06-02-2009 - The Sims 3 - $49.99
06-02-2009 - The Sims 3 Collector's Edition $69.99
The Sims 3: Prima Official Game Guide (Prima Official Game Guides)- $13.59
* New Seamless, Open Neighborhood- Explore the neighborhood freely.
* New Create A Sim- Create any Sim you can imagine.
* New Realistic Personalities- Every Sim is a unique person, with a distinct personality.
* New Unlimited Customization- Everyone can customize everything!
* The freedom of The Sims 3 will inspire you with endless possibilities and amuse you with unexpected moments of surprise and mischief.
The freedom of The Sims 3 will inspire you with endless creative possibilities and amuse you with
unexpected moments of surprise and mischief. Create millions of unique Sims and control their lives. Customize their appearances and personalities. Build their homes - design everything from exquisitely furnished dream homes to quaint cottages. Then, send your Sims out to explore their ever-changing neighborhood and to meet other Sims in the town center. With all-new quick challenges and rewarding game play, The Sims 3 gives you the freedom to choose whether (or not) to fulfill your Sims' destinies and make their wishes come true.
Key Game Features:
* New Seamless, Living Neighborhood
Explore the ever-changing neighborhood—and take your Sims to meet friends in the park, go on a date at the bistro, visit neighbors’ homes, converse with less-than-savory characters in the graveyard and more. Who knows what might happen?
Admire the natural beauty of the beach, the mountains, and more.
* New Create a Sim Functionality
Create any Sim you can imagine with easy-to-use design tools that allow for unlimited customization of facial features, hair color, eye color, and more.
Fine tune your Sims’ body shape from thin to curvy to muscular.
* New Personality Traits
Create over a million different personalities with traits such as evil, insane, kleptomaniac,
romantic, and more.
Influence the behaviors of your Sims with the traits you’ve chosen. Will you create a neurotic
romantic with a heart of gold, or a geeky super-genius with an evil streak?
* New Unlimited Customization
Everyone can customize everything—design and build your dream house and decorate it to fit your
Customize everything from floors to décor, shirts to sofas, wallpaper to window shades.
* New Gameplay That’s Rewarding and Quick
Face short and long-term challenges and reap the rewards.
Your Sims can pursue random opportunities to get fast cash, get ahead, get even, and more.
Choose whether, or not, to fulfill your Sims’ destinies by making their wishes come true. Will your Sims be thieves, rock stars, world leaders? The choice is yours.
* Get Connected and Share Your
Creations with The Sims 3 Online Community
Get free bonus content—download Sims, outfits, furnishings, houses and more.
Create and Share Sims, houses, movies and more with anyone.
Join The Sims 3 community to share ideas with fans of The Sims from around the world.
The Sims 3 lets you immerse truly unique Sims in an open, living neighborhood just outside their door! The freedom of The Sims 3 will inspire you with endless possibilities and amuse you with unexpected moments of surprise and mischief. Your Sims can roam throughout their neighborhood,
visit neighbors’ homes, and explore the surroundings. They can stroll downtown to hang out with friends, meet someone new at the park, or run into colleagues on the street. If your Sims are in the right place at the right time, who knows what might happen?! New easy-to-use design tools allow for unlimited customization to make truly individual Sims. Determine your Sims’ shape and size, from thin to full-figured to muscular—and everything in between! Choose your Sims’ facial features, their exact skin tone, hair eye shape and color and select their clothing and accessories. Create realistic Sims with distinctive personalities. Select from dozens of personality traits and combine them in fun ways. The combination of traits you choose—brave, artistic, loner, perfectionist, klepto, romantic, clumsy, paranoid, and much, much more—help shape the behavior of your Sims and how they interact with other Sims. Your Sims can now rise above their basic set of every day needs.
They are complex individuals with unique personalities. Build your dream house or design the ultimate home. Customize everything from floors to flowers, shirts to sofas, wallpaper to window shades. It’s fun and easy to change colors and patterns giving you endless personalization options. Or you can populate your Sims’ neighborhood with pre-designed buildings and furnishings. Which of your Sims will live in high-end mansions, cool bachelor pads, ultimate dream homes or low-cost cottages?
