Just a day after EA’s announcement about how they don’t have a single title in gestation for the Wii U, a bold employee uses the social megaphone that is Twitter to clue us in as to why.
Credited as a Senior Software Engineer and having been with EA since 1999, Bob Summerwill has since sweept his Twitter account of controversy. You can still check out Bob’s heated, but disarmingly honest, comments on EA and Nintendo’s relationship hereabouts. Among them, Summerwill criticizes Nintendo for running shop like it’s still 1990.
“They should have ‘done a Sega’ and offered Mario/Zelda as PS4/Durango exclusives.” That’s my favorite, if you were wondering.
You’d figure those in the industry would temper their opinions when speaking on an immensely public platform what with the whole Adam Orth catastrophe fresh in everyone’s minds, but I’m not complaining. I wouldn’t have “Done a Sega” otherwise and…I simply don’t want to live in that world.
EA: Absolutely Nothing in the Pipeline for Wii U
Here’s the byline bouncing around this evening: Despite EA announcing an “unprecedented partnership” between itself and Nintendo at E3 circa 2011, the game publishing giant has revealed it currently has no games in development for the struggling Wii U.
That oath, made while CEO John Riccitiello had a clasp on the company’s reigns, manifested in several ports of popular titles — Mass Effect 3, Need for Speed: Most Wanted, and Madden included — that long since had homes on the Xbox 360 and PS3. According to EA’s spokesperson, Jeff Brown, those handful of ports encompass the whole of their Wii U partnership, ensuring future blockbusters such as Battlefield 4, FIFA, and Madden 25 won’t be making it onto Nintendo’s newest console.
Having that waterway dry up — the”waterway” here referring to one of the biggest third-party publishers in the world — further shoves Wii U into a rough corner. But, as Kotaku illustrates, ever since the first Wii third-parties have had a hell of a hard time finding success on Nintendo’s systems. Usually Nintendo’s first-party hits take up the lion’s share of sales while third-parties are left to scavenge for scraps. Follow that with Nintendo’s increasingly upward slope of a fight to put their hardware in gamers’ homes, and even the big boys like EA are turning their back to the Japanese monolith.
Business is business, however, and EA isn’t likely to give Wii U the lifetime shunning if the system starts to perform well. Hell, EA might even be threatening a drought just to incite Nintendo into shaping up and narrowing their focus on pushing their console. Just a musing. Ultimately, time — and your dollars — will tell.
John Carpenter Interested in a Dead Space Film?
With a sixty-five year resume spanning the likes of The Thing, Escape From New York, Christine, and the original Halloween, I don’t have to explain to you why director John Carpenter is a silver screen legend.
Carpenter has some crazy range when reviewing his career — films like They Live and Big Trouble in Little China prove just how far out there the filmmaker’s mind goes — but his cinema doctorate is undoubtedly in horror. So as a former twelve-year-old entranced, excited, and terrified by this man’s many instant classics (Prince of Darkness will alter your moral fiber), an internal geek-bomb goes off when I hear John Carpenter is interested in making a Dead Space movie.
A longtime supporter of video games and their unbound potential for storytelling, Carpenter likens the appeal of Visceral Games’ survival horror title to 1979’s Alien (a hit-you-in-the-eye-it’s-so-apparent influence on the games). “The first game was more - I guess it was like Alien - but not quite. It was a little different than that,” says Carpenter.
“I maintain that Dead Space would just make a great movie because you have these people coming onto an abandoned, shut-down space ship and they have to start it up and something’s on board. It’s just great stuff.”
Way back when the first Dead Space game was making waves, a feature film was being optioned with director D.J. Caruso attached. Formerly, Caruso worked on the Shia LaBeouf vehicles, Disturbia and Eagle Eye. That deal eventually lapsed and fans’ dreams of seeing Shia step into Isaac Clarke’s rig — I can’t even finish that sentence; nobody fucking wanted that.
Dead Space has found its gore laden way into just about every avenue of media — comics, novels, animated films, toys — but hasn’t carved a path through Hollywood yet, and Dead Space 3’s less than stellar sales do little to endorse an adaptation. That hasn’t deterred Carpenter, though. “I would love to make Dead Space, I’ll tell you that right now,” he says. “That one is ready-made.”
