Patent troll haters, take heart: The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill explicitly designed to punish companies for abusive use of patents today. …
Lego builder Paul Hetherington has a special talent for bringing the home-base of Batman's most iconic foe to life. It's not a direct reference to a specific location from the Arkham games, or the Lego Batman games, but it would fit comfortably in either one.
The creation is impressive in photographs, which you can see more of here, but it's not until you see it in motion that you begin to understand why it easily won best in show at BrickCon. Check it the video below to see all of its moving parts in action.
(Please visit the site to view this media)
Earlier this month we featured a very impressive Lego rendition of the Arkham Asylum, which you can check out here.
[Source: Brothers Brick]
Volition’s Steve Jaros shares the real story behind Saints Row IV’s ‘Enter The Dominatrix’ DLC, which began life as a Saints Row the Third expansion and ended as experimental interactive cinema. …
Last week, on the eve of the PlayStation 4 launch, we had the chance to chat with Sony Computer Entertainment CEO Andrew House. during our conversation, we spoke about the shift in messaging the new hardware, the decision process of choosing release dates, and balancing developer and consumer needs.
One of the big changes that Sony has incorporated into its approach with the PlayStation 4 is supply process. “It’s really important when launching a console in a holiday season that you have a very clear statement around what the value proposition is,” House says. “For us, we returned the company to more simplicity. ‘This is a great experience. It’s priced at $ 399.’ That’s the message consumers are going to see in our advertising.”
Sony has wisely moved away from a two-sku launch, which also helps ensure that buyers don’t have a potentially difficult decision to make at the register. While Americans were largely unhappy with multiple launch skus, other parts of the world prefer them. “Historically, Europeans tend to gravitate more toward a greater variety of value skus,” House says.
Focusing on a single sku also has implications for supply. We asked House how Sony was positioned for this month’s rollout in 32 territories. “[This is] the first platform launch that I’ve ever been involved with where we’ve had such a good production ramp up and a good sense of supply,” he says. “I think that we will be in good supply in the countries that we’ve launched in.”
Sony is also walking the inventory tightrope, trying to make sure that there is enough product in stores for walk-ins throughout the season, but not so much that it creates a perception problem. “You try to strike a balance, particularly for us with such a strong brand in all the European countries and across the Middle East,” House explains. “We are ensuring that we have the broadest reach to ensure that people are satisfied, especially when they’ve been loyal to brand for so long. On the other hand, we’re not engendering frustration by having a shortage of supply. I think through the holiday season that we’ll be in good supply. The sales target that I announced for the company is five million units sold by the end of our fiscal year. March 31, 2014”
While the PlayStation 4 will be in 32 territories before the end of November, Japan will be waiting until next year. “When we choose launch dates, we do it with very careful consideration,” House says. “A huge factor in our determination is where we are seeing the appropriate breadth of great game experiences. There are just some basic differences in that highly networked experiences like online multiplay has taken off to a much greater degree in the US and European markets than it has in some of the Asian markets.”
The markets look for different gaming experiences, and Sony wants to be sure to roll out with an appropriate software lineup for each territory. “We paid careful attention to when we had enough confidence that we would have developed from the ground up experiences that the Japanese consumer would really respond to,” House tells us. “That was the primary decision in pushing back the launch in Japan to a slightly later time period.”
Japan won’t be without a new PlayStation product, though. The Vita TV has just launched in that market, and there is hope that it might arrive on our shores, also. House tells us he was surprised that Western media gravitated toward the device.
“The media response was kind of instant outside of Japan,” he says. “The opportunity for Vita TV in Japan is that you have to-date not seen quite the uptake in video streaming services that you’ve seen in many of the other countries. With a really good understanding of the Japanese entertainment consumer, we had the opportunity for a first-mover advantage. With a device that has a critical differentiating factor, which is great Vita games of which there are a proliferation in Japan, and combined with delivering streaming video services, we could in essence create that market.”
