Microsoft E3 2012 Press Conference, Xbox Entertainment Evolved

Microsoft Press Conference ended about an hour ago and I took some notes. You are welcome. tongue

They called it Xbox Entertainment Evolved, and I'm really digging this music that they are playing before the actual thing starts. I think I'll talk about the games first, and the rest comes later, how would you like that? Good? Yes, okay.

And were are in it. Starting the show with the showstopper, Halo 4 live action/CGI trailer. Then going into some gameplay. Looks totally Halo, but these guys have the technology down a lot better than Bungie ever did, looks gorgeous. Master Chief kicks some ass, fights Covenant and non-Covenant bad guys, Forerunner defensive AI, picks up some Forerunner weapons (it was called Scattershot, so it's probably just a cool looking shotgun). Some story exposition, Cortana is an 8 year old AI, and AI's start deteriorating after 7 years.

Splinter Cell: Blacklist from Ubisoft. Initial disappointment, as Sam Fisher isn't voiced by Michael Ironside anymore. Prequel, reboot? No idea, looks totally cool though. Seems like there are a lot of executions, which basically looks like the game is almost playing itself on those parts. That's probably just the demo though, juiced up the execution meter to show cool shit. Climbing and stuff, seemingly has some Assassin's Creed influences. Spring 2013.

EA brings Kinect to more EA Sports titles. FIFA and Madden NFL will both have voice commands, you can change formations and substitute players on the fly on FIFA. For Madden they bring out Joe Montana on stage, apparently some kind of Hall of Fame quarterback, and he calls plays in Madden with voice commands. That's all totally cool, but I'm never going to play either of those games.

Short trailer break with back to back trailers.
Fable: The Journey, the first person Kinect magic shooter that still looks like it's on rails and also looks like garbage.
Gears of War: Judgment CGI trailer starring your favorite and mine, Beard.
Forza trailer, pretty cars, dubstep. Wub Wub.

Crystal Dynamics showed of the upcoming Tomb Raider reboot. Gameplay looks like some kind of hybrid between the old Tomb Raider exploration and kind of familiar cover based 3rd person shooter. So also kind of like Uncharted, I guess. Lara shoots dudes with a bow, shotgun and performs a pretty brutal and up close knife kill on a dude, and gets in pretty bad shape by riding down a waterfall, flying with a parachute and falling down after that. Looks good, but still not quite sure what the structure of that game is going to be, and I'm still not digging the new voice.

3 new original titles coming to Xbox 2013, short trailers for each.
Ascend: New Gods looks like a 3rd person character action with some Shadow of the Colossus thrown in there.
LocoCycle from Twisted Pixel (the makers of 'Splosion Man), maybe a racing game. They only show a slick looking bike in a very showroom like fashion.
Matter, from the director of Pirates of the Caribbean, a Kinect game.

Capcom came on stage to show some Resident Evil 6. Looks absolutely gorgeous, MT Frameworks is fucking awesome. Zombies, co-op gameplay, melee executions, cover system, grenades, sprinting. Looks like it plays well. Surprisingly lot quicktime events, hard to say if you can fail them or not. Running towards a camera sequence with shit blowing up. Looks so good. And timed DLC exclusivity for Xbox.

Short demo of Wreckateer, Kinect game that's out this summer.

South Park: The Stick of Truth. RPG game developed by Obsidian and with actual involvement by Matt Stone and Trey Parker, you know, the creators of South Park. Looks authentic. You are the new kid on the block, trying to be the 5th member of the group.

Harmonix, Dance Central 3, already. Looks like more Dance Central, and to hammer that in they have a sudden Usher live performance, showing some of the sweet new dance moves.

And last but not least, they ended the show with Call of Duty: Black Ops 2. Looks miles ahead of all previous CoD games, very pretty. Future is now, unmanned war-machines, and someone stole the keys. Dude is sniping with a future sniper rifle through some big-ass concrete blocks, in the interest of time they skip to another sequence where your guy has flying unmanned robot-drones floating around him and he calls support fire from them. Really cool. Flying sequence, impossible to say how much of it was on rails.

