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The Weekly Wrap – Sony’s shuffle, violent games law fails

Saturday, 2 July 2011 13:58 GMT By Nathan Grayson

Keeping with the spirit of the week, VG247′s going free-to-play. We’re selling Pat’s beard via microtransactions. News, however, is free. Catch it all after the break.

Hirai becomes SCEI chairman, House takes over as president

What happened: Sony shouted “change places,” and execs scattered every which way. Or maybe everyone fought to the death using old prototype PS3 banana controllers. We’re not really sure how it works over there. Regardless, former SCEE head Andrew House took the reins to SCE’s entire international operation, and Kaz Hirai dove for the comfy beanbag marked “chairman.” Ken Kutargai, meanwhile, came up short and stormed out, mumbling “Man, who needs those guys anyway? My perfectly rendered ducks are the only ones who understand me.”

What it means: According to the Internet, hackers took a boot to Sony’s precious hideaway, and now – like a bunch of ants – execs are dashing around to pick up the pieces. Problem is, Sony’s not a purely reactive ant hill; it’s carefully structured company. As such, our friendly neighborhood Rob Fahey put to rest any notion of post-apocalyPSN shenanigans. The short version? Sony’s clearing out its old guard of engineers-turned-execs in favor of silver-tongued masters of one almighty language: business. After the bleeding-edge hotrod that is the PS3 stalled at the starting line, it’s not at all surprising.

Certainly, the prospect of savvy, sweet-talking businessmen taking over where – at least, stereotypically speaking – honest, hard-working console-makers once ruled doesn’t spark the nicest gut reaction. On the other hand, the PS3 – to this day – is riddled with user-unfriendly annoyances (Installs! Firmware updates! The slow erosion of your ability to love!), so we’re looking forward to a focus on something a bit less obtuse.

SCOTUS rules against violent California games law

What happened: If you’re reading this website, you probably don’t think that videogames are Satan’s latest attempt at tempting your children to become awful delinquents who watch PG-rated films and sneak out after 7:36 PM. But some people do, and one of them once played a robot from the future whose defining personality trait was murder. The world is a strange place. Anyway, the whole Katamari of clashing ideals and agendas rolled into the Supreme Court, which finally shot the darn bill down. For now, anyway.

What it means: If this bill had passed, it’d have set the gaming industry back so many years that it’d probably have been devoured by a dinosaur. In essence, it would have allowed certain games to be equated with the likes of pornography, which – for obvious reasons – wouldn’t fly at the majority of US retailers. And if, say, Wal-Mart’s not going to give your game the time of day, then you may as well put the thing out of its misery long before its abysmal sales become the source of yours. No, M-rated games wouldn’t have been outlawed, but money talks, and this bill would have given it a comically oversized megaphone. In short, thank goodness for the First Amendment.

Better still, protection under the First Amendment should – barring some Phoenix Wright-worthy loophole – prove powerful enough to keep the gaming industry safe from further attempts at government “regulation.” After all, videogames now occupy the same hallowed legal halls as books, movies, and television. Singling them out for “objectionable content,” then, is to stir the hornet’s nest and pick a fight with everybody. Granted, where there’s a will, there’s a way. For now, though, folks like senator Leland Yee have no choice but to harmlessly walk away grumbling about “rights of parents” and limiting their ability to actually, you know, parent in the same sentence.

Report – EB Games Australia to pull Resi Evil: Mercenaries over save-game debacle

What happened: Capcom dropped a Raccoon City sized bomb when it confirmed that Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D lacked the ability to delete save files. In response, retailers like EB Games Australia refused to let the game infest their shelves altogether. Meanwhile, pissed-off gamers – somewhat fittingly – pissed all over the game, turning its Amazon review section into an ugly mess. Capcom then did an awful clean-up job with an explanation that attempted the “woooo, technology is confusing and hard” angle on a crowd of tech-savvy Internet geeks.

What it means: Is Capcom declaring war on the second-hand game sales market? The Internet seems to think so, but there’s another side to the story that warrants consideration: The Mercenaries 3D is kind of a half-assed product. It’s a bite-sized minigame appetizer for Resident Evil: Revelations’ main course, and boy does it show. It’s entirely possible that – in the process of pushing this thing out the door – Capcom simply didn’t care enough to include a crucial feature. The game’s absurdly barebones in every other way; what’s to say the same quick-and-dirty philosophy didn’t rear its ugly head here?