Pre-order The Sims 3 (standard edition) and receive The Sims 3 music track "True Stories" by Datarock. Instructions will be e-mailed within 10 days of the game's release. Offer good while supplies last. Promotion valid only when sold and shipped by Amazon.com.
05-26-2009 - Damnation - PC ($36.99) - Xbox 360 - PS3 (both $56.99)
06-02-2009 - Delta Force: Xtreme 2 - $27.99
Bethesda's Fallout 3 seems to be planning possibly something just as big.
It's been said by Bethesda that in October this year, a retail version of Fallout 3 called Fallout 3 Game of the Year edition will be released. This will include Fallout 3, and all five DLC packs- Operation Anchorage, The Pitt, Broken Steel, Point Lookout, and Mothership Zeta. The Fallout 3 GOTY edition will be available for PC, Xbox 360, and PS3.
This might even be better than the Fallout Trilogy Pack that's out at the moment, which contains Fallout 1, Fallout 2, Fallout Tactics.
Fallout 3 Game Add-on Pack #1 includes The Pitt and Operation: Anchorage on a disc and will be available for Xbox 360 and PC on May 26.
The Fallout 3 Game Add-on Pack #2 includes Broken Steel and Point Lookout on a disc and will be available for Xbox 360 and PC in August.
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six is now available on GOG.com.
If you haven't played it, it is the progenitor of one of the best tactical shooter games ever. The game relies on strategy, planning, and most of the time, luck, with inconsistent AI and poor controls.
44 Years of the Fantastic Four - $20.00 - Save $7.99
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare Game of the Year Edition - $32.99 - Save $6.00
I played the original Sims back in 2000, and for hours I was lost in that game, as my friend and I would compete with each other to see who could build the biggest and best house on an unlimited budget.
In the end, I deleted his house and claimed myself the winner.
In fact, he was just as fanatical over the Sims if not more. He had a friend who collected all of the expansion packs, and he would “borrow” them and play them all in one big super-Sims game.
The Sims 2 was just as good if not better, and better looking to boot. The animation was far better than the original, and I found that the themes of the furniture and other stuff was more varied and grouped to suit the architectural personality. I liked building castles with stone walls and creating moats and walls. Overall, I enjoyed it more than the original.
Then, I met a guy who had a cupboard filled with all of the Sims games, gathering dust on the top shelf. I got excited as I hadn’t played most of the expansions for the original (and still haven’t), until I asked the question, “Do you play them at all?”
“Nah, they’re my sister’s. That’s kind of a girl thing.” He responded.
True, there were times while I was playing, and as I selected different shades of blue for the walls, and got a smile on my face as I saw the Sims interact positively with each other, that I thought, “Have I gone too far?”
It’s funny how we still have these gender roles and such, and stereotypes, even today. You’ve got the aggressive, assertive male (ooh, scary), and the caring, nurturing female. What about the loathsome metrosexual, everybody? The one who is only one facial or mud bath away from batting for the other side? Wasn’t that supposed to be the end, the tearing down of these walls that have stood for so long that dictate what is masculine and what is feminine? It’s just like the old saying, “What boys can do, girls can do better”. Well, I think in this day in age of gender equity, “What girls can do, guys can do just as good” is appropriate.
Some argue that it’s all down to how we see and play the game. Some people have a god complex, and like to have the lives of people in their hands, for better or worse. Then some are control freaks who like people to do things just so, or not at all. There are the tyrants, who like to cause mayhem and destruction, and the architects and engineers who rebuild after the dust has settled. Others like to escape into another world for a few hours to escape their real lives, and look on it as virtual wish fulfillment.
It’s all really down to an individual play style. Some like to load a game, while sobbing silently, if the oven catches fire and the house burns down, while others laugh maniacally while shouting “Burn you little trolls, burn!”
Now, The Sims 3 is nearly ready for release, set for June.
Recently I read an interview conducted by SACM with Mike McCabe, the Regional Head of Publishing for Electronic Arts Mobile. Right at the end, the last question asked was, “What titles can we look forward to in the near future?”
“The most exciting game coming out in the beginning of June will be The Sims 3. It’s appealing to a very broad demographic, as it’s skewed to a more casual, more female audience.”
