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Today media giant Warner Bros. announced that it has acquired developer Rocksteady Studios, best known for last year’s blockbuster Batman: Arkham Asylum.

According to a Kevin Tsujihara, Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group president, “Rocksteady demonstrated its professionalism and extraordinary development abilities with Batman: Arkham Asylum. This arrangement is a great strategic fit and we are very pleased to solidify our relationship with this talented development team.” Read more… »

Today developer/publisher Red Eagle Games announced that it has partnered up with veteran RPG developer Obsidian Entertainment for the development of games based on Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time book series.

For those of you who don’t know Obsidian Entertainment is associated with some of the most critically acclaimed RPGs. In fact the studio employs a large number of industry veterans from Fallout developer Black Isle. Some titles associated with Obsidian are Knights of the Old Republic II, Neverwinter Nights 2, and the upcoming espionage RPG Alpha Protocol. Read more… »

Yesterday during an analyst conference, Activision CEO Mike Griffith announced that the publisher is going to refocus its rhythm games into two main franchises, Guitar Hero and DJ Hero. According to Griffith, this will help Activision reach a “broader audience.”

In 2010 Activision plans to release less than ten music game SKUs. While that still sounds like a lot, it’s not even half of what 2009 saw. Griffith explained, “This year, fewer SKUs will service a broader audience.” Read more… »

Today Microsoft announced that it plans to shut down Xbox Live service for the original Xbox on April 15. According to Microsoft by discontinuing original Xbox support, it “will allow us to continue evolving the Live service.”

How does this affect you? Well, shutting down Xbox Live for the original Xbox means that all version one Xbox games that are playable on the Xbox 360, as well as Xbox Originals, will no longer be playable online. Read more… »

Today used game trade-in kiosks maker e-Play announced that they have suspended operations, and consequently will be shutting down all of its kiosks at Best Buy and Walmart locations. Some of you may remember, way back in May, when e-Play announced that it will be testing these kiosks at various Walmart and Best Buy locations around the U.S..

Upon investigation of the e-Play website, all I found was the statement, “e-Play, LLC has suspended operations. Thank you to all our customers. For more information call 1-866-602-6014.” Read more… »

Today developer Valve released some details about its Steam service, specifically pertaining to how its user base grew in 2009.

According to Valve Steam now has over 25 million active accounts, a 25% increase from 2008. Another note worthy statistic is that software sales on Steam increased by over 205% during 2009, “marking the fifth straight year the platform has realized over 100% year-over-year growth in unit sales.”  Read more… »

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Today publisher Ubisoft unveiled its new solution to DRM on the PC. The new DRM will not rely on CD checks or installation limits, but rather a simple online authentication that features a ‘cloud’ service that stores saved game online.

The one draw back to Ubisoft’s new system is that you must authenticate every time you wish to play a game. That means there is no offline support. Read more… »

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Today developer DICE confirmed that North American residents who purchase Battlefield: Bad company 2 for the Xbox 360 or PS3 will have to do some extra legwork to gain access to the shooter’s Squad Rush multiplayer mode within the the first thirty days of the games release. BC2, which arrives March 2, will only allow gamers who pre-ordered the game from GameStop to access the four vs. four Squad Rush multiplayer mode until April 1.

While this is a pretty crappy move on DICE’s part, at least gamers who pre-order BC2 will be able to invite their friends to play with them, even if they didn’t pre-order the game. Also PC gamers and gamers outside of North America will have access to this game mode without any  pre-order fuss. Read more… »

avatar

Avatar was a technological revolution; it brought the aspect of 3D in movies from a gimmicky add-on to the forefront of the future of movie going. Too bad the same can’t be said about the licensed game.

In an effort to not continue to release games that suck, Ubisoft announced today that they plan to spend less on licensed products as they have done in the past. It makes sense, since their efforts at making movies are far superior. Read more… »

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In a recent interview, Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick has some choice words regarding the publisher’s use of the Spider Man IP.

Kotick stated, “Our Spider-Man games have sucked for the last five years. They are bad games. They were poorly rated because they were bad games. We went away from what is Spider-Man. It’s about web-slinging. If you don’t do web-slinging right, what is the fantasy of Spider-Man?” Read more… »

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Today word got out that Korean games developer and publisher Hanbitsoft has acquired the rights to Flagship Studios’s new defunct MMO Hellgate: London in North America, Europe, and Japan. Apparently Hanbitsoft feels like there is some money to be made there because the company plans to re-release the game is those regions, as well as in China, Taiwan, and South East Asia later this year.

For those of you who don’t remember (or chose to forget) Hellgate: London was an MMO made by a team of Blizzard Entertainment veterans who parted ways with the gaming giant in hopes of founding their own studio, Flagship. When Hellgate launched the game was plagued with bugs and billing issues, causing many gamers to cancel their subscriptions. Read more… »

Netflix on Wii

In an effort to expand Nintendo’s user base to MORE than every single man, woman, and child in the world, it was just announced by The New York Times that Netflix, everybody’s favorite Blockbuster replacement, is officially coming to Wii.

No longer content to be the only next-gen (*cough*) system without Netflix capability, Reggie and Co. are hopping on the bandwagon.  They’re even going the PS3 route and requiring you to have a special disc in the system to access the Netflix queue.  There’s just ONE little problem…

Read more… »