No mention of Rare at all. Maybe they are doing the Wreckateer game. How the mighty have fallen.

Then we have the entertainment evolved message. It was kind of scattered across the entire Conference, but I'll just summarize it all here.

Xbox (the brand) brings together all entertainment, also coming to PC's, phones and tablets. Bing search by genre, expanding voice search to 12 additional countries. 35 new entertainment providers across the globe. People love sports, NBA and NHL coming to Xbox. Xbox music service, called Xbox Music. Original, right? Will also be on Windows 8 PC's, tablets and phones. Tons of songs at launch.

Future of fitness with Nike+ Kinect Training. Connected every where, pipes into the Nike+ thing, personal training programs. All that good shit.

Smart devices, getting smarter with Xbox SmartGlass. Basically, an application for your phone or tablet that communicates with your console, and provides you additional information on the things that you are doing. They used an example of watching Game of Thrones on HBO Go, and your tablet shows the map of world and other nonsense like that. Additionally they showed how you can watch a movie on a tablet, pause and just kind of throw it to the console and continue from where you left it. So it's all connected. Also works as a remote for your Xbox if that's your desire.

They stressed very much that you already have these devices, and all you need is this application and it's all golden. Works on all smart devices that you might have, iPhones, iPads, Windows 8 tablets and phones, as well as Android devices. The way they stressed that “hey, you already have these devices” makes it very clearly their answer to WiiU and its tablet controller. It seems very plausible that developers could very well take advantage of this connectivity and make very connected experiences in their games.

And that was Microsoft.

Posted in Gaming by Kilu Member on June 04th 2012 at 2:48pm 0 Comments

Nintendo's pre-E3 Nintendo Direct stream

Nintendo will have their proper E3 Press Conference on Tuesday, June 5th 9:00am-10:00am PT, but in addition to that they also decided to have a short Nintendo Direct Stream about the WiiU controller as well as some of the online functionalities of the console. Satoru Iwata stated that the reason for this was simple, there will now be more time for actual games on the actual conference. Sounds reasonable.

The controller has changed some from the prototype they showed last year. It appears even larger than before (I didn't think it would be possible), and the biggest change is probably that the 3DS like circle-pads have been replaced with more traditional looking analog sticks. Players can keep playing a game with just the controller, if TV happens to be unavailable, apparently there is no lag between the two. They will also offer a WiiU Pro controller for more traditional control methods. One thing to note about both of the controllers is that the right analog stick is above the face buttons. That's going to be a little weird, isn't it?

The rest of the stream was about the online features, but in truth they didn't really reveal a whole lot. They talked about Miis and Miiverse (that's Mii Universe if that eluded you), the home screen which is populated by Miis and stuff. Mii this and Mii that. Smiley faces. I kind of tuned out at that point. The message they were probably trying to get across is that "hey, we understand online now", but I guess that remains to be seen. There was no mention of friend-codes or system wide accounts or anything like that. And that was more or less it. Check out these images about the things I just wrote about. You know, the things.



Posted in Gaming by Kilu Member on June 03rd 2012 at 10:12pm 0 Comments

Electronic Entertainment Expo and Konami's Pre-Show

Hey guys, E3 is right around the corner (it really is, again), so I figured that I'd try and cover some of the exciting gaming news that is bound to drop from the 5 big Press Conferences and maybe from the show floor as well. No promises though, I may accidentally forget about it and play Diablo 3 instead.

The Press Conferences start rolling out on the 4th of June with Microsoft (9:30am-11:00am PT), followed by EA (1:00pm- 2:00pm), Ubisoft (3:00pm-4:00pm) and Sony (6:00pm-7:30pm). On the next day the only conference is by Nintendo (9:am-10:00am), after which the show floor opens. Or something like that. I think that's accurate, more or less. In any case, Microsoft starts the show in just about 3 days. Here's a GameSpot link for you guys who want to catch it all live. I'm sure other gaming sites have their own live streams of all the things as well, if GameSpot is not your bag.