But look at what’s happened recently. The Sims 3 has been leaked onto the net just weeks before its scheduled release, and is available on all number of sites like Rapidshare and other torrent portals.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t piracy more of a guy thing?
Developers: Epic Games, Digital Extremes
Publisher: GT Interactive (now owned by Atari)
Engine: Unreal Engine
Platforms: Mac OS, Microsoft Windows
Release date: May 22, 1998
On this day in gaming, in 1998, Unreal was released.
It was hailed as revolutionary due to its advanced graphics, competent enemy AI, and for its use of music modules rather than MIDI or CD audio. It was also hailed as a “Quake killer”, due to being released in the same six months as Quake II, and people claiming it was technically superior engine wise to id Tech 2 (Quake II).
The game has had one expansion pack, Unreal Mission Pack I: Return to Na Pali, which would be bundled together with Unreal later as Unreal Gold, an official map pack called the Fusion Map Pack which can be downloaded from the internet for free, a sequel in Unreal 2: The Awakening, and spawned a series of games in another series, starting with Unreal Tournament.
In addition to this, Unreal ended up spawning a series of Unreal engines by Epic Games, now at Unreal Engine 3. Many games have ended up using these engines, notably the Brothers in Arms series, Rainbow Six series, and Duke Nukem Forever.
Companies such as Unreal FX took their name from the game.
Not bad for a game developed in a garage for over three years.
Games also released on this day:
Red Faction- May 22, 2001 (PS2)
It's nice to dream, but I'm not sure how likely this is, since it's seemingly just a rumour. 3D Realms has other things to worry about now with the Take-Two lawsuit threat looming over its head. But it might be a possibility if DNF were ever to get out sometime, seeing as 3DR is a much smaller company now that the team working on DNF is gone.
Black & White 2: Battle of Gods Expansion Pack - $5.85 - Save $1.64
I’m not a fan of any of these Lego games, like Lego Star Wars or Lego Indiana Jones, etc. When I was young, I liked to build stuff with the real Lego blocks.
I have however always been a fan of the Half-Life series, and when you combine the two, you get Half-Life 2 Lego, which I read about recently, and decided to check it out.
The pics are pretty good, and feature dropships, Combine Overpatrol, Combine CP, Alyx, Gordon Freeman, Zombies, head crabs, striders, mini striders, and even the G-Man. There are also other interesting details in the background, like the Combine architecture, control panels, and other stuff.
Attention Valve: This is a cry for Half-Life 2: Episode 3 if there ever was one. Hurry up.
Some videos I found:
Publisher: ARUSH Entertainment
Platform: Microsoft Windows
Release date: May 21, 2002
Genres: Run and gun; side-scrolling platformer
On this day in gaming, in 2002, Duke Nukem Manhattan Project was released.
It was a spin-off of the main series and featured a side-scrolling platform style of play similar to the first two Duke Nukem games, Duke Nukem and Duke Nukem II, except it was chiefly in 3D. It was from this game that Duke Nukem Forever borrowed the idea of the EGO concept. If Duke killed enemies he received more EGO, and if he was damaged he lost EGO. DNF's golden pistol, a 45. Colt, was also an idea taken from this game, although DN: Manhattan Project featured a Desert
The Pig Cops, pipe bombs, and the Mighty Boot from Duke Nukem 3D made appearances too.
At the end, during the credits it states, “See Duke Next in Duke Nukem Forever”.
In fact, many have thought that this game was the game once known as Duke Nukem Forever, a side scroller first announced in 1996, but later cancelled, and the title, recycled for what we now know as Duke Nukem Forever, an unreleased FPS stuck in development hell. This rumour was denied though.
PC - Xbox 360
Requires Fallout 3 to play: PC - Xbox 360
You may also be interested in:
Fallout 3 Collector's Edition: PC - Xbox 360
Fallout 3: Amazon.com Exclusive Survival Edition: PC - Xbox 360
Fallout 3: Prima Official Game Guide
Fallout Trilogy - 3 Pack Compilation ( Fallout 1, 2, Tactics)
The Pitt :
The Pitt allows you to travel to the post-apocalyptic remains of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and become embroiled in a conflict between slaves and their Raider masters. Explore a sprawling settlement ravaged by time, neglect, nuclear radiation, and moral degradation. The Pitt is filled with morally grey choices, shady NPCs, new enemies, new weapons, and much more.
