News

News 25/5/10: “What the dickens happened at the end of Lost?” edition

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Now that I’ve expressed my repressed dismay on the subject of TV’s most eminent cop-out finale, we can get on with some interesting tid-bits of news to let our palettes savour. I’ve been deep in my childhood wild west fantasies for the last few days, which Read Dead: Redemption allows me to indulge, so I should have a review up for that in the next few days, and as you may have noticed, it’s causing quite stir with shortages on PS3, fulfilled expectations of high sales numbers and even Irish newspapers protesting against its loveable Irish drunk. Anywho, I felt it necessary to put something up here while I prepare my review so here’s some information with which you may temporarily satisfy your never ending hunger.

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Pre-3

With the year’s biggest trade show just around the corner, rumours concerning large announcements at E3 are flittering about interwebs unchecked. So to get our heads straight and prepared for this maelstrom of promised-filled gaming news, I’ve decided to roundup what we know, and what we don’t have a clue about.

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So out with big guns first: It was rumoured last week, by MCV that, the PSP 2 would make it’s debut appearance at this year’s E3, but after some digging from the likes of VG247, supposedly reliable sources reveal that they are “99%” sure that it isn’t setup for an E3 reveal, but it is supposed to have 3G capabilities, 2 cameras and a very powerful processor. Word on the street, or rather behind closed developer’s studio doors, is that it’s actually due for an early 2011 launch, as games are currently being developed in the UK as we speak. Either way, it’ll be certainly interesting to see what the fat cats at E3 have to say.

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Also in the journalists’ sights is Capcom, who according to a recent episode of Weekend Confirmed podcast, have a “bombshell” to drop at E3, and speculation points to either a reboot of a classic franchise that will utilise Project Natal or Devil May Cry 5. Personally, I’m crossing my trembling fingers for the former, as Capcom has some truly fantastic franchises in the cupboard, and lets face it, Devil May Cry 4 failed miserably, so I’ve not got high hopes for that white haired buffoon for a 5th outing.

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To add to the hype, EEDAR boss Jesse Divnich, in an interview with Game Informer, predicted that Rockstar would be at least teasing GTA V at E3, for a possible release in 2011. He also noted that it’s unlikely any exclusivity deals would be drawn up this time round because Microsoft’s attempt’s with GTA IV wasn’t particularly successful, and there are other franchises in the market now standing as tall if not taller than GTA, thus an exclusive deal with for the PS3 or Xbox 360 would do much less to affect hardware sales. Although this leans towards dubious and seems to be complete speculation, it’d be foolish to ignore such a man’s predictions, so stay tuned for Grand Theft Auto: Glasgow.

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On The DL

Some believe these digital downloads are the entire future of games, while others call bullshit, but either way, developers of all shapes and sizes are keen to sate your appetite for their franchises with extra content, so here’s what’s worth looking forward to spending your so-easily disposable income on.

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Firstly, the ever-dependable Bioware, via Casey Hudson told us that the alleged “Star Wars of this generation” Mass Effect series would bridge the story gap between 2 and 3 through downloadable missions. We’ve not really seen anyone use DLC as an instrument to advance narrative in any meaningful way, so as long as Bioware continue to deliver the goods at a reasonable price, we may witness the very evolution of the way DLC is to be handled. The Overlord DLC, including an entire new planet for you to prance around in your space boots on, is heading for Xbox Live in June.

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Also very much on my radar, or should I say in my torchlight, is the sharp implement-filled Alan Wake, which is to receive its first DLC July 27th, “The Signal”, cutting Remedy’s development time record by about 500%, with promise of a second instalment on the way, named “The Writer”, thanks to an opportunistic screenshot of a glitch in the Alan Wake online store. Turn all your lights on and keep looking behind you for my exceedingly, but fashionably, late review in the next few weeks.

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Finally the folks, at least the few left, over at Infinity Ward have announced and detailed the second map pack for Modern Warfare 2, Resurgence, at the same price with the same distribution of maps, headed deployment on June 3rd. Resurgence includes Vacant and Strike from CoD 4, and three new maps by the names of Trailer Park, Carnival and Fuel.

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CoD: Black Ops

Now MW2 is all well and good, but most would agree that it’s starting to loose its edge, and along with all the drama concerning Activision, it’s very nice to see Treyarch, the underdog of the Call of Duty licensing deal, produce something pretty kick ass, with the announcement of Call of Duty: Black Ops. The trailer below, put simply, is thunder-fucking awesome, and of course, although we must be rational and remember it’s just a trailer, it seems like Treyarch are doing their best to capitalise on all the bad press over Modern Warfare 2. To put salt on the wound Black Ops will have dedicated servers, an issue which caused a debacle back when it was announced this would not be the case for MW2. It appears Treyarch are putting a lot of effort into a brand new multiplayer class system, new vehicles and even a streamlined matchmaking system amongst other things. More info to be thrown our way in due course; Call of Duty: Black Ops launches on November 9th.

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And Finally…

I’ll leave you with this completely unrelated video, which I can justify posting, purely because it’s so gut-wrenchingly hilarious. Curtains please.

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May 24th, 2010
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