World destruction comes in small shrink-wrapped packages...

2010/03/27

AAA: My Birthday

It was my birthday this week, and I’m going to tell you all about what I got.

A got a new printer. Last month I went to Incredible Connection and traded in my old Lexmark for a new Hewlett Packard one. This one’s better than because it’s black, it’s light, and it actually works. That Lexmark gave me problems from day one. Good riddance. The trade-in occurred last month, and I got one third of the price off. I had to have it wrapped up and given to me on the day, and I actually forgot I was getting it.

The only thing that sucked is that there’s a USB cable that should have been bundled in the box. When I phoned the store however, they said it had to be bought separately. They wanted R70 for a cable. I went down to Chaos Computers and bought one for R30.

I got a new watch. Seriously, I’ve been without a watch for years now. And the watches I do have are merely just for show, and don’t work. This one has a proper leather strap, and not the cheap plastic ones that split and break after a few months.

I got a new jacket. I get new clothes as presents every year, and this birthday was no different. I got a jacket that makes me look and feel like a pimp. It’s black, but with blue and pink on it, and has a hood.

I got some new games. For my birthday I got S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Call of Pripyat, Aliens vs. Predator, and Battlefield: Bad Company 2. I immediately put CoP in an installed it. So I’ve been playing that for a few days all ready. AvP will likely be my next game to play, as it looks properly scary, despite some negative reviews. I bet the critics were too scared to even play it, anyway.

I also wanted Assassin’s Creed II and Metro 2033, but not only was it getting a bit expensive, but the DRM in AC II put me off.

I got a free pizza. Ha! This one was the one to top it all off. I ordered a pizza, and waited in the kitchen. Then I waited on the porch. Then I waited in the driveway. Eventually I was waiting in the bloody road for the pizza delivery guy, who got lost apparently. He rocked up, and I gave him the tip, but I said he was late, and that I wasn’t paying for the pizza seeing as he left me there to wait for nearly an hour, and my pizza was warm – not hot. Not cool.

It was well within my rights, because it says right on the box “if it’s late it’s free”.

No pizza tastes as sweet as a free pizza.

Something else I wanted for my birthday was an upgrade for my PC. I just put in a new graphics card, but I sometime want an even better one, and that means I’ll likely have to upgrade everything else just to accommodate it.

We ended off the night with friends and family, and watched a movie, District 9. Crappy dialogue, too much swearing, but awesome CGI and weapon effects. Especially the alien weaponry. Those things just completely vaporise people into a red mist.

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Video Game Deals at Amazon - The Beatles: Rock Band, Tom Clancy's EndWar, Prison Break: The Conspiracy [VGDs]

PB This edition of VGDs sees some mega, massive deals. Right at the top would be The Beatles: Rock Band for Xbox 360 with the guitar controller, where you can save $40. Tom Clancy’s Endwar for the PS3 comes with a headset bundle and you save $36 on the price.

Prison Break: The Conspiracy has been reduced by a big 50% for the PC version, so instead of $60, you pay $30, which is what it should cost in the first place. The Xbox 360 version has gotten a slight price cut as well, but only $10.

Other big deals for big names include The Saboteur for PS3, Avatar for the DS, as well as others. Have a look at the best deals below, and then after that, check out the whole list below that.

Best Deals:

The Beatles: Rock Band X360 Wireless Rickenbacker 325 Guitar Controller - $59.99 - Save $40.00 [Xbox 360]
Tom Clancy's EndWar Headset Bundle - $48.99 - Save $36.00 [PS3]
Prison Break: The Conspiracy - $29.99 - Save $30.00 [PC]
Valkyria Chronicles - $19.99 - Save $18.00 [PS3]
NARUTO Shippuden: Legends: Akatsuki Rising - $22.98 - Save $14.01 [PSP]
Fallen Earth - $29.99 - Save $13.74 [PC]
The Beatles: Rock Band Limited Edition Premium Bundle - $124.99 - Save $12.55 [Xbox 360]
The Saboteur - $37.99 - Save $12.00 [PS3]
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City - $8.87 - Save $11.00 [PC]
Malice - $8.86 - Save $10.37 [PS2]
Prison Break: The Conspiracy - $39.99 - Save $10.00 [Xbox 360]
Avatar - $19.99 - Save $10.00 [DS]

