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Just 1.9 percent of mobile players make a purchase, says new report

The volume of players in free-to-play mobile is simply staggering, but few of them make purchases — we knew that, sure, but now we have some fresh numbers. …


Gamasutra News

[Update] Nintendo Addresses Report That It Is Ending Wii U Production In 2016

Update: We continue to wait for an official statement from Nintendo of America. However, the company's Japanese arm has issued a comment addressing a report that Wii U production will cease in 2016.

Kotaku has surfaced a comment given to Japan's IT Media. Nintendo reportedly suggests that the Nikkei story from yesterday is "not an announcement from the Company" and that it intends to produce the Wii U into the next fiscal year.

That begins on April 1, 2016. And while some are considering the Nintendo comment as a flat denial, the original Nikkei report simply said that Nintendo would end production in 2016. It is possible that both of the statements are true.

Original Story (March 22, 2016 @ 12:51 p.m. Central):

A new report out of Japan suggests big changes on the hardware front. Nintendo may be set to cease production of the Wii U.

According to Nikkei the company be looking to deplete its existing stock. The publication suggests that some accessories have already ended their production runs, though no specifics have been indicated.

Nintendo has promised it would share more information on its next hardware, NX, in 2016. Whether that will be at E3 or a standalone event during the year is unclear.

The company has also not yet committed to a launch window for the hardware, and the Nikkei report doesn’t suggest that a Wii U wind-down necessarily means an NX release in 2016.

We’ve reached out to Nintendo for comment. We’ll update should we received a response.

[Source: Nikkei via Dr. Serkan Toto on Twitter]

 

Our Take
A reveal and release in the same year isn’t out of the question at all, but this report doesn’t guarantee that’s what’s happening. I’m eager to learn more about the NX, but more importantly I’m disappointed that the Wii U never lived up to its potential.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Report: This is the year Nintendo stops manufacturing the Wii U

Japanese media outlet Nikkei has published a brief report (in Japanese) today that Nintendo intends to cease manufacturing its Wii U console and Wii U accessories by the end of 2016. …


Gamasutra News

Report: Nintendo To Cease Production Of Wii U During 2016

A new report out of Japan suggests big changes on the hardware front. Nintendo may be set to cease production of the Wii U.

According to Nikkei the company be looking to deplete its existing stock. The publication suggests that some accessories have already ended their production runs, though no specifics have been indicated.

Nintendo has promised it would share more information on its next hardware, NX, in 2016. Whether that will be at E3 or a standalone event during the year is unclear.

The company has also not yet committed to a launch window for the hardware, and the Nikkei report doesn’t suggest that a Wii U wind-down necessarily means an NX release in 2016.

We’ve reached out to Nintendo for comment. We’ll update should we received a response.

[Source: Nikkei via Dr. Serkan Toto on Twitter]

 

Our Take
A reveal and release in the same year isn’t out of the question at all, but this report doesn’t guarantee that’s what’s happening. I’m eager to learn more about the NX, but more importantly I’m disappointed that the Wii U never lived up to its potential.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Report: Taiwanese Ratings Board Lists BioShock: The Collection With Box Art

A Taiwanese ratings board has a listing and box art for BioShock: The Collection on PS4, Xbox One, and PC.

Twitter user lifelower provided a link to the ratings board. No other details are given by the listing, such as a release date or the Collection's full contents, but it's alluring nonetheless.

Previously, lifelower spotted an Xbox One ratings listing for Rocket League that turned out to be correct.

[Source: gamerating.org.tw via lifelower on twitter]

 

Our Take
If this collection includes DLC for BioShock Infinite, that would be great. 

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Report: Chinese mining corp to buy Runescape dev for $300 million

[UPDATE: acquisition not yet complete?] In a move straight out of the blue, Chinese mining outfit Shandong Honda has acquired Runescape developer Jagex for $ 300 million.  …


Gamasutra News

Report: J.J. Abrams Confirms Portal And Half-Life Movies Are Still Underway

Star Wars director J.J. Abrams has confirmed that, yes, the Half-Life and Portal movies announced at DICE 2013 are still happening.

IGN interviewed J.J. Abrams about the recent 10 Cloverlane movie, and the topic of the director's film partnership with Valve was quickly touched upon. "Not yet, but they're in development," he said. "We've got writers, and we're working on both those stories, but nothing that would be an exciting update."