The Pitt opens with a desperate radio message, and a meeting with its sender, an escaped slave named Wernher. Wernher claims that the leader of "The Pitt" has created a cure for mutations... and he needs you to go in and retrieve it. From there, the player can proceed in a number of ways, in true Fallout 3 style. Do you fight your way in, or disguise yourself as a slave? Ally with the slaves, or join their Raider overlords? The Pitt is very morally ambiguous - there's no real right or wrong, just choices to be made, sides to be chosen, and a mystery that could send shock waves throughout the entire Wasteland.
Operation: Anchorage. Enter a military simulation and fight in one of the greatest battles of the Fallout universe - the liberation of Anchorage, Alaska from its Chinese Communist invaders. Gain access to unique armor, weapons, and exotic gadgets while you build and command interactive Strike Teams to win the battle and defeat the Chinese base.
The Brotherhood Outcasts are trying to acquire advanced military technology, and the only way to open the vault containing these relics is by completing a tactical simulation only you can enter. In Operation: Anchorage you will re-live the epic Battle of Anchorage from Fallout lore. Find your way into the simulation, stripped of resources, and survive within the rules set up by the simulation’s creators. The Chinese red army is everywhere, so secure the surrounding mountain side and fight your way into the Chinese base.
Now GamePro has put it at the top of their list, that's number 1 again, of "The 20 Greatest Games Never Made". Now to see if it'll get Wired's Vapourware Award again this year, for the fifth in a row, and the seventh time overall.
In addition to this, system requirements have been released for the game:
Minimum System Requirements (ignore this)
* Intel Pentium 4 2.0 Ghz / AMD XP 2200+
* 512 MB RAM
* 128 MB DirectX 8.0 compatible card / nVIDIA GeForce 5700 / ATI Radeon 9600
Recommended System Requirements
* Intel Core 2 Duo E7400 / AMD 64 X2 5600+
* 2 GB RAM
* 512 MB DirectX 9.0c compatible card / nVIDIA GeForce 9800 GTX / ATI Radeon HD 4850
Engine: id Tech 3
Platforms: Apple Macintosh, Microsoft Windows, Xbox
Release date: May 20, 2002
Genre: First-person shooter
On this day in gaming, in 2002, Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix was released. It was the second in a series of three games, and it was the last one to be developed by Raven Software.
It is an FPS which used the id Tech 3 (Quake III: Team Arena) engine, and starred the non-fictional character of John Mullins. The character’s likeness is that of John, although the voice used isn’t his. One of the focal points of the game is its excessive violence and the dismemberment of enemies.
My favourite missions were the ones in the jungles of Columbia. It felt almost like Vietnam!
Which would you rather have? Thi4f by Eidos Montreal, that has teased about the title for quite a while, and says that it’s only in pre-production currently, or The Dark Mod, which came into being after the last Thief, Deadly Shadows, was released in 2004. It’s been nearly five years and the team, a bunch of Thief fans working on it in their spare time with no funding, says they want to get a beta release out this year.
No points for guessing which one we’ll see first, then. It’s not a race, but rather preference over which you prefer: a big budget AAA title, using newer technology or a mod for Doom 3 which looks dated all ready. It’s not all about graphics, though, and besides, you’ll be sneaking around in the dark for most of the time, so you won’t even notice. It’ll just be black with different shades of grey, and the occasional light that needs to be extinguished. Doom 3, although it looked good, was never praised for its bright and cheerful appearance. Thief didn’t win awards for its pointy, harsh looking graphics back in the day either; it was the gameplay that people were after, and are still looking for.
The Dark Mod sounds as though it’s coming along nicely, when you take a long look at some of the features that the mod is promising, and if you’ve watched the videos, and seen the screenshots and artwork. There will be intelligent AI, realistic physics, great looking city environments, a great thief’s arsenal of tools and ingenious ways of using them.
Read this: You will be able to shoot moss arrows into windows, and they won’t break, but they’ll grow all over the window pane and make less sound when you smash it in order to break in- sounds excellent.
