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A screenshot such as this may be all that a developer needs to get a good number of gamers excited. This one in particular comes from Firefall, Red 5 Studios’ persistent world shooter MMO set to release late next year. A sophisticated look at this shot reveals the artful line of attention drawn by the gun sight pointed at the giant Titan looming in the distance. The excitement, however, may come just from the fact that there are guns and monsters in the game.

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video is worth a billion, or a gazillion. Red 5 didn’t disappoint in this department. The initial trailer, even with its almost generic monsters and over-the-top artillery, wowed droves gamers at 2010′s Penny Arcade Expo. The subsequent gameplay video solidified Firefall as one of the highly anticipated titles of 2011. Which video do you think we posted after the jump?

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Early Friday morning, GameTrailers revealed the world premier trailer of Telltale Games’ long awaited episodic adventure, Back To The Future The Game. Back in June, Telltale released a teaser announcing the project along with a Jurrasic Park title. For six months, fans have been on pins and needles — and for anyone (including myself) following the hype, this particular trailer was supposed to be epic. Telltale themselves said, “it looks fantastic!”

All subjectivity aside, there can be an argument as to why the trailer fails or succeeds in delivering 1.21 jiggawatts of excitement. It lends itself perfectly to this next installment on what it takes to hype up a game right, or wrong. A bit of fair warning, this article bears potentially gruesome videos after the jump.  We’ll let you decide why they’re both gruesome.

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Way back in August my buddy Kevin Miller published his review of the video game streaming service OnLive. While he was impressed with the technology, one of Kevin’s biggest complaints was the pricing structure.

Apparently OnLive was listening because today they announced that starting January 15, there will be a new subscription option which features a flat $9.99 rate per month. Dubbed the ‘OnLive PlayPack’ subscription, this option will feature a “growing library” of “recent, classic and indie titles.” You probably should note that there is a limited selection of titles that fall under the ‘OnLive PlayPack’ subscription. To see what they are, hit the jump. Read more… »

When Facebook is viewed as a console, it seems all the glamor and flash surrounding it gets violently sucked into a bottomless pit and all the power it boasts as a gaming giant turns out to be a charade. Hardcore console and PC gamers may view this statement and say, “good riddance. Enough said. Let’s move on with our day.”

We would be remiss, however, not to ground the ‘Facebook as a console’ concept in tangible facts. Also, what is a good news article without a comment from EA? So, let’s get into the nitty gritty and see how Facebook is setting itself up for a serious beating in the gaming world.

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These words may not seem so synonymous with video game publishers, especially given several titles that have recently been released to the ire of many a gamer. As an example, just search “The Force Unleashed II rushed” to find reviewers and fans alike commenting on how the game reeks of poor quality most likely because of deadline pressures dealt to the developers. While we’re not saying outright that LucasArts set an unbelievably short deadline for The Force Unleashed II, we are nodding to a very real occurrence that forces great studios to make horrible games (for another example, search Krome Studios).

One of the biggest publishers in the industry, EA Games, riots against this phenomenon. Amongst comments on work culture and the extinct movie-game sub-industry, president Frank Gibeau gave the most logical explanation on how great games are made: if developers are given more time, they turn out better quality.

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Sony Computer Entertainment Europe’s studio director, Mick Hocking revealed that the Playstation 3 will soon play host to more than 50 3D titles. “[A]nd this number is growing fast,” he told magazine Develop. Hocking explained that many industries are investing heavily in the technology and that once consumers see the sheer power and range of what it has to offer, people will come flocking — not only to 3D gaming, but to 3D technology as a whole implemented into film, television shows and even websites.

We have already seen the film industry embracing it with the likes of Avatar, the more recent Megamind and soon to be released Tron: Legacy. Despite this, there is still reluctance on the public’s side mainly because of the price tag. Tickets are double the regular cost and the average 3D TV resides in the neighborhood of about $3,000 (glasses not included). But let’s look ahead, as Hocking does.

