to let die.

5- Jet Set Radio Future

A game about graffiti and roller blading. What happened to games like this?

A game about graffiti and rollerblading. What happened to games like this?

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Warframe

If you haven’t heard of Warframe you hardly alone. The game has had little to no publicity over the last few months and everyone I talk to about it hardly even knows what it is. It’s sorely in need of some buzz so I thought I’d spend some time talking about it here. It’s a 1-4 player coop online game with some cool shooting and hack-and-slash gameplay. The premise is that you are a super awesome, badass, space ninja and you have to slaughter everyone infiltrate various space ships belonging to some inexplicably evil space army. It reminds me a lot of Vindictus, another 1-4 player coop hack and slash game and, like vindictus, the gameplay is less based on dice roles and more on your actual performance.

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