However, Konami kind of officially got the ball rolling with E3 this year (again, the same was true last year) with their pre-recorded E3 pre-show, called Konami Pimp Reel from here on out. You can watch it yourself from here if you want, but if your time is precious and don't have 30 minutes to spare, here's what you need to know.

They start the pimp reel with social games for Facebook and mobile platforms, by introducing their fairly fresh US based studio for that stuff. It's located right at the heart of all the first party social nonsense with Apple, Google and Facebook right across the street, basically. So far they've made Frogger Pinball and Twilight Chronicle on Facebook, Frogger Pinball on iOS, and have an upcoming Frogger Frenzy. All this nonsense is published by Zynga (groan). Yes, despite all the shit that Zynga is regularly up to, other companies still strike deals with them.

Next up, Pro Evolution Soccer 2013. I haven't cared much about sports games since International SuperStar Soccer on the SNES, so uh... Better ball control, better individualized and unique top players (Christiano Ronaldo as an example, because he runs funny), better dribble control, improved passing, all the good stuff like you'd expect from an evolution of their previous game. Evolution, right? Get it? Yeah.

Zone of The Enders HD collection is next, again. They announced this at last years pre-show thing, and now it's getting closer to release, they promise its arrival for Fall 2012. I have to hand it to Konami with this one, they are definitely doing the work, the quality of the HD conversion looks more in line with the excellence of Metal Gear HD Collection, and not that shitshow that the Silent Hill HD Collection ended up being. They also created a new anime opening for the HD collection with Sunrise, apparently they are some kind of great robot anime studio. Looks pretty good. You can check out the opening over here.

Metal Gear 25 year anniversary stuff was next. Some b-roll of the Smithsonian's The Art of Video Games Exhibition. Followed by Metal Gear Rising trailer. That game looks bananas. It appears to be sufficiently Japanese with its storytelling (at least based on the trailer) and should feel right at home with the MGS fans. It's being developed by Platinum Games (this is old news, I know), which is kind of perfect match. They pin the release on early 2013, so there's still some ways to go. Also, Mega64 is back for another Konami thing, nothing to say about that really. You should probably watch that part yourself.

Lastly, some Castlevania.
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 CG trailer looks pretty boss, but doesn't really reveal anything about the game. If you haven't played LoS and its DLC yet, spoilers ahead, you have been warned. Gabriel is tearing shit up as the "new Dracula", takes a drink from a soldier, turns into a smoke bat and takes on some kind of big-ass golem, and then is faced with some white haired swordsman whose face we don't see. The game is probably more of that style of gameplay they had in LoS. Though, assuming Gabriel is now the bad guy, and the white haired dude is the protagonist, sword play instead of whip play. So Devil May Cry instead of God of War. tongue
And then there's also a small teaser for a 3DS Castlevania game, which shows even less than the LoS2 trailer.

And that was that. You know, briefly thinking back to last year, they had a Contra teaser at the end of that. I wonder if anything came out of it. Maybe the Hard Corps: Uprising was that game. Hard to say. Anyways, I'm definitely excited to see more of LoS2 at least, if nothing else.

Posted in Gaming by Kilu Member on June 01st 2012 at 1:22pm 2 Comments

You should check out this great video and interview series on the music of Mass Effect

Daniel Bloodworth put together this great video and text interview series over at GameTrailers about the music of Mass Effect series. Anyone with some interest towards game music should definitely check it out. It has bits and bobs from almost all of the composers that have been involved with the series so far.

It might also contain some slight spoilers for the series, obviously, but I don't think they delve too deep into any specific moment in any of the games that you should be worried. Assuming you are worried about spoilers to begin with. Maybe that's just me in my very special little world.

And you know what's maybe the best part about the series? We now know that Uncharted Worlds is also Jack Wall's favorite piece from all the music in Mass Effect series. I feel closer to him already. It's almost like we are best friends now.

Posted in Gaming by Kilu Member on April 21st 2012 at 7:12pm 0 Comments

Online Gaming: New World of Awesome or New World of Douchebaggery?