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“Universal Console”. These two words have been thrown around for quite some time. In 2007, Silicon Knights president Denis Dyak gave a presentation at Game Convention entitled A One Console Future. Eat, Sleep, Play, Inc. co-founder David Jaffe has also put out the call for a “single standard” platform in his blog Criminal Crackdown.

The concept is gaining reinvigorated press today with an interview between CVG and David Reeves, Capcom COO. Reeves views the universal console, or ‘console agnosticism’, as something close to inevitable, and predicts that it will happen in the next 10 to 15 years. Gamers may not have to wait that long — OnLive is definitely throwing its hat in the ring as the console-to-end-all-other-consoles with the December 2 release of its $99 OnLive game system, touting that you can “[p]lay games instantly” with “[n]o high-end hardware required” and “[n]o patching or upgrading” needed.

When all is said and done, the OnLive game system may be more than that. Read more… »

Update: Blizzard released the following statement in regards to the job postings:  “We’re exploring a Diablo-related concept for consoles and are currently looking to fill a few senior console-related positions on the Diablo III team. As we’ve said in the past, with proper care the gameplay could suit the console platform, and we’re interested in seeing what talent out there might be interested in such a project. If you’re passionate about all things Diablo and have the requisite skill and experience, then head over to our jobs site to check out the positions and apply.

Please note that this is not an announcement of a console title. We are first and foremost developing Diablo III for Windows and Mac PCs and don’t intend to allow any possibility of a console interpretation to delay or affect the release of the game.”

Well I guess that means console gamers won’t be slaying demons along side their PC brethren on Battle.net anytime soon. Hopefully, somewhere down the line, Blizzard will show a little love to those who play with controllers rather then just to those with the keyboards and mice.

Original: Today Blizzard Entertainment added a few job postings to its website that are causing quite a buzz on the Web. Apparently, Blizzard is looking to hire developers with console experience for Diablo III. Now one can only assume that Blizzard would want to hire console developers because they are planning a Diablo III console port, right?

While this may sound a little crazy to some gamers, (I mean Blizzard is pretty dedicated to developing for the PC) it is important to remember that the original Diablo hit the PlayStation one year after being releases on the PC. You also can’t forget about the of StarCraft N64 port. Read more… »

It seems that now-a-days your game isn’t a triple-A title unless it has some sort of social media tie in. It should come as no surprise to gamers that EA’s next iteration of the Dragon Age series will be preceded by a Facebook minigame.

Dubbed Dragon Age Legends, this promotional strategy RPG is said to give gamers their “first taste” of the Free Marches, the setting of Dragon Age 2. According to EA 2D general manager Mark Spenner, “Dragon Age Legends will deliver a deep, sophisticated experience, and we will continue to delight gamers by adding new features and content far into the future.” Read more… »

Playdead, most notably known for developing Limbo, was at the Indicade Festival in Culver City, California.  CEO Dino Patti teased Playdead’s new project, saying they are working on a new intellectual property. “I can’t tell much, but I can tell you that if you liked Limbo, it’ll definitely be for you,” Patti said to Joystiq. “The gameplay style you’ll really like. You’ll feel it’s the same team who made it, but everything will be changed.”

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Konami’s Castlevania: Lords of Shadow has been enjoying praise from press outlets and reviews.  The game, which was released October 5 in North America and October 7 in Europe, has been hailed as setting a new standard for the previously lackluster track record of 3D Castlevania.  The game’s composer, Oscar Arujo, was happy enough to admit a sequel is already in the planning phase.

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Last night, at the first ever Games Developers Choice Online Awards, Riot Games and their DotA clone, League of Legends, cleaned house by winning five out of nine awards. The awards ran the gamut from ‘Best Online Game Design’ to ‘Best Online Technology.’

Other noteworthy winners include EVE Online for ‘Best Live Game,’ World of Warcraft for ‘Best Community Relations’ and NCSoft’s Aion for ‘Best Audio for an Online Game’. Read more… »