In the News #20 – 2/6/2008

Daily News for February 6th, 2008.

  • Age of Conan has been censored in Germany according to Funcom, developer of the game. Other European territories, along with the United States, get a full version with enhanced dismemberment, decapitation, over-the-top kills, and nipples. Yes, that’s right…nipples. More than 500,000 people have already signed up to join the Age of Conan community.
  • The first set of downloadable content has been announced for Mass Effect. The pack is called Bring Down the Sky and is scheduled for a release on March 10 at 2AM PST for 400 Microsoft Points (US $5.)
  • Ubisoft announced today that Assassin’s Creed is coming to PC at the end of March. This version of the game is called “Assassin’s Creed, Director’s cut edition” and will feature four brand new exclusive types of investigations.
  • A recent news letter sent out by ESRB states that only 6% of the 1,563 games released last year were rated M for Mature. Nearly 60% were rated E for Everyone.

    ESRB Ratings
  • The HD-DVD player add-on for the Xbox 360 has had a price drop of $50.00. It can now be bought for $129.00 in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
  • Medal of Honor Heroes 2 may not have multiplayer after all. This feature has apparently been taken out of the game. More details are sure to come soon.
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In the News – #9

This past week’s video game news that we missed out on while we were away. Video Game News for the week of January 10th – January 16th, 2008.

  • Super Smash Bros. Brawl has been delayed by a month. Up until recently, is was scheduled for a release in February; but it has now been delayed until March 9th. The Japanese version of the game will be released on January 31st, a one week delay from the January 24th.
  • The makers of The Orange Box –Valve – have acquired (bought out) Turtle Rock Studios, the developers behind the upcoming Left 4 Dead co-op FPS.
  • A new map pack has been released for Strangelhold, which features 10 new multiplayer maps, 21 new characters, and 10 new achievements worth 250 gamerpoints total. It can be downloaded on Xbox Live or Playstation Network.
  • The 20 and 60GB Playstation 3’s have finally been discontinued in Japan. The only version of the Playstation 3 console that is available now in Japan is the 40GB one, which doesn’t have PS2 backwards capabilities. 80GB Playstation 3’s are not sold in Japan.
  • Ubisoft has acquired (yet again, bought out) Japanese video game development studio Digital Kids. Digital Kids is responsible for the DS game series Petz.
  • Details for the Assassin’s Creed DS game have been released. Go read Wired’s article on the details.
  • Which are you more tired of: Video Game adaptions of movies, or movie adaptions of video games? We have to admit though, this one might be a pretty good one if they ever go through with it. A BioShock movie may just be in the making. No details or official confirmations as of yet.
  • Take 2 has officially dropped the College Hoops franchise. Here’s what they told Kotaku:

    2K Sports has decided not to continue negotiations with the CLC for the license for its top-rated College Hoops franchise, which would have been released next in November 2008. We are committed to providing fans with high-quality, critically-acclaimed sports games, but given our disciplined approach to the business, we do not believe the current discussions would result in an acceptable outcome.

  • The sequel to Resistance: Fall of Man has been revealed. Early reports say that Resistance 2 will support two campaigns, multiplayer battles of up to 60 people, and eight-person online co-op play. Unconfirmed reports say the game will support three character classes–including a heavy weapons, special operations, and the all-important medic. It will also incorporate vehicles, including the alien-built Stalker, which will have cloaking abilities. We will have more info on Resistance 2 later.
  • Spore is apparently coming to PCs and Macs (yes, Macs too) in 2008 (this year.)
  • And here’s the list of the nominees for the 2008 Writers Guild Awards’s Honored Video Game Writers:
    • Crash of the Titans – Writer Christopher Mitchell (Sierra Entertainment)
    • Dead Head Fred – Writers Dave Ellis and Adam Cogan (D3 Publisher)
    • The Simpsons Game – Lead Writer Matt Selman, Writers Tim Long and Matt Warburton, Dialogue Jeff Poliquin (EA)
    • The Witcher – Lead Story Designer Artur Ganszyniec, Dialogue Sebastian Stepien, Additional Dialogue Marcin Blacha, writers Sande Chen and Anne Toole (Atari)
    • World in Conflict – Story Design Christofer Emgard, Story Consultant Larry Bond, Script Consultant Ed Zuckerman (Sierra Entertainment)

