1up is reporting that Microsoft is lifting the 50 MB size cap for Xbox Live Arcade downloads. Citing anonymous sources, 1up states that the new maximum size for Arcade games can now be as high as 250 MB. With special dispensation from Microsoft, content can become as large as 650 MB. Officially, Microsoft is denying the changes to their program. However, it is known that Konami has already received an exception for Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. Microsoft’s reasoning for the 50 MB limit was initially to provide Core system users access to Xbox Live Arcade content, but with a 256 MB Memory Card coming, this limit may no longer be necessary. The changes to the file limitations may in part be related to the competition; Sony has no such limits for their downloadable content, and Microsoft may feel that additional resources for Xbox Live Arcade titles may be necessary to keep up.
Read More | 1up
Siliconera has pored through the ESRB online rating database again, and this time it looks like a couple of potential Xbox 360 Live Arcade releases have leaked. The database is listing Final Doom and Ultimate Doom as “M” rated titles for the Xbox 360. With Doom standing as one of the few Arcade titles with strong online play, it would seem to make sense to take advantage of all the extra content available from the franchise.
Read More | Siliconera
Team 17’s Worms has been rumored to be hitting Microsoft’s Xbox Live Arcade service soon. Supposedly the title will sell for 800 points with the possibility of future downloadable add-ons. While the release date of the title is still unknown, HD screenshots of the 2D turn-based game are now available on Xbox Attitude. The most recent 2d entries in the series were somewhat mediocre on the DS and the PSP, and neither supported Internet play; a fully multiplayer version on the Xbox 360 that returns to the series’ roots would be a welcome addition.
Read More | Xbox Attitude
Microsoft dropped a couple of media alerts today, first announcing that Contra will hit Xbox Live Arcade this Wednesday. For 400 Microsoft Points, gamers will be able to download the game, which will feature an original game mode plus an enhanced mode with updated graphics and sounds. The game will also feature online multiplayer, allowing two player co-operative gameplay either over the Internet or locally.
Microsoft also announced six new classic titles from Atari, including: Centipede/Millipede, Battle Zone,Asteroids/Asteroids Deluxe, Missile Command, Tempest, and Warlords. Battlezone will include new graphics, multiplayer modes like Deathmatch and Capture the Flag, and support for the Xbox Live Vision camera. Other titles like Missile Command and Tempest will also see visual updates. Hopefully the graphical updates to the classic titles will go way beyond the “enhancements” gamers have seen on Namco’s classic titles.
Read More | Contra Media Release
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Microsoft is making a download of their opening announcements for the start of X06 in Barcelona available at Xbox.com. Microsoft announced a new game in the Banjo & Kazooie franchise coming from Microsoft Game Studios. For Xbox Live Arcade, Microsoft announced that Doom would be available starting tonight on Xbox Live Arcade. Other Live Arcade games announced include:
- Sensible Soccer
- Ultimate Mortal Kombat
- Small Arms
- Assault Heroes
- Heavy Weapon
- Settlers of Catan
In terms of upcoming games, the Japanese RPG Blue Dragon will be available in the US and Europe in 2007. Bungie will have an announcement about Halo 3 by the end of the year. Project Gotham Racing 4 was officially unveiled. Rockstar announced that Grand Theft Auto IV will have two exclusive episodes available for download on Xbox Live. Ubisoft demonstrated Assassin’s Creed interactive gameplay for the first time ever. Bioshock was announced as an Xbox 360 and Windows exclusive. Lost Odyssey was confirmed for the US and Europe, with a trailer showing some of the battle gameplay. More than 500,000 gamers downloaded the Lost Planet demo, and both multiplayer and single player gameplay will be available on the show floor. Splinter Cell: Double Agent footage was shown, and the sequel will be exclusive to the Xbox 360 and on Windows.
The Xbox 360 HD DVD was confirmed to be available in Mid-November 2006 in Europe and the United States for $199.00 US, 199.99 Euros, and 129.99 British Pounds. The package will also include remote, and for a limited time King Kong on HD DVD. Moore also discusses Microsoft’s Games for Windows initiative, and indicates that Windows Vista is still on track for a January 2007 release. Moore also revealed the first preview of Marvel Universe: Online for the Xbox 360 and Windows.
Peter Jackson spoke at the presentation and announced that he has formed a partnership with Microsoft Game Studios. His first project will be an interactive entertainment title set in the Halo universe, apart from Halo 3 and the upcoming film, and Jackson will also be creating a new interactive game series based on original IP. Finally, the presentation wraps with a trailer from a Halo real-time strategy game from Ensemble Studios, called Halo Wars.
The video should be available online soon on Xbox.com at the link below, and should be available as a download via Xbox Live.
Read More | Keynote Summary at Xbox.com
Read More | Xbox.com
Microsoft just conducted their Tokyo Game Show presentation, and Kotaku was able to live-blog the event. Some of the key announcements include:
- Core System, Hard Drive, Live Vision Camera, and Wireless Headset availability on November 2nd
- HD DVD drive to be available on November 22nd, for 20,790 Yen (~$176)
- HD DVD drive will support full 1080P.
- Xbox Live Arcade Titles: Yie Ar Kung Fu to be Japan exclusive. Gyruss, Rush’n Attack, New Rally-X also announced for Live Arcade.
- Dead or Alive Xtreme 2 will ship November 15 in the US and November 22 in Japan
- Peter Moore promises 50 exclusive titles for Japanese market
- Tri-Ace’s upcoming Infinite Undiscovery gameplay was not shown
Kotaku has a bunch more detail from the conference. It certainly looks like Microsoft is still actively trying to penetrate the Japanese market, but even with all the hardware and software announcements, they still do not have a really compelling offering for the Japanese gamer.
Read More | Kotaku
The guys over at 360gamesaves.com have discovered that Xbox Live Arcade titles will execute from CD/DVD-R media, if the correct directory structure is burned. Now, the titles will still run in trial mode, unless the console owner has previously purchased the content. For gamers without the Xbox 360 Hard Drive, though, this may be a good way to play around with the trial versions of Arcade titles if they have a friend willing to download the games and burn them to disc.
Read More | 360gamesaves