Outside of DICE 2013 and this short interview, there has been very little news about the upcoming films. Meanwhile, Valve has put its focus on its virtual reality headset the HTC Vive, which has pre-orders going for $ 800 and is expected to ship in April.

[Source: IGN]

Our Take
Valve's Half-Life and Portal series are stellar games, and with the right actors and a brilliant director like J.J. Abrams at the head, these movies could turn out to be really cool. However, production sounds like it's still in its early days if they're still at the writing stage, so it may be a while yet until we see these movies released. 

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Report: Retailer Listing Points To Star Wars Battlefront DLC Release Date

Star Wars Battlefront Outer Rim DLC is looking to release in early April, at the price of $ 15 USD, according to a leaked GameStop retail listing (Disclosure: GameStop is Game Informer's parent company).

The product description reads that players will "fight among the factories of Sullust and battle within Jabba the Hutt's palace on Tatooine." For those with a season pass, which is priced at $ 50 USD, the DLC will come at no extra cost.

The extra content includes a new playable mode, four new maps, new weapons, and Sullustan rebel Nien Nunb and Rodian bounty hunter Greedo as two new playable characters. Extraction, the new mode, will have players "extracting valuable content" while chasing against the clock. The extra content is expected to go live at 9:00 AM CST on April 5. For more on Battlefront, check out our breakdown on the game's season pass content and trailer for the upcoming Hutt Contracts

[Source: GameStop]


Our Take
Season pass holders will be getting this content two weeks early, meaning that if this date is accurate, EA will still hit its projected March release for pass holders. With the amount of content they seem to be adding, from new maps and characters, the price seems pretty reasonable.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Report: Zelda Picross Game To Be Given Away As My Nintendo Reward

A gamer has found My Nintendo Picross – The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess on Nintendo servers, and the game will reportedly be offered as a free title for the company's upcoming My Nintendo rewards program.

Twitter user Cellenseres posted a shot of the title, and a post on NeoGAF links to the above shot from the 3DS eshop. The link URL uses the nintendo.net domain instead of the normal nintendo.com, however, nintendo.net is indeed owned by Nintendo.

The My Nintendo program starts later this month, but Nintendo has not yet announced My Nintendo Picross or any free games. This info comes on the heels of the Twilight Princess HD remake for Wii U. You can read our impressions of that for more.

[Source: Cellenseres on Twitter via NeoGAF]

 

Our Take
Whether you get this game for free via the program or have to redeem points for it, more Picross is always good.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed

Report: Microsoft’s Console Strategy Shift May Include Modular Hardware Add-Ons

Earlier today, we reported on a presentation and an interview with Phil Spencer from an Xbox showcase last week. Spencer mentioned that the company’s Universal Windows approach was going to have positive impact for gamers, and that Microsoft may be rethinking its approach to the traditional console cycle.

We also heard that Microsoft will be adjusting its platform strategy. “We’ll actually see us come out with new hardware capability during a generation and allowing the same games to run backward and forward compatible because we have the Universal Windows Application running on top of the Universal Windows Platform that allows us to focus more on hardware innovation without invalidating the games that run on that platform,” he said.

This clearly points to the importance of backward compatibility and library longevity. However, Polygon and The Guardian are reporting that Microsoft said it is considering offering hardware upgrades along the lines of how PC owners can enhance capabilities one component at at time.

In speaking about iteration though, Spencer specifically points to how Sony is adding VR capability to PlayStation 4. It’s unclear what kinds of hardware upgrades Microsoft might add to the Xbox One or if that will even happen. Spencer declined to commit to a specific roadmap.

"Phil’s comments touched on his vision and is an example of the potential of the Universal Windows Platform," a Microsoft representative told us when we attempted to get clarification and confirmation. "We remain committed to console innovation and believe there will always be a need for gaming and entertainment on the big screen in the living room. We’re inspired by what the future holds but we have nothing to announce at this time."

Microsoft's equivocation leaves the matter in the air. The company refused to directly address the assertion about the modular console plans. When we followed-up asking for an up-or-down confirmation or denial, we were told that the company had nothing more to add. 

[Source: The GuardianPolygon]

 

Our Take
Our takeaway from Spencer’s statements was a bit different. It's not clear if "new hardware capability during a generation" means modular upgrades or faster hardware cycles to align to today's mobile-centric user base. Despite our efforts to get as clear a picture as possible, we were unable to either confirm or refute the assertion that incremental upgrades are under development or even serious consideration.

www.GameInformer.com – The Feed