PC

Prison Break: The Conspiracy - $29.99 - Save $30.00

Keepsake - $2.12 - Save $7.03
Hidden Relics - $7.59 - Save $8.00
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas V2.0 - $12.98 - Save $7.01
Fallen Earth - $29.99 - Save $13.74
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City - $8.87 - Save $11.00

PS2

Malice - $8.86 - Save $10.37
Da Vinci Code - $10.04 - Save $9.45

PS3

Valkyria Chronicles - $19.99 - Save $18.00
Tom Clancy's EndWar Headset Bundle - $48.99 - Save $36.00
The Saboteur - $37.99 - Save $12.00

Xbox 360

Avatar - $19.99 - Save $7.00
The Beatles: Rock Band X360 Wireless Rickenbacker 325 Guitar Controller - $59.99 - Save $40.00
The Beatles: Rock Band Limited Edition Premium Bundle - $124.99 - Save $12.55
Prison Break: The Conspiracy - $39.99 - Save $10.00

PSP

NARUTO Shippuden: Legends: Akatsuki Rising - $22.98 - Save $14.01

Nintendo Wii

Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo's Dungeon - $19.99 - Save $10.00
Avatar - $19.99 - Save $10.00
Trauma Team - $39.99 - Save $10.00

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Sources: Amazon - Nowinstock


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Visceral And Thievious: More Thief Inspired mods [Mod Watch]

I happened to have an occasional glance over at ttlg again, and there was a thread bashing some new Thief mod, started late last year, called Visceral.

“Visceral is a stealth-action game in a medieval/fantasy setting with steam punk elements. It takes place primarily in the city of Cressport, a dismal place rife with secrets and those who would seek control at any cost.”

It’s a mod utilizing the Unreal 3 Engine, in which you play Slater, “a hired mercenary specializing in stealth assassination.”

Taking from the website’s pages up so far, I can tell you:

VisScr1aThe game supports first and third person views, and allows you to switch between the two. It has the stealth elements from Thief, but has some RPG elements in it, with side-quests [more like Thief: Deadly Shadows, which inspired the team behind it]. The player can trade and sell artefacts and loot. The game takes place in a “Rich medieval & fantasy atmosphere blended with steampunk elements, uninterrupted, vast mission areas.”

Factions in the game borrow from Thief too, with the City Watch mentioned, thieves, Pagans, and the Beggar’s Guild, which is more from The Elder Scrolls: Oblivion, where the beggars worked closely with the thieves, as “the eyes and ears of the city”. The Penumbrals faction sounds a lot like the Keepers, and the Esoterians sound like the Hammerites.

There’s also ruins of an ancient lost city, called Gordion, likely inspired by Karath-Din from Thief or perhaps the Kurshock city from Deadly Shadows.

In addition to comparing it to the Thief games, it does look quite like The Dark Mod as well.

thief_themed_coop_techdemo And that’s not all. I was over at Planet Doom the other day where they talked about another mod in the making, using the Doom 3 or id Tech 4 engine, called Thievious. Development on it has just started this week, but it’s set to be a co-operative Thief-inspired mod, where you can play with a friend.

The author, Oneofthe8devilz, was keen to see if he could make a multiplayer based mod much like was done with the Thief II Multiplayer mod.

This mod is also inspired by Thief: Deadly Shadows. And on the Doom3World forums there’s a discussion going on about it, where surprise, some Dark Mod fellas rocked up and started talking about the mod, and offered to lend some support, like letting him use their source code, seeing as both use the Doom 3 engine. Some said that The Dark Mod could even use his help on their team, and so it went.

Speaking of The Dark Mod, a new Fan mission was released for it just the other day, called the Builder’s Influence.

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Sources:

http://www.visceralgame.com/ [Visceral]

http://www.moddb.com/mods/thievious [Thievious]


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2010/03/26

Half-Life 2 Actor, Robert Culp, Dies at Age 79 [News]

Robert Culp The actor who played the egomaniacal villain, Dr. Wallace Breen in Half-Life 2, Robert Culp, has passed away.

He apparently died after taking a fall just this week in his home in Los Angeles, reportedly on the 24th – my birthday of all days. He was 79 years of age. Culp was taken to hospital, but later pronounced dead.