That’s what I want most of all, is more clever ways of using tools and weapons and not just the same old point and fire approach- sort of like the modern version of alternate fire that we all raved about for years when it first debuted in the 90s.
The Dark Mod, being made by Thief fans for Thief fans, aims to keep on adding and adding new features, and after the beta release which is all ready shaping up to be quite impressive, will keep updating and releasing new versions with new features for people to use. And since the team working on it is too busy to make more than a few maps, which look great to say the least, there’s also the DarkRadiant tool, which will enable people to make their own maps and campaigns, and take that task off the devs shoulders. It will most likely keep the Thief fan community busy for years until Thi4f even sees the light of day.
Recently there’s been another attempt at trying to get the source code for the Dark engine games, namely Thief, Thief Gold, and Thief II, so that the graphics can be updated just like every other well known and loved game of the nineties, like Doom or Quake. With The Dark Mod all ready looking much better than an updated Thief ever could, there’s really little need, unless you’re a purist who wants to stick with far outdated technology, or a masochist who likes a challenge.
I just hope that The Dark Mod doesn’t get shut down by Square Enix (Square Enix bought Eidos). Think about it- it happened to the fan-made Chrono Trigger sequel recently, and it has happened before to mods for games. Think of UDoom, probably a project which little of you know about which was issued a cease and desist order two years ago. It aimed to recreate Doom in the Unreal engine, and id Software promptly sought to shut it down, and the devs complied, knowing it would otherwise lead to a legal war that they had no chance of winning.
What if Eidos or Square Enix picked up The Dark Mod on its radar and decided that, because it’s a project using the Doom 3 engine and resembles or emulates Thief too closely, which practically fits the description of what UDoom was, it must be shut down. That would be bad.
Best we keep this project in the shadows then.
Sources and Resources:
07-28-2009 - East India Company
09-03-2009 - First Class Flurry $9.99
It’s been two weeks, and after all the rumours and “statements”, including the official goodbye on 3D Realms site, 3D Realms clears up the whole misconception about their “closure” and claims that Take-Two is full of alien b@stards. It turns out that the conspiracy theory, although wrong in suggesting that DNF was still in development, was right about 3DR not closing up shop at all.
3D Realms has in fact not closed, according to a press release recently, but the team working on Duke Nukem Forever was let go. 3DR claims it will continue to act as a company and license and co-create games based upon the Duke Nukem franchise.
3DR also states that it didn’t receive the $ 12 000 000 from Take-Two, but instead this was a deal between Take-Two and GT Interactive/Infogrames. It was only in July 2008 that Take-Two paid 3DR $ 2 500 000 in an agreement for another unannounced game.
GT Interactive (now Atari AFAIK) paid 3DR $ 400 000 in 1998, and this was the only publisher funding 3DR ever received, and a pittance compared to the $ 20 000 000 that 3DR put into the development of Duke Nukem Forever out of their own pocket.
The rumour about the $ 30 000 000 deal that was supposedly offered by Take-Two for the Duke Nukem IP is actually partially true, even though Scott Miller of 3DR allegedly denied it in a comment on Shacknews, which might not have been Scott Mi11er at all. Take-Two offered to acquire the DNF team and the Duke Nukem IP for an undisclosed amount. 3DR refused the deal and a few days later the DNF team was let go.
Last week, Take-Two filed a lawsuit against 3DR, but seeing as Take-Two didn’t ever actually give 3DR any money, the case is “without merit”, and is thought of as a school yard tactic in order to obtain ownership of the Duke Nukem IP.
Even though Take-Two has the publishing rights for Duke Nukem Forever, 3DR still has some rights to release the game directly to the public, which is interesting.
Now to see what actually happens to Duke Nukem Forever. Will it sit on the shelf, gathering dust? Will it remain on hold with 3DR, continuing to work on it at some point in the future? Will it be sold off to someone else or given to another developer to finish? Will it be released for free to the public (like hell)? Will it be cancelled forever and everything related to the game burnt and thrown away?
Things seem to be looking up a bit at the moment in any case- 3D Realms is still around.
