Saturday, June 18, 2011
06/18/2011 - Bloodrayne Model at E3
12:47 pm pdt
Model at E3 - Encounter with BloodrayneOur very own
Dr Gonzo has an up close and personal encounter with Bloodrayne at the 2011 E3 Expo.
By: E. Thomas
Thursday, June 16, 2011
06/16/2011 - Wipeout In The Zone Available Today
11:58 am pdt
No Controller Necessary For This Crazy Fun Family Game
THE BIG BALLS ARE BACK IN WIPEOUT: IN THE ZONE, AVAILABLE TODAY ON KINECT
FOR XBOX 360
MONICA, CA – JUNE 16, 2011 — Activision Publishing, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) and ABC Entertainment Group today announced that Wipeout:
In The Zone is now available on Kinect™ for Xbox 360®. Just in time for the summer season of
ABC’s hit show, Wipeout: In The Zone brings the same hard-hitting fun into living rooms across
America as only Kinect for Xbox 360 can.
Wipeout: In The Zone offers brand new courses
that are even more extreme than before. Tons of new obstacles including the Kinect-optimized punching copycat pose boards
and power pumps, plus old favorites like Big Balls and Sucker Punch, will test player’s limits in crazy and zany ways.
Sure, the goal may be to complete the course but the best part will always be the over-the-top, mind blowing wipe outs!
Up to four players can participate in the fun-for-the-whole-family party mode, complete with instant replays and close-ups
of the best wipe outs. When not running the course, players can wreak havoc on the participating contestant by hurling paintballs
from the sideline. Players have the ability to import and play as their own Xbox LIVE® online entertainment network
avatars or as one of the predesigned ones. Hilarious commentary throughout the game is provided by the always entertaining
Wipeout hosts John Anderson, John Henson and Jill Wagner.
“After the success of the first Wipeout
title, we are more than thrilled to be bringing another Wipeout video game to the interactive world, and this time
exclusively for Kinect,” said Nicole Armstrong, Activision Publishing. “Wipeout: In The Zone
utilizes technological advances in gaming to break down the living room walls and put gamers into a truly authentic recreation
of thrilling television.”
Matt Kunitz, Creator and Executive Producer of Wipeout, added, "When we created
Wipeout, we always felt it would make a great video game. It's exciting that the latest advances in technology allow players
to physically run the Wipeout course."
“We are thrilled to be continuing our successful relationship
with ABC and Activision,” said David Goldberg, Chairman of Endemol North America. “Not only is this new ‘Wipeout’
game filled with even more humor, spills and thrills, but now the entire family can play interactively with the new full motion
capabilities. This game introduces a new level of excitement for ‘Wipeout’ fans of all ages to play.”
Wipeout: In The Zone on Kinect for Xbox 360 is available now for MSRP of $49.99. This game
is rated “E10+” for Everyone 10 and older by the ESRB. Wipeout returns for a new summer season this summer on
ABC, Thursdays 8/7c. For more information, please visit www.activision.com.
Submitted By: E. Thomas
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
06/15/2011 - PopCap Auctions Game Art For Charity
2:18 am pdt
One-of-a-Kind Pieces Up For
Grabs with proceeds going to SpecialEffect UK and US contributions on display at Mash Clothing, Oxford Street
PopCap Auctions Game Art For Charity
15th June 2011 - Dublin, Ireland - PopCap Games, the worldwide leader
in casual games, today announced a series of online charity art auctions that will run until 12th July 2011 at www.ebay.com/popcap. The auctions involve the sale of 34 pieces of PopCap art – both original
pieces and one-of-a-kind commissions. Each weekly wave of seven-day auctions will consist of up to nine items, with all proceeds
benefitting both UK charity, SpecialEffect and Starlight Children’s Foundation in the US.
In the company’s
very first eBay charity auction, PopCap is giving consumers the opportunity to bid on once-in-a-lifetime items from the PopCap
vault and specially commissioned pieces of artwork inspired by PopCap titles.
The UK’s contribution to the
auction is DJ Brainz, a spectacular six-foot-by-six-foot graffiti canvas homage to hit PopCap’s
Plants vs. Zombies™ title. The huge and vibrant piece features a DJ’ing zombie and was created by Julian Johnson
of the London-based urban art collective, Graffiti Life. UK fans will be able to view Johnson’s piece, amongst others,
at top London skate wear shop, Mash Clothing at 73 Oxford Street, London W1D 2EP, from today.