One of Culp’s most memorable appearances to many people was in the 60’s show, I Spy. And I saw this mentioned on Twitter accounts like that of Tom Hall’s, but I didn’t even know what I Spy was, or who Robert Culp was, admittedly. That was way before my time.

But no doubt gamers all know Dr. Breen, the main antagonist in HL2 who was the administrator of City 17, much like he filled the same title at Black Mesa Laboratory, although you didn’t see him much in the first game, if at all. You heard about him though early on in Half-Life.

breen He played a major role in Half-Life 2, though, taking the blame for ending the 7 hour war, selling out humanity, which led to their imprisonment on their own planet. The last we ever saw of Breen was in Half-Life 2: Episode 2, where one of those big, ugly Advisor things killed Eli Vance, but spared Gordon Freeman and Alyx.

It didn’t look like him, but you’ll remember that near the end of Half-Life 2, when Breen was fleeing, he was offered a host body by the Combine. This host body also made an appearance in Episode 1. It’s my feeling that this is Breen, albeit transformed.

Robert leaves behind his wife, five children and five grandchildren.

You see Valve? This is what you get when you don’t hurry up with Episode 3! How many more people have to suffer? How many more people have to die? *Sob*
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Source: Half Life’s Dr. Breen Dead at 79 [LazyGamer]
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F.E.A.R. 3 now Known as F.3.A.R., Reveal Coming Soon [News]

fear3

Rumours have been going around for a year or more about a possible sequel to F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin, which will no doubt be F.E.A.R. 3.

In some Spanish magazine lately, there was a page that appeared to advertise a reveal of one “F.3.A.R.” in its next issue. NeoGAF forum members eyed it, and the rest is history.

But have a look at the image above. The guy on the right is Paxton, with a bullet in his head from the first game, when Point Man shot him. He looks like Randy Orton. Alma is in the middle with the baby conceived after screwing Michael Becket in the second game. And the guy on the left is probably Point Man – without the balaclava, I’m guessing. You can tell they’re all related. Great artwork though, by the way.

They say Pointy’s on the baddie’s side this time. So, I don’t know who the protagonist[s] will be. Probably other F.E.A.R. operatives or something.

That’s the second game so far in recent memory that’s incorporated numbers into a game’s name, making it border on l33t speak. The other is Thi4f, or Thief 4. And you don’t have to be a super replica soldier to figure out that people aren’t liking it one bit.

Of course, there are others, like Driv3r, Wip3out, and Left 4 Dead.

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Sources:

F3AR revealed.Yes, it's named F3AR, so original. [NeoGAF]

F.3.A.R.: They're Really Calling It That? [Kotaku]


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The Verge Gets new Time Slot, New Gaming Shows on Vuzu [TV News]

 

vuzu.logo There was apparently a forum thread over at the Vuzu forums last week, with another one more recently that suggested that The Verge, a local TV show about gaming on Vuzu, Channel 123, will be moving to a new time slot.

The live edition of The Verge on Thursday, had Mo Nagdee as the host, and he confirmed that The Verge will indeed be moving to a new time slot as of next month. April 1st [yes, I know] will see The Verge moving to 10:30 PM, instead of 9:30 PM.

In addition to this, The Verge will not be showing four times a week anymore. It will be Mondays and Wednesdays, with PlayR showing  on Thursdays. Mo says that Tuesdays and Fridays will have something else in it’s place, but related to the shows in some form. But it’s a surprise…

Some people on the Vuzu forums are confused about what times and days the shows will be on, but that’s easy to fix, seeing as you can check the Vuzu schedule. In fact, the names and details of the new shows are right there to see. That’s right. There are two new shows. They’re called The Ginx Files and GameFace.

Thursday 01 April

22:30 - PlayR

It is said that there are over 500 million video gamers in the world and PlayR has the latest games. Also exclusive news and previews to keep viewers up to date with the fastest moving entertainment medium on the planet.

Friday 02 April

22:30 - The Ginx Files [New Show]

A rich compendium of back to back videogame reviews, features, facts and comparisons, covering both new and classic games.

Monday 05 April

22:30 - The Verge

The Verge is your interactive dose of gaming and technology TV, featuring new releases and in-depth coverage of every platform from consoles to PCs and mobiles. Presented daily by Pippa Tshabalala and Muhammed Nagdee.