Online gaming has grown a lot since... well... since the concept even started. It has grown from just plain game sites to first-person shooters. In the beginning, it was friendly to the point where we say hello to each other. Now it grows to the point from saying hello, where you get a "F*** off."

It's hard finding gaming communities, clans, or guilds that are decent with respect and maturity. We play online games to pretend what we want to be while having fun. So what makes a game good? Not just the gameplay... but the community too.

So what happens when a community is terrible? There are less active players, because who wants to come online and be insulted everytime? No one does. Whether it is in text chat or voice chat, you're either gonna get harassed or talked nicely to. It is almost like a 50/50 chance with new people.
Continue reading »

Posted in Other by Marona Member on April 12th 2012 at 7:02pm 0 Comments

Radio Bug Fixes, Feedback?

Glad to see some of you have tried out our new radio solution and are enjoying it, or so I hope! We would love to hear from you. Provide some feedback, offer suggestions on new songs to add to our database, give us ideas for new radio skins! Complain about how your favourite songs are not yet on the list! Any feedback is welcomed. Just drop on over to the radio topic on the forums to leave your mark.

Fixed a few bugs in the radio code. Now that it has had some public air-time, I noticed a pattern forming on the songs it was selecting to play. I've made some changes to how our playlist generator works, and it should be a much more random selection now. Hopefully you'll hear a greater variety of songs smile Also added some statistics gathering so I can track the most requested songs, and songs that get played most often, just for curiosity.

Posted in Site News by Locke Member on April 04th 2012 at 12:43am 0 Comments

Gamers

What delves us into the depths of videogaming?

What makes us attach to video games?

What makes us who we are from video games?

All that aside, video games do play a role in society. As a child or a person not into technical stuff, when you get in video gaming, it is like a whole new world opened. Either playing as some plumber who likes to eat mushrooms, or an elf clad in green bringing peace to the kingdom, or unraveling mysteries of crystals, or becoming a boy in a baseball cap that wields a bat to save the world.

The options? Endless. The type of games? Endless. The Endings? Well...endless...

Continue reading »

Posted in Other by Marona Member on March 30th 2012 at 4:32pm 0 Comments

Open For Business: Game Music Radio and RPGN Forums

You heard it right, we're back in business. Well, sort of. The site needs some major overhauling but I am happy to announce that our forums are once again open for service (with some fresh paint, new arcade games and tweaks!) as well as our brand new game music radio solution! Both are available for you to check out right now! Go listen to some tunes, play some games in our forum arcade, and leave a message telling us how you're doing. Join in the discussions! We welcome anyone new and old. Any feedback, and suggestions are always welcomed as well. I hope you will enjoy this first step in bringing the RPGamers Network back on the map.

RPGN Game Music Radio - The RPGN Forums and Arcade

Posted in Site News by Locke Member on March 29th 2012 at 8:34pm 1 Comment

Forums and Radio Will Re-Launch Together

Just wanted to give a quick update on our progress towards the return of the forums and radio. I would like to have everything up and running before the end of March, but no promises! Still doing some finishing touches. We have been busy adding lots of music to the radio database, making up skins for the radio player, tweaking new forum addons, and adding games to the forum arcade. Fingers crossed everything doesn't explode by the time I am done messing with it!

Lots is going on, but there isn't much to see for a little while longer. I will send our an email to anyone who was an active member of our forums previously when things do come online, so keep an eye on your inbox if that includes you!

Posted in Site News by Locke Member on March 21st 2012 at 1:55pm 0 Comments

Game Music Radio Revival

In the spirit of trying to bring some life to our website, I have been working on a new solution for our game music radio. I spent some time creating custom software which will allow you to enjoy game music tunes via any web browser that has a flash player!

Users will also be able to make requests from our music selection and check out a log of recently played songs. There is also functions that will ensure that you don't hear the same songs too often, currently set to remember the last 50 songs played to prevent repeats. The new radio toys are not publicly available right now but if you drop by our chatroom you can help test it out. smile

Posted in Site News by Locke Member on March 09th 2012 at 2:04pm 0 Comments