With the help of
Kompolt, an auction management firm for charities and non-profit organisations, PopCap is giving consumers a chance to bid
on once-in-a-lifetime items from the PopCap vault in the very first PopCap eBay charity auction. The month-long series of
auctions will also include items such as original concept sketches from Plants vs. Zombies, Bookworm® and Peggle®;
game-themed ceramic sets; a six-foot-by-six-foot graffiti painting of a DJ’ing zombie; a blue neon Bejeweled® diamond;
personalised sketches and more.
“As videogames become as mainstream a lifestyle entertainment as watching
movies or reading books, game elements such as art and music are getting increased recognition at an artistic level –
and becoming collectible. We thought this was a good way for both PopCap to offer something truly original to fans of our
games – while also supporting children and young people in need.” said Cathy Orr, Senior Director, International
PR, PopCap Games.
As a truly global company, PopCap will donate 100 per cent of all proceeds from the auctions
to SpecialEffect in the United Kingdom and the Starlight Children’s Foundation in the United States, two nonprofits dedicated to helping seriously ill
and disabled children.
Dr Mick Donegan, Director and Founder of SpecialEffect, said: "SpecialEffect has
long been a fan of PopCap and their dedicated outreach to helping children in need. We’ve used several of their games
for the disabled young people we work with - a particular favourite being Peggle because with our specialist support, it can
even be played by young people who are paralysed – just by moving just their eyes ! An auction of this magnitude is
sure to not only raise the spirits of those winning the items, but also the spirits of those who'll be helped by the proceeds."
Since the company was founded in 2000, PopCap has donated money and games totalling hundreds of thousands of dollars
to support children’s charities including Make-a-Wish Foundation, Child’s Play, Children in Need, Childhaven,
Drawing Dreams Foundation, and Art with Heart among others.
For more information about the PopCap charity art auction,
Submitted By: E. Thomas
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
06/14/2011 - Atari Flashback 3 at E3 UPADATE
12:29 pm pdt
Atari Flashback at E3 UPDATE:It appears there has been quite a bit of controversy surrounding
our report on the Atari Flashback 3. In fact there seems to be quite a mystery developing around this product. Here is what
we can tell you so far.
As word spread across the internet about the Flashback 3 many gamers started to question
the legitimacy of the product. The original Atari Flashback consoles (Flashback 1, 2 and 2+) were designed by Legacy Engineering. It appears the Flashback 3 has not been developed by this prestigious group.
In fact the FB3 is merely an improved version, and I use that term loosely, of the Flashback 2. According to our sources this
console was made by an East Asian manufacturer, and it was officially licensed by Atari's licensing department. Unfortunately
the folks from Legacy Engineering were left out of the loop on the development of this product.
of the original Flashback series claim the new console does not use their much touted "Atari 2600 on a Chip" hardware.
In fact the FB3 may be using an alternative emulation method, similar to those found in many plug and play consoles. I will
say this, without being a technical expert, the games on the Flashback 3 seemed a bit off. (editor's
note: I'm a person who still plays original Atari 2600 games, on original hardware, on a regular basis.)
Although the exhibitor claimed this was an early version of the product, we were still dismayed to find a number of
different faults with the new Flashback 3. First, games are no longer organized by category, as they were with earlier Flashback
models. Games are now simply listed in alphabetical order. And much to our dismay, browsing was slow and somewhat tedious.
Another thing we noticed was the physical quality of the machine was much lower than that of the Flashback 2.
The Flashback 3 uses the same design and case molding at the Flashback 2. However the plastic on the new model feels much
cheaper and lighter than earlier models. Buttons also felt light and cheap and the spring mechanism seemed rather shoddy.
However the biggest flaw with this system was the controller. The controller was exceptionally light weight, feeling like
it could break in your hands at any time. The controller was also slow and unresponsive. This last part troubled us the most,
and its certainly a deal breaker for anyone looking for a quality retro console.
Unfortunately we were not allowed to take pictures of the console itself. (Not that we didn't still try.) However
we did take some shots of the box. We have since learned much of the information presented on the box is false. There is no
SD card support, and the saving and loading feature has also been removed. SD card support was certainly an exciting and enticing
feature of the new machine. We were told it was removed from the product because "retailers thought it would confuse
A European site that is also selling the FB3 claims that the new console has support
for uploading high scores to Atari's website and to Facebook. However from what we have seen, without SD card support
that will be impossible. And finally, although the exhibitors claimed the box was an early test shot, the text on the box
was filled with spelling errors and typos. And some of the games listed on the box were not on the console itself. The box
had the quality you would expect from a cheap Asian knockoff. (And surprisingly this was an officially licensed product.)