Tuesday 06 April

22:30 - GameFace [New Show]

It is time to look at what's hot and what's not in the world of video games. Julia Hardy reviews and compares some of the latest releases as chosen by you. Also featuring news on the state of gaming around the globe.

Wednesday 07 April

22:30 - The Verge

So there you are. There are four shows all in all. The Verge is on Mondays and Wednesdays. PlayR is on Thursdays. The Ginx Files is on Fridays, and GameFace is on Tuesdays. No new shows for the weekend, but there are usually always repeats of the above shows on those days as well as during the week at various times.

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Sources: Vuzu – The Verge


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2010/03/25

NAG Online Moving to a new Domain Soon [News]

NAG Read this after taking my little break the other day. NAG Magazine’s online presence, NAG Online, is going to be moving to another domain sometime in the near future.

“You may have noticed that we’ve had a severe lack of content these last few days. The reason behind this is the upcoming move: NAG Online will (hopefully soon) be moving to the address “www.nag.co.za”. Unfortunately, there have been a lot of unforeseen hiccups causing all sorts of delays, and ultimately our content is suffering because of it. Rest assured: we will have everything sorted out and back to normal as soon as possible. We apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused; we’ll keep you all posted with the status as soon as we know for certain what’s happening. This should have all happened last week, but hopefully we’ll have it all sorted out by the end of this week.

As soon as we’re up and running, the regular content will make a return and we’re going to run a killer competition with a truly awesome prize (a few, actually).”

So, I think it’s about time that they got their own domain at www.nag.co.za, instead of http://nag.tidemedia.co.za/ (the current one). Surely the magazine is old enough and well-known enough to have this.

Oh, and the hint Geoff was talking about is StarCraft II. NAG’s gone mad over that game a lot lately.

By the way, the forums went down recently, seeing as there’s a bit of confusion over when the move will take place, and everything has to be shifted. There was an explanation left here on the forums:

“Yeah, things went wrong; they tend to do that sometimes.

The important thing is that we're working on a solution and will hopefully be making the move soon. Until then, I've switched the forums back on so you guys can continue doing your thing. Don't worry, you won't lose any new posts; I'll back up the database again before we actually make the switch. If this is irritating you, imagine how pissed off we are.

Anyway, our apologies for the inconvenience. The forums will go down again before we make the move, but that will hopefully be for a much shorter period of time.”

Source: NAG Online


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NAG April 2010 Issue Out Now [News]

It’s the last Thursday of the month – that means it’s time for the new NAG to arrive. And so it has. I got my copy today. It’s the April 2010, 12th Birthday Special Edition. And this one is better than everyone of the others this year so far.

As you can see, the issue has gone StarCraft II mad- they claim that it’s not just coincidence that NAG and the last StarCraft came out in the same year.


There are reviews of some big games: BioShock 2 which naturally got a high score, Aliens vs. Predator, which NAG was quite lenient on, considering some of the negative reviews the game has gotten lately. And there’s Heavy Rain, Star Trek Online, Dante’s Inferno, Borderlands: The Secret Armory of General Knoxx, and a couple of mini-reviews on RE 5: Gold Edition, and The Sims 3: Ambitions. But the game that got the Editor’s Choice would be God of War III.

As for previews, there’s one on Metro 2033, the post-apocalyptic shooter which just released this month. NAG also has a look at Kane& Lynch 2: Dog Days.
There are still plenty of videos on the Cover DVD, as is the fashion with NAG. But the good news is that there is actually some other stuff worthwhile on this DVD this month. You’ll be pleased to know that the freeware versions of Command& Conquer: Tiberian Sun and Firestorm, released by EA for free last month, have made it onto the disc. And the size of both is nearly about the same as The Dark Mod, which has been in the “queue” for nearly the last six months.

No, I’m not going to drop this, NAG. Not on your life.

And there’s some free e-books: “Dracula” by Bram Stoker, and “War of the Worlds” by H.G. Wells. Both excellent reads. And there’s an update for the ever useful NAG CD/DVD database, which lets you search for an item on your PC, without having to comb through tons of Cover Discs. Nice.
There’s also a StarCraft II fansite kit. Told you they went mad with SC II. Free games include Narbacular Drop [basically the prequel to Valve’s Portal, if I’m not mistaken], and a flash game based on Portal.
There’s the usual patches and drivers, but the demos section feels a little flat to me this month, but it’s more than made up for by the “Extras” section. Well done.

