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E3 Microsoft Bringing It Home

Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to attend E3 this year – instead, I’m on vacation in Cape Cod, using awful hotel Wi-Fi to watch streamed press conferences. Not the most glamorous way to take it all in, but exciting announcements, great games and new details are welcome no matter how you hear about them.

Here’s my personal transcription (in very brief form) of all the announcements and showings, along with some reflection on what Microsoft had to show.

Click to continue reading E3 2007: Microsoft’s Press Conference Recap And Impressions

Gallery: E3 2007: Microsoft’s Press Conference Recap And Impressions


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DescriptionFor all of you out there that HAVEN’T been furiously searching through the Xbox Live Marketplace for new content, the fact that the Blue Dragon demo is now live may have passed you by. Well, that’s why we’re here. Don’t you love us?

Downloads seem to be a little slow right now (I’m at about 11%), and the fact that tons of new video content from Disney is also available now probably isn’t helping. Speaking of which, on an aside rant, how in the HELL did Microsoft convince Disney to allow HD Disney content on Xbox Live? I mean, Disney is staunchly pro-Blu-Ray, putting them in the camp of top Microsoft competitors Sony and Apple. And Steve Jobs is on the board of directors of Disney for chrissake! I guess all that D Conference “Steve Jobs and Bill Gates sittin’ in a tree” stuff wasn’t just for show.

Anyway, yeah… go downlad the Blue Dragon demo now!

Read More | Xbox.com

Gallery: E3 2007: Blue Dragon Demo Available for Download NOW


Blue Dragon boxIf you’re a JRPG fan with access to nothing more than an Xbox 360, then things have been a bit slow going. That’s an understatement… since release, you’ve gotten nothing more than Enchanted Arms, which is arguably not all that good. But worry not, because a JRPG is coming to the U.S. next month in the form of Blue Dragon. Originally released in Japan late last year, Blue Dragon has gotten a tremendous amount of attention due to Hironobu Sakaguchi –creator of the Final Fantasy series.

Those wanting to give Blue Dragon a try before plopping down the cash for a copy will have that opportunity, as a 1.1GB demo is going to be available for download from July 20 – August 3.

Gallery: Blue Dragon Demo To Be Launched On July 20, Game Releases On August 28


Hellgate London fight scene

The latest issue of Games for Windows Magazine has revealed all the details pertaining to the subscription service Hellgate: London will be sporting. Luckily, previous statements proved to be true as online multiplayer will be free for all players. Beyond that, there are some perks that may warrant paying the monthly fee of $9.95 to become an ‘Elite’ player, but casual players should find the free game to suffice. If Hellgate turns out to be anything like Diablo, it’s going to suck in a lot of unsuspecting people and get them to fork over that subscription fee.

Click to continue reading Hellgate: London Subscription Multiplayer Details Revealed

Read More | Games for Windows Magazine via Voodoo Extreme

Gallery: Hellgate: London Subscription Multiplayer Details Revealed


GamerAndy LiveWe are back with another episode of GamerAndy Live! This week GamerAndy, GamerEdie, and Gear Live‘s Andru Edwards are behind the mic, bringing you a fresh dose of this week’s gaming news. Be sure to hit us up on the forums and let us know what you think.

SHOW NOTES FOR EPISODE 79:

  • A recent ruling by the Copyright Royalty Board threatens Internet radio and independent musicians by increasing costs to webcasters by 1,200 percent retroactively…and even for non-RIAA music. Please send a letter to your representatives to help reevaluate this Draconian and dangerous decision!
  • Sony throws party to celebrate God of War II. Great. The centerpiece of this event? A partially decapitated goat—and guests are invited to reach into the still-warm body, grab handfuls of offal and eat it. Good lord, what were they thinking?!? (Warning: Photo slightly NSFW in the United States for slight nippleage.)
  • Edie discusses the relative difference of “titties,” “boobies,” “boobs,” and “tits.” Andy defines “gazongas.”
  • The Xbox 360 Elite: Does Andru care? Does Edie?
  • Hironobu Sakaguchi (Red Racer, Final Fantasy) + Ken Kutaragi = BFF? Apparently not.
  • Speaking of Krazy Ken: He’s gone. Sony doesn’t want him, and neither does Nintendo, apparently. Sayonara, Sony! Konnichiwa, Mickey-Dees!
  • Andy goes into more detail about his recent PS3 purchase… and it’s not pretty. Andru and Edie also discuss the possibilities for Playstation Home, both pros and cons.
  • Edie still hearts her PS2, and Bully.
  • Andy rails about Kotaku’s recent habit of using countless internal search links in their stories—frustrating as hell, he says.