We have tried several times to contact Creative Mind Interactive, we even went to their office in downtown LA, but unfortunately they have been giving us the run around. Yesterday when we
spoke with the company they told us we could come down and see the product today. This morning when we called them again to
set up our appointment they claimed they had "sent the product back to China." We're not sure why the company
is suddenly being so flakey, but we suspect they are afraid they are carrying an unlicensed product. Creative Mind Interactive
is merely a clueless wholesale vendor from Downtown Los Angeles. There are many companies of this type located in downtown
We actually scoured the streets of Los Angeles looking for other vendors selling this product. Although we
have some good leads, so far none of our sources have the product in stock. We will be sure to update this article the second
we get our hands on the final version. As for now we can tell you the product is currently shipping from China, and its expected
to hit the United States in late summer, early fall. Please stay tuned for our next update.
Submitted By: E. Thomas
Monday, June 13, 2011
06/13/2011 - Casual Games Conference Scheduled for July in Seattle
10:22 am pdt
Sixth Annual Seattle
show to address the future and brutal truths facing the games industry
Casual Games Conference Scheduled for July in Seattle
Connect Seattle 2011
When: July 19-21, 2011
Where: Benaroya Hall, Downtown Seattle
About the show: http://seattle.casualconnect.orgHow to register: http://seattle.casualconnect.org/registration.htmlSEATTLE, WA – June 13, 2011 –
The Casual Games Association, the international trade organization of the casual games industry, today announced that Casual
Connect, the world’s largest conference focusing on mass market games, will take place July 19-21, 2011, in Seattle,
While 2010 will be remembered as the year that Facebook established itself as a legitimate gaming platform,
the future is not beholden to one distribution channel, one business model, or one type of game. This year at Casual Connect
Seattle, we will look ahead to identify new hurdles emerging, continue to foster innovation, push the creative and technical
barriers, and remain focused on the common objective of delivering an entertaining and engaging experience.
for the 2011 event will focus on emerging trends for the casual games industry and outline opportunities on online, social
and mobile platforms.
Speakers and Sessions
Casual Connect Seattle 2011 provides attendees
with the opportunity to explore cutting-edge casual games topics with the local and international leaders in the space. Selected
Lectures at Casual Connect have been programmed
to focus on cutting edge topics in the casual games space. Topics this year include:
- LeVar Burton, Actor and
- Paul Thelen, Founder, Chairman and CSO, Big Fish
- Peter Vesterbacka, The Mighty Eagle, Rovio
- Gareth Davis, Platform Manager, Facebook
- Jens Begemann, CEO, wooga
- Dave Roberts, CEO, PopCap
- Charles Yim, Strategic Partner Development, Google
- Andrew Sheppard, CPO, Kabam
- Raph Koster, VP Creative Design, Playdom
- Heiko Hubertz,
Founder & Co-CEO, Bigpoint
- George Donovan, CEO, Gogii
- Thomas Chung, VP, GM, The Playforge
- Jesse Redniss, SVP, NBCU
- Vivian Lee, Director of Strategic Partnerships, EA Interactive
- Jennifer Lu, Director of Business Development, TinyCo
Deo, CEO, Halfbrick
- Sean Ryan, Director, Games, Facebook
- Arjun Sethi, CEO, Lolapps
- Aki Jarvinen, Creative Director, Ph.D., Digital Chocolate
- Dan Chao, Lead Designer, Funzio
- Robert Tercek, President,
- Seth Ladd, Developer Advocate, Google
- Demetri Detsaridis, GM, Zynga New York
- Tim Chang, Principal, Norwest Venture Partners
A full listing of content can be found online: http://seattle.casualconnect.org/content.html.
- Beyond Play: Gaming in the Connected Age
- What It
Takes to Create and Manage Entertainment
- Winning in Social
Mobile: What it is and the future of Social Mobile games
to Make Your IP Work for You
- Challenging Social Success Conventions:
There’s more than one way to build successful social games
Game Security: Foiling the hackers
- Casual Games: The cross-platform
- Making money on Mobile Games
Submitted By: E. Thomas