Top 10 games for November 2007

  1. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (X360, Infinity Ward, Activision) 1.57 million
  2. Super Mario Galaxy (Wii, Nintendo) 1.12 million
  3. Assassin’s Creed (X360, Ubisoft Montreal, Ubisoft) 980,000
  4. Guitar Hero III: Legends Of Rock Bundle (PS2, Budcat, Activision) 967,000
  5. Wii Play with remote (Wii, Nintendo) 564,000
  6. Mass Effect (X360, BioWare, Microsoft) 473,000
  7. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (PS3, Infinity Ward, Activision) 444,000
  8. Guitar Hero III: Legends Of Rock Bundle (Wii, Vicarious Visions, Activision) 426,000
  9. Halo 3 (X360, Bungie, Microsoft) 387,000
  10. Assassin’s Creed (PS3, Ubisoft Montreal, Ubisoft) 377,000

Are these the Top 10 games kids shouldn’t play?

  • Assassin’s Creed
    Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
    Conan
    The Darkness
    Clive Barker’s Jericho
    Kane & Lynch: Dead Men
    Manhunt 2
    Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles
    John Woo Presents Stranglehold
    Timeshift

Graphic scenes of gunshot victims spurting blood and a jailer urinating into a prisoner’s cell are included among the 10 video games that some media warns should be avoided by kids and teens under the age of 17.

A scene from Assassin’s Creed depicts an attacker plunging a knife into his victim’s back several times. A jailer in Manhunt 2 taunts his prisoner by urinating into the man’s cell. A fallen victim’s body is riddled with gunfire as blood spurts across the screen in The Darkness.

All of the games listed above are rated M – for mature.

“There’s an endless stream of new games that will never be suitable for children,” said Rep. Betty McCollum, D-Minn..

“M” is a rating by ESRB (Entertainment Software Rating Board) which is intended for players 17 and older.

Mass Effect

The Mass Effect Launch Center here on our site has just been officially launched. Reviews, trailers, and other things will be posted soon.

Here is a little something I am sure some of you didn’t know. Did you know that some fans have been waiting for the release of Mass Effect since the year 2004? Rumors of the game started in Decemeber of 2004. Mass Effect wasn’t officially announced until almost one year later in October 2005.

Also, our Assassin’s Creed Launch Center will be taken down soon and will be downsized to a smaller page here on the site.

Assassin’s Creed Releases Today

UPDATE: More Reviews added. IGN has also posted a, Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 Head-to-Head Showdown of Assassin’s Creed. It is for the Insider’s Club only.

Stay Tuned for coveraging coming later today.

UPDATE: Assassin’s Creed has been released, and this means a lot of coverage from around the gaming world.

IGN.com has posted their 4-page review. Their overall score is a shocking 7.7/10. The only other review that gave it a surprisingly lower rating than the rest is 1UP.com’s review. We have also added all of the reviews that have been release so far to our Assassin’s Creed Review Page.

Yahoo! Video Games went ahead and post Video Review as well. IGN did the same and also posted a Video Review. Some people would rather watch reviews than read them, how sad.We have also posted a list of achievments you can find on our new page Unlockables.

As soon as hints and cheats are released, we will be sure to post them here on the site (If there are any.) If there is any more news to come, we’ll have it for you.

Also in Assassin’s Creed News:
Assassin’s Creed has had its retail launch in Australia and New Zealand pushed back one week. Both the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions were slated to go on sale this Thursday, but the game will now go on sale on Wednesday, November 21, Australia-wide.

The delay will impact only Australian and New Zealand gamers.

In a statement sent to Australian retailers, Ubisoft blamed seasonal issues for the delay.

“Due to manufacturing and freight difficulties during this time of year, Ubisoft Australia & New Zealand were unable to receive their full allocation of Assassins Creed stock required to fulfill all Day One orders,” the statement said.