House also took the opportunity to further dispel one of the myths surrounding the run-up to E3 this year. “I was genuinely surprised in the whole discussion around DRM about one thing, which was the assumption or suspicion that we would try to drive the consumer down a very controlled path,” he says. “That surprised me, because it was so far from our intentions, and that’s exactly why we felt it so important to make a very clear statement of intent at E3 and beyond.”
The conversation turned to the trickiness of balancing constituencies as a platform holder. “I take what I hope is a balanced view on that, and it’s the balanced view that any platform holder needs to take,” House says. “What I mean by that is the balance between understanding very strong concerns of folks whose lifeblood is creating great content (and making sure there is recompense for that) and the other school of thought that it’s a way for the most committed consumers to enjoy a broader range of content than they would if used games did not exist.”
House identifies the value of those that regularly trade in games as having indirect impact. “I’ve seen data that the vast majority of used sales go immediately into additional purchases, that they are not somehow being extracted from the overall game economy,” he says. ”Those folks have a very strong influence. Their opinions really count, and they translate into a broader audience purchasing more games. As with many of the debates, the truth probably lies somewhere in the middle. Our approach is, therefore, to balance those two constituencies.”
The Forced team banded together for three years, living and working. They told their store in an image which became huge on Imgur and Reddit. This post speaks to the power of viral sharing. …
Ubisoft has announced a new Open House event for the upcoming title, The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot.
Starting today and running until November 4, anyone can join in the quest to gain fame and fortune in Opulencia. The Open House gives everyone a sneak peek of The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot while the game is still in closed beta.
To get into the holiday spirit, Halloween-themed castles have been created and Halloween themes and costumes are available for a limited time. Players can customize with new items including a glowing pumpkin head, bat winged headgear, and cool costumes for your looters. The exclusive Bat Wings will be granted to every player joining the Haunted Open House.
Players can sign up or sign in with their existing Uplay account at The Mighty Quest website and will be granted immediate access during the event.
Anna Anthropy, developer of the powerful autobiographical flash title Dys4ia, has revealed a new project: a digital choose-your-own-adventure entitled A Very Very Very Scary House. Built in part with the interactive story tool Twine, the game is available now for $ 2.
“Investigate the scariest house you’ve ever seen!” the description for the title proclaims, noting the game has 58 unique endings. “This is probably the largest Twine story i’ve ever written, at over 11,000 words in 197 passages,” Anthropy wrote on her blog. A Very Very Very Scary House, featuring original art from Shelley Yu, represents something of an experiment for the creator, monetizing one of her creations for the first time.
“Putting games behind paywalls is something I’ve been extremely wary about – the people I want my games to reach are the ones most marginalized within games culture as it stands, the ones with the least money and the least access,” Anthropy told Gamasutra.
“Why would I buy a Twine game for two dollars when I can get all of these polished indie games [emphasis hers] for the same amount? This is an attempt at pushback, at establishing a precedent for folks to be able to sell little Twine zines and make some money off their work,” she added in her blog post announcing the game’s availability.
For more on Anna Anthropy and her unique and personal games, be sure to read Joystiq’s original feature Games on the Fringe.
Diablo 3 project director John Hight announced today via Blizzard’s official updates blog that the game’s troubled auction house feature would be shut down by March of next year. …
The Diablo 3 auction house is being sent to the nether realm on March 18, 2014.
“It became increasingly clear that despite the benefits of the AH system and the fact that many players around the world use it, it ultimately undermines Diablo’s core game play: kill monsters to get cool loot,” Blizzard Production Director John Hight writes. “With that in mind, we want to let everyone know that we’ve decided to remove the gold and real-money auction house system from Diablo 3.”
The company believes that this move, along with the upgrades in the upcoming Reaper of Souls expansion, will create a “more rewarding game experience for our players.”
Late last month, Universal Orlando announced that it would adopt a Resident Evil theme for its annual Halloween Horror Nights. Capcom recently revealed the first few images of what the Resident Evil Haunted House would look like.
Above, you can see the iconic Racoon City Police Department, and in the gallery below you will find a safe house with a typewriter.
Universal Orlando Halloween Horror Nights 23 takes place between September 20 and November 2. Head here for more information.
[Source: Capcom Unity]