And not to mention, there’s those videos…
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Source: NAG Online
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Thrifty Thursday: Magic Gauntlet Karath-Din [Freeware]

masterthiefg Okay, so version 1, and pretty much the only release of this little game so far, came out last year.

I noticed a post on the ttlg forums back then, right on Christmas Eve, that talked about a card game based on the Thief games, called Magic Gauntlet Karath-Din, or just Magic Gauntlet. I only managed to get around to downloading it just the other day though.

My hopes weren’t that high to be honest, but after a few days, I’ve become hooked on the bloody thing!

No doubt the game is heavily inspired by both Magic: The Gathering as well as the Thief games, Thief: The Dark Project, Thief: The Metal Age, and Thief: Deadly Shadows. Art from said games appears on the cards as well as the background of the playing area.

background

As far a MTG influences go, the game even “borrows” sounds from an old game from the 90’s developed by Microprose, which falls under the MTG universe.

It reportedly took 2 and a half years to make this seemingly simple but enjoyable little flash game, and several people from the ttlg forums contributed to the project, with some doing the art, either ripped from the games or concept art done by Looking Glass Studios, Eidos and Ion Storm, or creating new pieces, as well as coming up with ideas for the actual cards that you play with.

         Cave Spider Trickster's Portal Skeletal Hammerite Haunt

It’s been months since the V 1.0, and all has been quite quiet on further development on the game, but I would like to see some new stuff eventually, like some new cards and so on. Maybe they’ll be a resurgence in production when Thi4f or Thief 4 comes out, and there will be more content to be inspired by. Or else, just like was said a lot on the forums, you go digging in the thief lore scattered all over the internet on various websites for ideas. I’ve read through a number of these lore articles myself in the past, actually.

And the best part is it’s free! Non-commercial, and probably for the best, seeing as it “borrows” quite a lot from aforementioned sources. It even comes with a manual.

2813281328132813

AAA says:  4/5

Download: [1] [2]

Forums Threads: [1] [2]


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2010/03/24

Mortal Kombat Tribute in Dexter Series [Random Madness]

mortalkombat26 It’s common knowledge to most of us, apart from Ed Boon, Mortal Kombat co-creator, who only recently found out and tweeted about it last month, that in Dexter, Dexter’s father is none other than James Remar, the man who played Raiden in Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, the second MK film [also known as the cr@p MK movie].

So most of us know about that, but I couldn’t help but smile when, in series 4 of Dexter, which we’re currently watching here in SA, Dexter was complaining about lack of sleep as usual, you could hear his baby crying in the background.

If you paid attention, and if you’ve played the Mortal Kombat games before, you would have figured out that the sound was the same as the sound of the baby crying when a fighter executed the babality finisher on an opponent, which I believe debuted in MK II.

Raiden wins.

 rayden_electro_shot_mk2


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Splinter Cell: Conviction – PC Version Delay, No Demo [News]

SCC

                                   “Take this, you PC gaming scum!”

The PC version of yet another game gets sh1t upon, it seems.

Yes, the oft-delayed Splinter Cell: Conviction is going to be delayed once again – on PC. Instead of the “set in stone” release date of April 13, the game has been pushed back two weeks, and will now come out on the 27th of April, 2010. Apparently the listing on Amazon has confirmed this, and Big Download received confirmation from Ubisoft on the matter.

The Xbox 360 version of the game is still on track for April 13.

To add insult to injury, the PC version of the game won’t receive a demo either. The Xbox 360 version will.

Ubisoft community developer Li Kuo on Twitter:

"Sorry guys, tomorrow's demo is for X360 only. There are no plans for a PC demo."

And not to mention: this is a Ubisoft title. What does that mean, you ask? Ubisoft’s new rubbish DRM, requiring an always on connection, optimised for first world countries, and nobody else. That’s what.

Why, Atom*?

* God of Violent Video Games

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Sources:

- Splinter Cell Conviction PC's release gets a two week delay to April 27 [Big Download]
- No PC demo plans for Splinter Cell Conviction [Big Download]


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2010/03/23

Video Game Deals on Direct2Drive: Mass Effect 2, Star Trek Online [VGDs]

Game Deals:

Universe at War: Earth Assault - 75% off, at $4.95.

Iron Man the game is 50% off, at $4.95.