“In an effort to treat all retailers and consumers fairly, Ubisoft will wait until the balance of stock is received in our warehouse before we ship the game.”

This week’s releases – #1

Monday, November 12th, 2007
Are you Smarter than a 5th grader? – DS
Blacksite: Area 51 – PC, Xbox 360
Boogie – Playstation 2
Spongebob: Atlantis Squarepantis – Wii

Super Mario Galaxy – Wii
Ultimate Mortal Kombat – DS
Warhammer 40,000: Squad Command – PSP

Tuesday, November 13th, 2007
Alien Vs. Predator: Requiem – PSP
Assassin’s Creed
– Playstation 3, Xbox 360
Assassin’s Creed (Limited Edition) – Playstation 3, Xbox 360
Baby Pals – DS
Beowulf: The Game – PC, Playstation 3, Xbox 360
Cabela’s Big Game Hunter 2008 – Wii
Contra 4 – DS
Cooking Mama 2: Cooking With Friends – DS
Darkness Within: In Pursuit of Loath Nolder – PC
Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3 – Playstation 2 
EA Sports 07 Collection – PC
Everquest II: Rise of Kunark – PC
EverQuest: Secrets of Faydwer – PC
Fire Pro Wrestling Returns – Playstation 2
Geometry Wars: Galaxies – Wii
Imagine: Fashion Designer – PC
Jenga – DS
Kane & Lynch: Dead Men – PC, Playstation 3, Xbox 360
King of Fighters XI – Playstation 2
Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Anniversary – Wii
Medal of Honor: Heroes 2 – PSP,Wii
Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops + – PSP
Monster Jam 07 – Playstation 2, Xbox 360, DS
Need for Speed ProStreet – PC, Playstation 2, Playstation 3, Xbox 360, Wii, DS
Next Life – PC
Orcs & Elves – DS
Petz Catz 2 – PC, Playstation 2, Wii, DS
Petz Dogz 2 – PC, Playstation 2, Wii, DS
Petz: Hamsterz Life 2 – DS
Petz Horsez 2 – PC, Playstation 2, Wii, DS
Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords – Playstation 2
Rayman Raving Rabbids 2 – Wii, DS
Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles – Wii
SimCity Societies – PC
Soldier of Fortune: Pay Back – PC, Xbox 360
Sonic Rivals 2 – PSP
Smarty Pants – Wii
Strawberry Shortcake: The Four Seasons Cake – DS
WWE SmackDown! vs. Raw 2008 – Playstation 2, Playstation 3, PSP, Xbox 360, Wii, DS
WWE SmackDown! vs. Raw 2008 (Special Edition) – Playstation 3

Wednesday, November 14th, 2007
The Lost Crown: A Ghost-hunting Adventure – PC
Shadowgrounds Survivor – PC
Shrek-N-Roll – Xbox 360

Thursday, November 15th, 2007
America’s Army: True Soldiers – Xbox 360
Impossible Mission – DS
Left Behind: Eternal Forces Expansion Pack – PC
Super FruitFall – DS
WordJong – DS

Friday, November 16th, 2007
Agatha Christie: And Then There Were None – Wii
Code Lyoko: Quest for Infinity – Wii
Crysis – PC 
Crysis: Special Edition – PC
Ghost In The Sheet – PC

Monday, November 19th, 2007 
Avatar: The Last Airbender — The Burning Earth – Xbox 360
College Hoops 2K8 – Playstation 2, Playstation 3, Xbox 360
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation: Dark Motives – DS
Link’s Crossbow Training – Wii
Mario Party DS – DS
Medal of Honor: Airborne – Playstation 3
TimeShift – Playstation 3
Unreal Tournament III
– PC
Unreal Tournament III (Collector’s Edition) – PC
 

Next-Week’s Big Releases 
Elder Scrolls IV: The Shivering Isles  Playstation 3
Mass Effect – Xbox 360
Rock Band – Playstation 3
Rock Band: Special Edition – Playstation 3, Xbox 360
Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune Playstation 3, Xbox 360

* All dates are based off of IGN.com.
* All dates are subject to change and may vary by store.
* Games highlighted in Blue are the highly anticipated games.