Regardless, retailers completely flipped, which just goes to show how utterly reliant on second-hand sales that market can be. After all, Resident Evil: The Mercenaries 3D isn’t even a particularly significant title. Put simply, we don’t imagine Modern Warfare 3′s waking up and frantically hugging each of its money bags after dreaming of this game. But that didn’t stop EB Games, GameStop, and HMV from treating it like a ticking time bomb seconds away from exploding on their shelves.

Lulzsec announces retirement, leaks final details

What happened: That email you recently received stating that your credit card info, address, and beloved pet cat had all been released onto the Internet’s back alleys by a band of power-mad hackers? Yeah, you can thank these guys for that. LulzSec spent 50 days as the gaming industry’s new boogieman. Then the shadowy organization abruptly descended, well, back into the shadows. More shadows than it previously had, though – just to be clear. By our calculations, it could very well have doubled its shadow count.

What it means: Well, evergreen online force-to-be-reckoned-with Anonymous claimed to be picking up where LulzSec left off, but so far, the so-called “Anti-Sec” movement has yet to ripple back into the gaming world. For now, then, it’s back to business as usual after hackers ruled the headlines for months on end. We highly doubt, however, that this is over. It may not be LulzSec or Anonymous, but the gaming industry’s proven itself an easy target, and 15 seconds in the spotlight – ill-gotten or not – are hard to resist. Hopefully, though, LulzSec’s tear was enough of a kick in the pants to ensure that the gaming industry doesn’t get caught with its guard down again – or at least, not to this degree. On that front, only time will tell.

Bungie Aerospace revealed as small developer initiative

What happened: After a long period of coy mystery mongering, Bungie finally took the wraps off its Aerospace program. In a nutshell, it gives awesome indie games a chance to shine – instead of being crowded out by social and mobile titles with marketing bucks to spare.

What it means: This is all kinds of interesting, but gamers pretty much wrote it off as “Not Master Chief on a guitar-powered rocket-cycle. Next!” For one, it’s a major developer nearly assuming a publishing role for smaller developers, which – taking Activision into account – creates some sort of weird Russian matryoshka doll scenario. For another, this seems like a backdoor entrance into the mobile and social space for a triple-A dev like Bungie, whose resources are currently focused full-steam-ahead on a larger game. Meanwhile, many major developers are still sleeping on both spaces despite their obvious enormity, so taking initiative by helping out smaller, quicker teams will put Bungie on the map and miles ahead of the competition.

Also of note: hardcore gamers’ cynicism toward mobile and social gaming is pretty much notorious at this point, but a few nudges from revered sources like Bungie might change that. And really, most “gamer’s games” that light up App Store sales charts do so on brand power alone (or, in Gameloft’s case, shameless theft). Bungie’s program, on the other hand, promotes a more quality focused scene – at least, assuming it can draw an audience. Fingers crossed, anyway.

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2 Comments

  1. Gama_888

    Would love to see un-deletable saves on MW3, See if the retailers would still have the balls to do that?

    #1 4 years ago
  2. Phoenixblight

    Not possible with a disc.

    #2 4 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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  • GTA 5 Online Heists guide: adversary modes, daily objectives, free roam challenges and more

    Heists aren’t the only addition in GTA Online’s latest DLC – there’s a lot of content that can earn you big RP and cash payouts. GTA 5 Online Heists guide: adversary modes, daily objectives, free roam challenges While heists are the talking point and big payoff after more than a year of waiting, there’s a […]

  • Battlefield Hardline: what’s the best Police sniper rifle?