Mass Effect 2 is $20 OFF for standard or deluxe versions.

Europa Universalis: Rome Gold is 75% off, at $4.95.

Star Trek Online is $20 OFF + new free bonus item, the Radiometric Converter.

Tropico 3 is now $29.95.

Pre-Order deals:

Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell Conviction is available for pre-order now at D2D - get Splinter Cell FREE with pre-order!

Pre-order Mount & Blade: Warband from D2D and get Beta access NOW! 

New Releases:

BioShock 2 DLC: Sinclair Solutions Tester Pack

Dragon Age: Origins Awakening

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Source: Direct2Drive


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Six Days in Fallujah… Breach [News]

Six-Days-in-Fallujah askerler

                             “The wall’s been breached!” Lame.

That’s what I saw when I first read the headlines on the internet. Now you know how it feels. I thought that the troubled game known as Six Days in Fallujah had been leaked onto the internet and it was being downloaded en masse via torrent portals.

No, it turns out that it’s not that sort of breach. It’s their new title, called Breach. It appears to be a multiplayer shooter for multiple platforms. All that’s known about the game is that it involves the CIA – something which I think more games need to tap in to [and risk getting abducted and/or assassinated]. The Special Activities Division, or S.A.D. is a part of the CIA that’s been mentioned.

Section of the Press Release:

"Atomic Games, a pioneer in covert action simulations and military action games, today announced the development of Breach™, a multiplayer title for consoles and personal computers.

The game features so you've managed to decode this section to reveal the classified information. Come on! Did you really think it was going to be that easy? Yes, we do work for military and intelligence organizations. Yes, we are creating a game that will blow your mind. Yes, some of it was actually redacted. Yes, many of us have security clearances. So what that all means is I can't tell you anything more than is in this release until it's okay. Until then, we are high-speed, low-drag and ready to work. Molon Labe!

More information will be released as it becomes declassified by Atomic.”

Right.

Their other title, Six Days in Fallujah, is reportedly completed, but Atomic Games has yet to secure a publisher to actually get the game out there.

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Sources:

ATOMIC GAMES ANNOUNCES NEW FIRST-PERSON SHOOTER [Gamasutra]

Breach announced by Six Days in Fallujah dev, Atomic Games [Joystiq]


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2010/03/22

Video Game Deals on Amazon: Tekken 6, Rise of the Argonauts,

Tekken6cover.jpg Today there are some great deals, so hurry and grab them while you can. I’ve seen Rise of the Argonauts for Xbox 360 for more than 50% off, and Tekken 6 also has a deal going on for the PS3 version today, where you can save about $25. Other notable games are Supreme Commander and Dante’s Inferno, which both have several dollars shaved off their prices.

Best deals:

Rise of the Argonauts - $23.51 – Save $26.48 [Xbox 360]
Tekken 6 - $34.98 – Save $25.01 [PS3]
Build-a-Bear Workshop: Friendship Valley - $29.99 - Save $20.00 [Wii]
Flyboys Squadron - $9.97 - Save $16.83 [PC]
Fetch! - $8.36 - Save $11.63 [PC]
Destiny of Zorro - $18.82 - Save $11.00 [DS]
Supreme Commander 2 - $49.99 - Save $10.00 [Xbox 360]

PC

Flyboys Squadron - $9.97 - Save $16.83
Fetch! - $8.36 - Save $11.63
Dancing with the Stars - $9.06 - Save $7.66
Score International: BAJA 1000 - $8.05 - Save $7.44

PS3

Tekken 6 - $34.98 – Save $25.01
Dante's Inferno - $38.99 - Save $7.00
Tony Hawk: Ride Skateboard Bundle - $79.99 - Save $8.01
Pro-Evolution Soccer 2010 - $36.99 - Save $8.00
NHL 2K9 - $9.96 - Save $7.03

Xbox 360

Dante's Inferno - $38.99 - Save $7.00
Rise of the Argonauts - $23.51 – Save $26.48
Supreme Commander 2 - $49.99 - Save $10.00

PSP

Daxter - $6.99 - Save $7.50

Nintendo DS

Nintendogs Dachshund & Friends - $17.99 - Save $9.00
Destiny of Zorro - $18.82 - Save $11.00

Nintendo Wii

Build-a-Bear Workshop: Friendship Valley - $29.99 - Save $20.00

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Source: Amazon - Nowinstock


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Jamie Foxx to Star in Kane& Lynch Movie… as Lynch?