Preemptive Strike: EA Registers Domains for Battlefield 13 Through 20
Don’t mistake this for news in any way. This isn’t EA jumping the proverbial gun and announcing plans for sixteen-plus years of Battlefield games. EA can be overzealous, hell, yes, but precognitive? No. I don’t even think Activision sees a twenty-year forecast for their own military shooter/money printing machine.
What’s happened here is an interesting case brought to you by none other than the information age. Thanks to an enterprising third-party hoping to trick you into their clutches one day, the domain names for Battlefield 10 through 12 are bought up and out of EA’s hands.
Not used to being pushed around by that bastard internet (unless we’re voting, of course), EA’s legal team went on a shopping spree, buying up domains ranging from Battlefield 13 all the way to Battlefield 20. Battlefield 5 through 9 are already in the company’s pocket.
Think they might be playing it extremely on the cautious side? Tell you what. In the distant future, when you’re amped up about Battlefield 21 and decide to check out the official site for trailers using your brain’s internalized wifi and merely thinking about the link brings you to a website dedicated exclusively to neon-irradiated dongs, their horrific glowing emissions, and the everyday objects those emissions melt…EA will still probably be voted Worst Company of the Year for wholly unrelated reasons.
Back in modern times, where radioactive dongs are simply hypothetical (…but for how long?), Battlefield 4 is expected out for current and next-gen consoles this Fall.
Rare Footage of Free Radical’s Battlefront III Hits the Web
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…LucasArts royally fucked up by cancelling one of the most impressively ambitious Star Wars titles to date.
It’s not uncommon for games to get the axe during development. Whether they’re low profile concept pieces that simply can’t gain the right traction or big budget affairs no amount of money can fix, sometimes a publisher needs to stiffen their chin, eat their losses, and squash a title.
But Star Wars: Battlefront III, a true successor to the Battlefront name developed by the studio formerly known as Free Radical (a team pooling years of experience from properties such as the original GoldenEye and the TimeSplitters series), was uniquely cut down by LucasArts — having had a fresh regime change up the ladder — when the game was reportedly an inch near completion.
Now, with LucasArts’ full dissemination brought on by new owners Disney, we’re likely to never play BFIII…But at least you can see it in action. The video above is a few minutes of alpha stage footage of the game, and while the gameplay is very reminiscent of its predecessors, there’s a few truly standout innovations on display including flashes of a more cinematic story and the mindblowing ability to go from ground level to stratosphere to docking in a star destroyer all in real time.
The six minute vid here not quite enough (of course it isn’t)? Weep over a full hour of footage hereabouts.
MGS: The Legacy Collection Skipping 360; “MGS4 is Just Too Enormous”
Despite both Metal Gear Rising and the Metal Gear Solid HD Collection making the jump to Xbox 360 without a hitch, Konami’s newest box set, Metal Gear Solid: The Legacy Collection, will release as a PS3 exclusive. The reason? The hefty inclusion of MGS4 and its landslide of data.
Series mastermind Hideo Kojima recently cleared up the matter, which is apparently an issue of storage. “I’m sorry to say an Xbox 360 version isn’t being released,” said Kojima. “Because an Xbox 360 version of MGS4 hasn’t gone on sale. To explain the situation, the amount of data in MGS4 is just too enormous.”
Sony’s lean on Blu-Ray media meant Kojima Productions could stuff as much content as they wanted back in 2008 when the closing chapter in Solid Snake’s saga dropped into stores. Porting the game to the Xbox 360’s DVD format, on the other hand, meant the developers would have to stretch their magnum opus across seven separate discs…Significantly more work than it was worth, unfortunately for Xbox fans.
And compromise in this situation would mean an incomplete package for collectors. “If we released a version on the Xbox 360 without MGS4, then it’s not The Legacy Collection,” said Hideo. Don’t give out hope completely, though, Microsoft loyal. Kojima hasn’t ruled out the next Xbox as a potential home for the collection…So call it a maybe before never rolls around.
“The Ghosts Are Real” - New Cast, New Engine, Next-Gen Call of Duty
And now for the announcement that surprised no one today: Activision has officially revealed Call of Duty: Ghosts, this year’s entry into the military shooter franchise, releasing November 5th and headed up series creator Infinity Ward. That much anyone without internet access knew already thanks to some critical leaks.
What we didn’t already know is sure to excite fans, especially those growing tired of the series’ baby step amount of “innovations.” Ghosts is slated for release on both existing consoles as well as Sony’s PS4 and Microsoft’s soon-to-be-unveiled Next-Box. Because of this, Infinity Ward is using an entirely new engine for the game, finally retiring the one powering the last seven hundred Call of Duty’s.