May 19, 2009 Terminator Salvation
May 20, 2009 Delta Force: Xtreme 2
May 22, 2009 Damnation
Now people who have far too much time on their hands are asking for some funny Jon St. John outtakes from the recording session. Apogee’s reply is, “I've seen a lot of posts asking for the outtakes of the Jon St. John recording session. The session went really well. So there are none.”
If you want outtakes from other another Duke Nukem game, you can find them here. These ones were for the Playstation version of Duke Nukem 3D. Jon does an excellent impression of Mr. Burns and Smithers from The Simpsons.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Arcade $2.96
Golden Axe $2.96
Dig Dug $2.96
Grand Theft Auto IV $27.97
Call of Duty: World at War $41.97
Guitar Hero Metallica $41.97
Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare GOTY $34.97
007: Quantum of Solace $19.97
Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution $27.97
NBA 2K9 $27.97
NHL 2K9 $19.97
Major League Baseball 2K9 $33.97
MLB Front Office Manager $19.97
PlayStation 3 Logitech Driving Force GT Racing Wheel $105.97
Prince of Persia $39.99
The screen here shows an in-game model of a real life building.
Here's more techno-babble from the guys there:
"Progress continues towards getting TDM ready for a 2009 beta release. Fidcal has been working to set up movable/droppable objects so that the noise alerts AI; while you can quietly set things down, if you drop a vase on a stone floor AI will certainly notice.
Angua has implemented blood decals that alert AI and can be washed away with water arrows. Ishtvan continues to fine tune combat and has also added the ability to "moss" glass with moss arrows so that it can be broken quietly.
We also had an internal map contest, to see what mappers could produce in about a month. The result has been four or five very cool little missions, including a very Thiefy sequel to 'Thief's Den' by Fidcal. These missions (plus a few others, hopefully) will provide players with lots of stealth fun when the mod is released. Flanders has also been working on a beautiful training map, where players can learn all the new features TDM offers.
There are a few new screenshots of various maps for you to see on the screenshots page. As well, we have a new video. It is an example from a map in progress, by Mortem Desino, that demonstrates a few TDM features in action, including a (strange) example of custom conversations."http://www.thedarkmod.com/
You remember that old tune? I remember it from when Rise of the Triad fired up. The good old days...
This wasn’t the smartest strategy in the world- not by a long shot. Not only did they throw work away, but money too.
I think they should have gotten the first iteration out which used the Quake II engine by 2000 or 2001. That could have been Duke Nukem 4. Then the Unreal engine based game could have been released by 2003 or 2004. That would have been Duke Nukem 5. Then that would have left them with plenty of funding and at least five years to work on Duke Nukem 6, and possibly time for Duke Nukem 7.
That would have given them three years each more or less to work on those games. Instead of throwing away work and money, and hopping from project to project and scrapping and starting over all the time, they could have just kept ideas aside for the next game.
Basically, 3D Realms’ way of thinking was practically like this, “Oh, I like this engine- it’s better than the one we’re using now. Let’s switch to that one. I like this concept or idea, let’s put that one in and get rid of all the other rubbish. I’m not happy with this project, let’s start over again. We don’t have deadlines, because we’re self-funded and don’t have to rely on publishers, so we can take as long as we want. We want to give the fans what they want. This is going to be the most perfect game ever.”
Wrong. Those are all horrible things to do. I can tell you that I know that writing and game developing are hugely different, but some of the same principles apply as regards motivation, goals, and moving forward and not backwards. Writing even makes a part of a game.
If I don’t like a sentence or paragraph in my article, I don’t always just delete it- I keep it in a file full of “gems”. They are like uncut diamonds- I don’t really think they fit well in the current article, but I may just use them in a later article in which they’ll be perfect. It doesn’t always pay to just get rid of stuff and not use it- like in 3DR’s case.
He is mostly known for founding Nine Inch Nails. Most of the music he's done in the studio is done alone except for drums. When he does live shows, he hires musicians.
He's also been apart of other bands in the past, and on top of that, has worked with id Software on games like Quake and Doom 3, although the sound work he did wasn't included in the final release. It is available in Enhanced Doom 3, a mod for the game.
For more, check here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trent_Reznor
What does AAA stand for?
It's not an abbreviation of anything. It just means the best of the best...
"Well, now you know the truth: Apocalypso's Atomic Arcade!"