We all know that Bruce Willis is set to star as Adam “Kane’ Marcus in Kane& Lynch: The Movie, which is said to start filming in August, about the same time that the sequel to the original game, Kane& Lynch 2: Dog Days, will be released.

Now it’s been revealed that another star has been cast for the film. And it’s not who you thought it would be. Not by a mile. There were always three choices for the role of Lynch, if he was to be played in a movie: John Malkovich, Billy Bob Thornton, and Peter Stormare. All of those would have been excellent choices, I’m sure.

But who did they go with? Jamie Foxx.

I’m not being racist [I’m a misanthropist – I hate everyone], but I’m sure you’ve noticed that there’s one major thing that’s different between Lynch and Foxx. Come on, just have a look.

Jamie Foxx kane-lynch-2-teaser-trailer

Jamie Foxx                    Lynch on the left

All I can say is that they will have to do a reverse makeover on pretty-boy Foxx before he can look the part.They’ll have to shave most of his hair off, and straighten what’s left of it out, make him wear glasses, and lighten his complexion… at least. Maybe that’ll scare him off and the role can go to someone else. Few people will make that sort of sacrifice for a role.

Oh, and like some have mentioned: an ethnic man having the name “Lynch” is sure to have some people up in arms. If you don’t know why, then take a history lesson or search around with google.

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Source: [1] Variety.com - [2] Big Download
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Apocalypse Then: Risk II

riskIIAAA 10 Years of Risk II

I was always a big fan of Risk – the boardgame, that is. Whenever there was an opportunity, I would get it out the cupboard, and play it with my brothers and friends.

And sometimes, admittedly I would even play it solitaire – against myself, that is, sometimes with more than two players, to make it interesting.

That’s where this game comes in. Despite the title, the game doesn’t have a prequel – software wise. This game is the video game sequel to the old boardgame. It was developed by MicroProse, designed by Deep Red, and published by Hasbro Interactive; released on PC and Mac, and happened to be released on this day the 22nd of March, 2000; ten years ago.

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It’s a turn-based strategy title, no doubt similar to the original boardgame, but with a few additions – and subtractions, too. The subtraction being that there’s no board involved. This game has some new game modes, allows you to play against AI opponents, and even online against human foes.

This is surprisingly not the first Risk video game, but it is likely one of the best out there, still played today.

You can pick up Risk II here if you want to play a classic.


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2010/03/21

Apocalypse Then – Thief II: The Metal Age

ThiefII Ten Years of Thief II

On this day in gaming, back in 2000, Thief II: The Metal Age was released.

The game once again centres around Garrett the Master Thief – the greatest thief the world has never seen.

In this game, Garrett was up against a new threat in the Mechanists – a splinter group of the Hammerites, and their maniacal leader Karras, who planned a terrible fate for The City and its inhabitants. Along the way, Garrett meets old allies and enemies from his previous adventures. Surprisingly, although some hold grudges, they end up working together, somewhat reluctantly, to take down this new, greater, enemy.

The game was developed by the now defunct Looking Glass Studios, the guys behind the original Thief and System Shock games. It was published by Eidos Interactive, and was only ever released on PC.

The game looked similar to the first one as far as looks go. It used the same Dark engine, with a few graphical improvements but there were some new additions, like weapons, tools, and power ups, as well as new enemy types, with hardly any from Thief: The Dark Project making an appearance.

Players engaged in more thief-like behaviour, like robbing people and more stealth and sneaking around, rather than TDP’s tomb raiding and darker missions. The levels were bigger and better designed than the original, and less linear, with great levels like “Life of the Party” illustrating this.

This was LGS’s swan song, seeing as although they planned a Thief II: Gold, just like the original received, with extra missions and such, the company closed down.

The game did receive a sequel in Thief: Deadly Shadows, otherwise known as Thief III, which was developed by Ion Storm, makers of Deus Ex and Deus Ex: Invisible War. This Thief, although not bad, was considered the low point of the series so far. Another Thief game, referred to as Thi4f or Thief 4, is currently in development at Eidos Montreal, who are also working on Deus Ex: Human Revolution, once known as Deus Ex 3.