Despite Infinity Ward’s involvement, Ghosts isn’t a follow up to Modern Warfare 3. The game features an all new cast of characters within a brand new setting. “Everyone was expecting us to make Modern Warfare 4, which would have been the safe thing to do,” said IW executive producer Mark Rubin. “But we’re not resting on our laurels.” Rubin explains that the transition to newer hardware was the perfect opportunity to reintroduce the world to Call of Duty through a new branding with new ideas.
Just what those new ideas are is up in the air. The first official trailer for the game is a live action teaser featuring precisely zero gameplay. But Activision promises way more, including actual gameplay, will be shown off right alongside Microsoft’s Next-Gen reveal event taking place on May 21st. Till then, here’s a corporate byline to make you feel all fuzzy on the inside:
“Infinity Ward is going all-in to create the next generation of Call of Duty worthy of the world’s greatest fans.”
Call of Duty: Ghosts Confirmed and, Better Yet, Dated
New promotional art circulating stores the likes of GameStop (I’ve never heard of ‘em; must be small time) has outed the latest installment of Activision’s annualized FPS breadwinner.
Once again under developer Infinity Ward’s reigns, Call of Duty: Ghosts, which is more than likely to have an official May 1st reveal, was also dated by the retailer art for November 5th of this year, falling in line with the release dates of the umpteen titles before it.
Not just an exceptionally badass subtitle, Ghosts is rumored to improve on the aging shooter’s formula through the addition of destructible environments (‘bout time), increased mobility options such as a new slide n’ shoot maneuver, and tweaks to smaller components like loading segments becoming playable.
The promotional art keenly fails to name which consoles this seeming Modern Warfare offshoot is coming to, but initial reports heavily suggest Activision is taking a multi-generational stance and launching Ghosts on both current and forthcoming systems. Personally, I’ll be watching closely how Acti looks to handle the shaky bridge between now and the next-gen, especially considering one of their first ventures will be their biggest franchise. More to come, folks, as this one develops.
GTAV: Three New Character Vignettes Showcase Crime, Violence, and Killer Tunes
The great, big shakeup in Rockstar’s newest Grand Theft Auto entry revolves around three hapless, crime entrenched denizens who vary drastically in personality — Michael is a retired gun, Franklin’s an upstarting gangster, and Trevor is a hillbilly lunatic — but each look to carve their own bullet riddled path through the heart San Andreas.
The game lets players hop between the three protagonists on the fly as their stories weave in and out of each others. So how about we get a closer look at this trio of sociopathic, carjacking goons? It’ll be a downright bonding experience.
GTAV arrives for the PS3 and Xbox 360 September 17th. You’ll know it’s here when you see everyone on your friends list playing absolutely nothing else.
Konami Confirms Metal Gear Solid: The Legacy Collection for PS3
Fans of the engrossing, albeit extremely convoluted, Metal Gear Solid series lit up like one of Snake’s cancer sticks when the franchise’s creator Hideo Kojima took to Twitter and teased us with this mysterious box art. Featuring several incarnations of Snake both Naked and Solid — for the uninitiated, I apologize for your horrible confusion — the imagery hinted at the possibility of yet another gathering of the stealth-espionage games following 2011’s MGS HD Collection.
Today, Konami confirmed the artwork is for The Legacy Collection, a PlayStation 3 bound box set that groups together eight pivotal entries from the decades old franchise, slated for this June. Here’s the lineup:
- Metal Gear Solid
- Metal Gear Solid 2: HD Edition
- Metal Gear Solid 3: HD Edition
- Metal Gear Solid 4: Trophy Edition
- Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker HD Edition
- Metal Gear Solid: VR Missions
The HD remaster of MGS3 is based on the Subsistence re-release of the game which included the MSX versions of Metal Gear and Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake, rounding out Legacy’s roster to eight installments of warfare philosophy and crafty box disguises. The collection is a few PSP games short of a complete deck and Nintendo’s ironclad license over The Twin Snakes means that lost gem has likely sunk with the Gamecube.
But as far as continuity goes the Solid saga is well represented, and if you’ve somehow managed to live and act like a gamer without having played a single title in this historic series, the Legacy Collection is a great way to nuke that problem.