    What’s the best bolt-action, Police sniper rifle for the Professional class in Battlefield Hardline? Let us help you answer that question. As you’re probably aware, Battlefield Hardline weapons are class specific and faction specific. This makes deciding on a good weapon and loadout much harder than it was in Battlefield 4. Which is where Westie […]

  • Evolve 1.3 patch nerfs Wraith, adjusts Kraken

    Evolve is receiving a new patch that aims to put an end to the Wraith’s dominance. Evolve developer Turtle Rock outlined a few of the changes coming in patch 1.3. The patch brings balance changes to the monsters – mainly the Wraith – as well as other various changes to Hunters’ tools based on player […]

  • Bloodborne: watch the opening 40 minutes

    The opening minutes of Bloodborne really do set the stage for what’s to come. They’ll also help you decide if this game is for you. Arekkz Gaming has captured the first 40 minutes of Bloodborne. Complete with the opening cutscene, and the first few obstacles you’ll face. The video is commentary free, so wear headphones […]

  • YouTube will relaunch livestreaming service with focus on eSports and gaming – report

    According to industry sources, Google is preparing to relaunch YouTube’s livestreaming service with a focus on eSports and gaming. According to anonymous sources speaking to TheDailyDot, Google is planning to bring back YouTube’s livestreaming service. The company is said to have started recruiting around 50 engineers with experience in the field, “a pretty big statement […]

  • I think I’m too old for Final Fantasy 15

    Final Fantasy 15 was nine years in the making – and counting. Are we the same people we were in 2006? Final Fantasy 15: Episode Duscae A demo available for PS4 and Xbox One. Offers a couple of hours of gameplay. More if you jump over the borders. Bundled with Final Fantasy 15 Type-0 and […]

  • New multiplayer mode for Splatoon announced

    Nintendo has sent over three screenshots for Splatoon along with information on the Wii U another of the title’s multiplayer modes. Called Ranked Battle, it keeps track of each player’s online ranking. Splat Zones is one of the additional ways to play online in this mode. It differs from Turf War, which is the main […]

  • 2015 WoW Arena World Championship has a $250,000 prize pool

    Blizzard has announced the WoW Arena World Championship will culminate at BlizzCon 2015. World of Warcraft 3v3 Arena teams from around the globe will compete for spot at the 2015 WoW Arena World Championship and for a share in the $250,000 prize pool. Online qualifiers will be held for North America, Southeast Asia, Australia, New […]

  • The Crew two-hour demo now available in US, tomorrow in the UK

    Ubisoft has announced a free trial of its driving MMO The Crew will be available tomorrow, March 25 in the UK. It’s live today in North America. For current players, the Vintage Car Pack and Vintage Live Update, including a new PvP mode, are now available. The Vintage Car Pack included the Chevrolet Corvette C2 […]

  • Minecraft Mass Effect Mash-Up and Pattern Texture Pack out from today

    A Mass Effect Mash-up pack and the Pattern Texture Pack will release on PlayStation 3, PS4 and Vita today in North America and tomorrow in Europe. The Pattern Texture Pack is also available for Xbox consoles today. The Mass Effect Mash-Up pack contains the Mars Facility from Mass Effect 3 plus textures and craftable items […]

  • The Talos Principle expansion pack Road to Gehenna announced

    An expansion for The Talos Principle has been announced titled Road to Gehenna. The expansion follows the narrative of Uriel, Elohim’s messenger, as he explores a “strange, hidden part of the simulation” on a mission of “mercy and redemption.” Uriel is attempting to free the souls of the damned “at all costs.” Road to Gehenna […]

  • Twitch Plays Pokemon finally catches ‘em all – even the rare Mewtwo

    Twitch Plays Pokemon players have captured all 151 original Pokemon which were included in a modified version of Pokemon Red, and this includes the rare Mewtwo. It took 39 days for Twitch players to catch ‘em all. Have a look at the impressive feat for yourself below. Thanks, Polygon.

  • GameStop will have limited units of Majora’s Mask New 3DS XL back in stock

    Those who missed out on the Limited Edition Majora’s Mask New 3DS XL will have another opportunity to purchase it outside of eBay. Tomorrow only, GameStop stores in the United States will have four units in stock, according to and internal memo sent to Kotaku. This is every store in the country, and again, only […]

  • Second phase of Fortnite closed Alpha launches today

    Fortnite’s second closed Alpha test will go live this afternoon, according to the official website. Those currently participating will have until April 14 to test the online aspects for 12 hours per day (noon -12am EDT). All progress from the previous Alpha test will be wiped, and other changes are listed in the patch notes. […]

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition: Jaws of Hakkon out now on PC, Xbox One

    As promised yesterday, the single-player DLC for Dragon Age: Inquisition, Jaws of Hakkon, is now available on PC and Xbox One. It will run you or £11.99 or your regional equivalent. The new content expands the land of Thedas with mountainous regions and forests, and it is full of “vicious enemies.” Players will also be […]

  • Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare trailer shows Ascendance gameplay

    Activision has released a new gamepay trailer for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare to support the Ascendance DLC which releases next week. Ascendance, will release first on Xbox consoles March 31 and includes the next chapter of the Exo Zombies Saga, Infected, along with four new multiplayer maps: Perplex, Site 244, Climate and Chop Shop. […]

  • Batman: Arkham Knight will be a digital only release on PC – report

    It appears Batman: Arkham Knight will not see a physical release on PC, according to ShopTo. The retailer was told by its buyer the Rocksteady game will only be released on PC in digital form. ShopTo is currently double checking the information. If accurate, it is unknown if this will be case in North America […]

  • Bloodborne patch focusing on load times, performance optimizations in the works

    A patch for Bloodborne which will address load times is in the works, Sony has said The load times were one of the issues noted in Digital Foundry’s report on the From Software title. Sony told Eurogamer the patch would also explore other issues as well. “The development team is currently exploring another patch for […]

  • Gearbox would “love” to have entire Borderlands collection on current-gen

    An Xbox One and PlayStation 4 version of the original Borderlands game is something Gearbox Software is interested in, according to studio boss Randy Pitchford. Speaking in the latest Major Nelson podcast, Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford said should Borderlands: The Handsome Collection prove successful, 2K Games might consider a current-gen version. “The fact that The […]

  • Wolfenstein: The Old Blood artwork shows the catacombs, dock, more

    Over the weekend we posted Wolfenstein: The Old Blood artwork along with news of a retail release in Europe. Today, we have better quality images of said artwork to share with you. Enjoy. The standalone prequel will be released digitally on May 5 on PC, PS4 and Xbox One in North America, and digitally on […]

  • Slender: The Arrival terrorizes PS4 and Xbox One this week

    In case you forgot, what with Bloodborne out today and other high profile releases of late, Slender: The Arrival is out today on PlayStation 4 in North America. The scary game will arrive on Xbox One tomorrow, March 25, and in Europe on PS4. Slender: The Arrival is an expansion on the original Slender game […]

  • World of Warcraft’s WoW Token rollout slated after launch of patch 6.1.2

    Blizzard has announced it will start rollout its WoW Token option in the weeks following the launch of patch 6.1.2 on March 24. WoW Token allows players to exchange in-game gold for game time and vice versa. Blizzard will release WoW Token first in realms serving North America, Oceania, and Latin America and will expand […]

  • The Evil Within: The Consequence dated for April, teaser video released

    Part 2 of Juli Kidman’s adventure in The Evil Within will arrive next month with the release of The Consequence. Above is a brief teaser showing some of the “madness” Kidman will encounter. The Consequence will arrive on Tuesday, April 21 on PC, PlayStation 3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. European PlayStation players will […]

  • Bloodborne sometimes “struggles to run at a smooth frame-rate” per performance analysis

    Bloodborne has been analyzed by Digital Foundry and according to the report, even with a 30fps cap the game sometimes “struggles to run at a smooth frame-rate.” The game’s day-one 2.69GB update 1.01 is “essential” as it contains improvements to game performance and stability and the frame-rate tests run by Digital Foundry were in single-player […]

  • Borderlands: The Handsome Collection reviews round-up

    Borderlands: The Handsome Collection reviews are out in the wild so we decided to catch a few of them for you. Borderlands: The Handsome Collection is out today on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. The collection packages Borderlands 2 and Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel along with each game’s DLC content on one disc. Better graphics and […]

  • Evolve, Forza Horizon 2, WWE 2K15 are this week’s Deals with Gold

    Evolve, Forza 2 Horizon and WWE 2K15 are just some of the games which are part of this week’s Xbox Deals with Gold. You can also pick up the Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Pro Edition for 20% off as well as the standard edition for 33% off. For the Xbox 360 crowd, there’s also […]

  • Xbox 360 2015 Spring Value bundles now available starting at $250

    Microsoft is offering a discount on three Xbox 360 bundles with prices starting at $250. The Xbox 360 2015 Spring Value bundles feature various content such as a Kinect, 500GB console bundle and one month of Xbox Live Gold. Xbox 360 500GB Spring Value Bundle: comes with Plants vs. Zombies Garden Warfare download and Fable […]