Starting last Friday, the prerelease bonus pack for the upcoming Guild Wars expansion is available for purchase. By picking up the bonus pack, you’ll receive exclusive in-game items and access to the Sneak Peek Weekend, which is taking place from August 24 – 26. The game is set for release on August 31 and is the first expansion Guild Wars is receiving – all three previous titles were independent (albeit connected) of one another, whereas Eye of the North requires that you own at least one of the previous Guild Wars titles.
In addition to the sneak peek and in-game items (which are the Glacial Blade, Hourglass Staff, and Darksteel Longbow), you’ll also receive a Guild Wars Trilogy Trial DVD, which provides you with either 10 hours or 14 days (whichever comes first) of gameplay in the first three Guild Wars titles. Not a bad way to lure in a friend if you already own them.
The Guild Wars: Eye of the North prerelease bonus pack is available at retailers, NCsoft’s online store, PlayNC.com, and the Official Guild Wars online store.
Here’s a quick rundown of what we learned about Hellgate: London as I got a tour of a few levels with Tyler Thompson, Flagship Studio’s director of technology.
Release date: Still shooting for summer 2007 - which, let’s face it, is right now. According to Tyler, “We’re still working for that. If it takes a little bit longer, then we’ll let it take a little bit longer.” In industry speak that means, “If you don’t see it by August, you’ll see it for the holidays.”
Look: Flagship Studios, at its top levels, is populated by ex-Blizzard brains, including Diablo creators Erich Schaefer and David Brevik (and don’t forget Bill Roper, who played an integral role in the Warcraft, Starcraft and Diablo series). So, think Diablo, but much, much better looking. Tyler told me that the game is in the alpha stage. I’m used to seeing games in alpha looking a bit rough around the edges. This game was, in the levels he toured me, free of jaggies and visual glitches. The word that comes to mind is “shiny.” I found it to be very reminiscent of Diablo in look and feel. Of course, bear in mind the tour was guided, which means I only got to see the best looking areas.
The biggest improvement in look, and, ultimately, playability, is the improved camera from Diablo 2. Gone is the fixed, third-person isometric camera in favor of 360-degree, fully rotational viewing.
More after the break.
Story: Post-apocalyptic teen ventures out of underground vault in which he’s been born and raised to find his dad and his fate in new-post nuclear world. Mutants, animals and humans hate you.
Setting: Washington DC, both downtown and outskirts.
Look: It’s Bethesda. Of course it looks good - for a post apocalyptic world. Very cool mix of art deco and post-modern ‘50s kitsch.
More after the break.
I’m a huge, huge fan of Unreal Tournament – I have been ever since the original was released on PCs nearly a decade ago. It’s about time we got a true sequel, as opposed to the incremental upgrade of Unreal Tournament 2004 (it’s been what, nearly five years since the true sequel in UT 2003?). The gameplay footage above focuses on vehicles quite a bit, but you can tell that this is still the same fast-paced, crazy shooter that made the original game so special. I can’t wait for some next-gen Instagib.
Posted by Chris Pereira Categories: Activision, CAPCOM, E3, Eidos, Electronic Arts, LucasArts, Microsoft, Nintendo, Nintendo DS, PC, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Portable/Mobile, PSP, SEGA, Take2, THQ, Ubisoft, Wii, Xbox 360
Sure, the convention is much smaller this year and all, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t a ton of games to be seen. Eurogamer has posted a list of the announced lineups and then some of what you’ll be seeing at E3. Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony have been quiet on what they’ll be showing, so it looks like we’ll need to wait until their respective showings to know for sure. The event is taking place next week, so expect it to be a busy week in news.
But please, please, please, Nintendo, show me Animal Crossing Wii. Something. Anything. Please?
Read More | Eurogamer
Some big name titles are hitting this week, including the much anticipated The Darkness for both Xbox 360 and PS3. Transformers is bound to be a big seller by virtue of its name and the number of platforms that it’s coming out on. And Pokemon Battle Revolution for Wii is going to sell a scientifically accurate 1,432,345^100, or in other words, a metric crapton.
Read More | Gamasutra
Take Two is in what we call a pickle. Manhunt 2, set for release on July 10, has received a preliminary ESRB rating of Adults Only. Initially, this was believed to be a major problem due to the fact that some major retailers – such as Walmart – wouldn’t carry the game. Walmart composes a significant portion of the videogame retail market, making the AO rating a major blow.
Then came word that Nintendo doesn’t allow AO-rated games to appear on its systems. In other words, no Manhunt 2 on Wii, or at least not until the game receives a lower rating.
But as with books, television and movies, different content is meant for different audiences. That’s why the ESRB provides ratings to help consumers understand the content of a game before they purchase it. As stated on Nintendo.com, Nintendo does not allow any AO-rated content on its systems.
How about Sony, who was supposed to see the game land on both the PlayStation 2 and PSP?
Currently it’s SCE’s policy not to allow the playback of AO rated content on our systems.
So where does this leave Take Two and Rockstar? They’re left with a very limited number of options, none of which are particularly attractive.
I hate Games for Windows Live. I love the potential, but currently I think it’s a horrible, horrible excuse for an online system. It’s completely gimped in comparison with Xbox Live, and ultimately worthless right now; I could go on and on, but frankly it’s just not ready for mainstream use, and doesn’t warrant any sort of subscription fee. And as far as cross-platform play goes… so far, not the greatest thing in the world. And I’m not the only who thinks so – in an interview with IGN, Infinity Ward’s Grant Collier stated:
Our rep left us a message saying ‘hey, want to talk about this, Live Anywhere, it’s big, it’s cool’, and I thought, well yeah, if you’re playing online poker, but who wants to be playing an RTS on a console and have some guy on a PC clicking and dragging all his troops, attacking your base while you’re sitting there with your thumb sticks. So I think for FPSs and RTSs, no way, but for, y’know, card games or Tetris or something like that. There are games that I think it’s cool for, but there are other games where I don’t think there’s any point. So they just didn’t respond.
So if you’re looking for a safe bet to make with an uninformed friend, gambling that Call of Duty 4 won’t be featuring cross-platform play is about as safe as you can get.
For those of you who think Prince of Persia is a series that began last gen, you’re dead wrong. Prince of Persia was originally a PC title, developed back in 1989. Now the game is resurfacing as Prince of Persia Classic on the Xbox Live Arcade for 800 Microsoft Points ($10). The interesting catch to the game is that you’re required to save a princess… but in under 60 minutes.
The features list is exactly what you would expect from an XBLA game: improved graphics; new traps, puzzles, and enemies; 12 achievements; and leaderboards in three flavors – Normal Mode (complete the game as fast as possible, saving after each level), Time Attach Mode (start from the beginning if that princess isn’t saved in 60 minutes), and Survival Mode (complete the game in under 60 minutes without dying – good luck).
I have fond memories of first popping Myst into my computer’s CD-ROM drive (oh, how exciting it was at the time!) and exploring its incredible world. While it was only a point-and-click adventure, it still was incredible for its time. It was an experience, to be sure. And for the record, I’ve beaten it more than once - the fair way.
So imagine my surprise when my eyes came upon a press release stating that Myst was getting a remake, DS-style. The game is bound to have a pretty limited appeal, despite the fact that it’s being rebuilt specifically for the DS – a system that is simply the perfect platform for a game of this ilk. Fans will be excited to hear that a new age, known as the RIME Age, will make its way into the game.
While the press release has a sentence that might be a punch to the gut to many gaming fans – “Unlike most adventure games, Myst offers no inventory, no death, and no dialogue.” – it’s something that you really need to play to appreciate.