Between Sega Europe's painful restructuring and Activision's dismantling of Radical Entertainment, this past week has been another one of those weeks that we'd rather forget. It's always unfortunate when people lose their jobs, and downsizing doesn't often instill confidence that the affected industry is moving in the right direction. These moves are a continuation of the state of correction that the video game industry is in—especially in the console sector.
Sony was up next. Despite a dearth of PlayStation Vita game announcements, there were some worthy announcements like Assassins Creed III on the Vita featuring the first female assassin. Other highlights from the show included David Cage's Beyond, PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, WonderBooks and Naughty Dogs' The Last of Us. The Last of Us was worth the price of admission.
On this episode we examine the state of Portable Games. Brad also brings Dragon's Dogma to the table, and Mike and Chi weigh in on Max Payne 3. This episode also features what is surely the greatest Thumbs up, thumbs down of all time! With Dylan Collins, Chi Kong Lui, Brad "Bromance" Gallaway, Mike Bracken and special guest Michael Cunningham.
Mortal Kombat and Portal 2 combined last April to move well over 1.5 million units. Compare the significance of those two games with Kinect Star Wars, and Prototype 2. You really can't. Even adding The Witcher 2 to the mix, these games simply don't have the same kind of selling power as last April's slate of game releases. Without prominent and captivating game releases, consumers aren't going to spend money on software… or hardware, for that matter.
The simple truth is that if you spend your time at PAX waiting around in line for a demo you'll play on Xbox Live in a few months anyway, you are a chump. There are so many awesome games from smaller publishers and indies on the floor that you might not get exposed to anywhere else. So, if you were being a linefool, here's some of what you missed.
The convention's stealthy aspect kicked off with a great panel on the subject featuring Nels Anderson, Andy Schatz, and Dan Silvers, chaired by Matthew Weise, also featuring the con's largest single-room concentration of guys in suits.
I don't know about you but the side-scrolling platformer wasn't just a genre, it was the genre for most of my childhood. The games that got it right were the ones that kept ushering you forward—to the right—even when it only seemed to be getting tougher.
There is probably some life lesson or allegory in there somewhere. This video with its nice editing and great music does a good job of highlighting that.
I knew very little about XCOM before the show, but now it's one of my most anticipated titles. A re-imagining of the classic PC strategy series, Enemy Unknown gave me a very distinct Frozen Synapse vibe, which makes sense since it was itself heavily influenced by the XCOM games. There was no playable demo at the show and the presentation consisted of a pre-beta build, but I liked what I saw and will likely be picking it up when it releases.
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