Gallery: GamerAndy Live! Episode 79: Sony Happy Goat Time


Baiten KaitosIt looks like Nintendo is moving to grow support for more traditional Japanese RPGs – while having the new Dragon Quest XI appear on the DS is a pretty big coup, and Square has been supporting Nintendo with Final Fantasy remakes and side stories, it would be nice to see more diversity on Nintendo’s platforms. It was announced today and reported by IGN that the company has moved to acquire an 80% stake in Monolith Soft, developers of the popular Xenosaga and Baiten Kaitos. Bandai Namco will still hold a 16% stake in the company. This move would effectively seem to make the company an exclusive developer for the Wii and DS, but no new game announcements were made at the time of the news release.

Read More | IGN

Gallery: Nintendo Acquires Monolith Soft From Bandai


Dragon Quest XI Website Kotaku is indicating that in contrast to past shows, Nintendo will be exhibiting at the upcoming Tokyo Game Show. Typically the company has maintained its own separate shows, preferring to have an exclusive arena to advertise their upcoming software and hardware. This year, though, will apparently bring Nintendo to the show floor; according to Kotaku, the company is committing to this presence largely due to Square Enix showing off Dragon Quest IX for the Nintendo DS. This huge event, apparently, is enough to overcome Nintendo’s general avoidance of the show; having Nintendo and the latest Dragon Quest at the show may mean mayhem for show attendees.

Read More | Kotaku

Gallery: Nintendo To Have Booth At Tokyo Game Show


Pokemon DiamondComing this Sunday April 22, Pokemania will officially hit the US again. The fourth generation Pokemon game, Pokemon Diamond and Pearl is set to be unleashed on the gaming public, nearly nine years after the first North American release. While initially considered a fad, a generation of gamers has literally grown up with the Pokemon franchise. Today Nintendo revealed that the two games have received over 533,000 pre-orders, twice those of the previous release. Early feedback seems to indicate that the games balance the tried-and-true battle gameplay of the originals with appropriately updated graphics and strong Wi-Fi support. Expect this title to easily hit one million sold, and continue to drive the DS juggernaut in the US.

Read More | Reuters

Gallery: Pokemon Preorders Top 500,000


Opoona

Koei has offered up some new details and images from their new “lifestyle RPG” and exclusive Wii title in Japan. Scheduled for release in that territory this summer, the RPG is quite a departure from the Dynasty Warrior franchise. The RPG’s look is definitely on the cute side; beyond its looks, though, appears to be an interesting gameplay system – the game is completely controlled through just the Wii nunchuck controller. The new screenshots hint somewhat at the background story and environments the player can expect, and show a few in-game combat screens. No mention has been made of a localized release, but this seems like the kind of unique title that might do decently on the Wii in the US.

Read More | GameWatch

Gallery: Koei Offers New Opoona Screens


Nintendo’s Super Paper Mario ships today, and so far the game is tacking up a 90% overall rating on Gamerankings.com. From some of the major game sites, 1up rated the release an 8.0, citing the title’s relative lack of depth compared to its Paper Mario siblings, tacked-on Wiimote controls, and some slowdown evidenced in gameplay. IGN rated slightly higher at 8.9, feeling that the platformer and RPG merger was more successful and that the Wiimote controls felt appropriate for the game, but they felt the amount of writing in the game disrupted the flow, and the 3D elements seemed barren compared to the lushness of the 2D world. Nintendo has also kicked off marketing the game with a “Wii Would Like To Play” TV commercial, shown above.
Read More | 1up

Read More | IGN

Gallery: Wii Would Like To Play: Super Paper Mario


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