Funny how these games, Deus Ex, Thief, and System Shock always seem to be linked to each other in some way or another. Deus Ex took the stealth elements from the Thief series, and the RPG ones from the System Shock series.

However, the fan base for the Thief games is still thriving to this day, with Thief II in particular receiving many FMs or fan missions, as well as unofficial expansions like T2X: Shadows of the Metal Age. Other notable mods, like The Dark Mod, seek to recreate the Thief experience, but in newer engines like the Doom 3 or id Tech 4 engine in TDM’s case. Various incarnations of the Unreal engine have been used for other Thief-inspired mods like Thievery and Nightblade.

Thief II: The Metal Age remains my favourite in the series so far, with excellent story-telling, and gameplay. And not to mention I’ve always had a soft spot for castles and medieval architecture, which this game has plenty of. Not to mention, Garrett is one of the best protagonists, or anti-heroes, of any game.

You can pick up Thief II: The Metal Age here if you want to play a classic.


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Video Games Coming out This Week [03-21 – 03-27, 2010]: Just Cause 2

Human Rights Day

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             MEfw

AAA’s Targets of the Week: Just Cause 2, Mass Effect: Firewalker, The Settlers 7: Paths to a Kingdom 

This week sees the release of Just Cause 2 for PC, Xbox 360, and PS3. The original game was considered by some to be nothing more than a GTA clone, but it’s gone on to become perhaps even more mad and crazy, with unbelievable stunts similar to what you’d see in Hollywood being shown in the trailers for this game.

Bad news for PC gamers though, seeing as the game doesn’t support Windows XP; Vista and Windows 7 only. The reason for this was given as the fact that the game was designed to support DirectX 10 fully, and so XP with DX 9 is completely out.

Other games that are out this week include the free DLC pack for Mass Effect 2, called Firewalker, which adds some new missions, and a new vehicle to replace the somewhat disliked, and perhaps a bit unrealistic Mako from Mass Effect: the M57 Hammerhead. Just to make it clear: it’s free to Cerberus Network users. Everyone else has to pay a membership fee to get it.

There’s The Settlers 7: Paths to a Kingdom too – but beware, because this is another Ubisoft published title and incorporates their highly controversial new DRM, just like Assassin’s Creed II for the PC did.

A big Wii title that everybody’s been going on about for some time is Red Steel 2. That comes out this week too. It’s basically like an East meets West sort of game, with guns and swords and stuff.

Links as usual go to Amazon for retail versions, but also Direct2Drive, Steam, etc, for digital distribution versions. You can also check my Amazon aStore to see what the latest and greatest games are.

PC

Alcatraz
History Egypt - Engineering an Empire
Just Cause 2 [Steam – Digital]
Love [Digital]
Majesty 2: Kingmaker Expansion [Digital]
Mass Effect: Firewalker DLC [Cerberus Network] 
Plain Sight
The Settlers 7: Paths to a Kingdom 
Zhu Zhu Pets

Xbox 360

Game Room [Xbox Live Arcade]
How to Train Your Dragon
Just Cause 2
Mass Effect: Firewalker DLC [Cerberus Network] 
MotoGP 09/10

PS3

How to Train Your Dragon
Just Cause 2
Mass Effect: Firewalker DLC [Cerberus Network] 
MotoGP 09/10
Wakeboarding HD [PSN]

PSP

History Egypt - Engineering an Empire

Wii

Build-A-Bear Workshop: Friendship Valley
Cabela's Monster Buck Hunter [with Gun Peripheral]
Cave Story [WiiWare]
Hall of Fame: Ultimate Hoops Challenge
How to Train Your Dragon
Pizza Delivery Boy
Red Steel 2 [Wii MotionPlus Required]
Red Steel 2 + Wii MotionPlus Bundle
Rooms: The Main Building
The Cages: Pro Style Batting Practice

DS

Bakugan: Battle Trainer
Build-A-Bear Workshop: Welcome to Hugsville
Cheer We Go!
Dawn of Heroes
Disney's Stitch Jam
Dream Diary
Drift Street International [DSiWare]

History Egypt - Engineering an Empire
How to Train Your Dragon
Imagine Gymnast
My Pet Chimp
Rooms: The Main Building
Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey
Squishy Tank
Zhu Zhu Pets

Source: Gamespot - Shacknews


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What does AAA stand for?

It's not an abbreviation of anything. It just means the best of the best... 

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