Since its release late last year, HALO 4 sold millions of copies worldwide and was critically acclaimed by all of gaming and mainstream media. The stellar singleplayer campaign focused on a deeper Master Chief and his relationship with Cortana along with the introduction of a new threat, while multiplayer brought back many familiar modes that HALO fans loved in War Games and introduced new modes like the episodic Spartan Ops.
I recently had a short chat with 343 industries’ Kevin Franklin, the lead designer for HALO 4 about its impact in the industry, Master Chief’s background, and the HALO Community. Check out the full interview after the break. Read the rest of this entry
We’ve been hearing about rumors/bits and pieces on it the last few days, but Microsoft (at their E3 press briefing earlier today) finally detailed their upcoming cross-platform media sharing solution called Xbox Smart Glass.
It’s an important step that Microsoft is willing to gamble on to ensure that the Xbox 360 becomes the multimedia entertainment system hub.
Learn more about the Xbox Smart Glass after the break. Read the rest of this entry
Ubisoft Toronto announced Splinter Cell: Blacklist at the Micrsoft E3 briefing earlier today. It’s a melding of Splinter Cell game design from Chaos Theory, Double Agent, and Conviction. In a way, it’s a return to the classic Splinter Cell gameplay but with brand-new features that allow players to really feel like they’re the ultimate spy: Sam Fisher.
Learn more about the new features and story in Splinter Cell: Blacklist after the break. Read the rest of this entry
Dear Microsoft Masters who control my console,
After years of loyal service (and paying my Gold Membership fees) I have a complaint. It’s not about the increasingly annoying user interfaces you’ve saddled us with, the somewhat middling sales and specials, or the frustrating Kinect controls (Hey, there’s something that’s not better with Kinect!). It’s something else.
I hate the ads.
Not the ones about games or what’s coming soon or what’s new. I’m talking about the terrible third-party ads (mostly movie trailers) that play music when you accidentally scroll across one. Read the rest of this entry
*Update Nov. 11, 2012* Well, I’m happy to say that 343 Industries has indeed created one of the best HALO games since Reach. HALO 4 is well made, perfectly paced, and has some of the best graphics seen on the Xbox 360 this year.
Microsoft and 343 Industries finally announced that Halo 4 will indeed be released November 6th this year. Those who thought they had finished Master Chief’s fight in HALO 3 can breathe a sigh of relief as the Chief will be the protagonist of the new game.
The first HALO trilogy ended with Master Chief going into cryogenic sleep after numerous battles against the Covenant and the Flood. Master Chief is awakened from his cryo-sleep by Cortana after their ship is attacked by a mysterious spaceship, thus begins the new HALO trilogy.
It all sounds mighty exciting except for the fact that Bungie Studios (the developer who made the first three games) is not developing the game. HALO 4 will be developed exclusively by Microsoft’s own 343 Industries (343i). You see, after they finished working on HALO 3, Bungie separated from Microsoft and became an independent company. (Then later signed a ten-year publishing agreement with Activision/Blizzard, but that’s another story.)
The question on a lot of gamers minds is “can 343 Industries develop a HALO game as well Bungie?” Read the rest of this entry
Which is the better gaming machine, the PlayStation 3 or the Xbox 360?
Ah it is the question that starts debates, fights, and even wars (of the flaming kind). It is a question that has been much discussed all over the web for the last six years. Everytime a new blockbuster exclusive game comes out for one system, the fans and followers of the other system either: a) Dismisses it as crap, b) Denies it’s existence, or c) Write negative reviews on public review sites.
It’s a question that I myself have a hard time answering. I have both systems, like both systems, and play the hell out of them. Sometimes I would have stretches of time where I would use one system more over the other. I have a massive collection of games for both systems too. It’s too damn hard to choose which one is better.
After watching an old episode of Friends. You know, the one where Ross creates a list of Rachel and Julie’s pros and cons, I had an idea. I’ll do that same thing for both systems. See which one outdoes the other. (Without having to endure Rachel’s wrath Thank God!)
Let’s start the lists shall we?
On October 12 at 3 am (PDT) indie game dev studio Twisted Pixel was welcomed into the Microsoft family after six years of developing independent games for Microsoft platforms.
“Twisted Pixel has an incredible track record of innovative, critically acclaimed, and most importantly, fun, games,” said Phil Spencer, corporate vice president, Microsoft Studios. “Microsoft Studios is home to cutting-edge entertainment experiences, and the incredible creativity of the Twisted Pixel team will help drive further innovation around Kinect and Xbox LIVE.”
Translation: “Twisted Pixel fans will have more games to look forward to, but now we own their asses.”
Considering that every game produced by Twisted Pixel has been for XBLA or the Kinect, future products by the studio aren’t likely to change. I just hope Microsoft follows through on their promise and allows Twisted Pixel to continue injecting their signature sense of humour into new titles.
So here’s something I missed out on when it was first announced. Xbox Rewards is now in Canada(and has been since July!). So now us northerner gamers can earn Microsoft points for doing things we already do!
Signing up is easy, free, and only takes 36 hours to link to your account. Why 36 hours? Damned if I know, that’s a question for your online Microsoft Customer Experience Rep.
Points are rewarded for completing surveys, entering contests, and purchasing Xbox Live Gold and select games. For every 100 points accrued, the amount will be deposited into your account on the 15th of the following month. Microsoft also has rewards such as draws and bonus offers for members who’ve signed up.
Sounds like a sweet deal? The program’s only around until July 2012. Get on those freebies fast!
Last week we posted a list of our Top 5 Favourites on Xbox Live Arcade, highlighting Shadow Complex, Dead Rising 2: Case West/Case Zero, X-Men Arcade, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, and Limbo.
Find out what games are included in our more awesome list after the break. Read the rest of this entry
Virtual Air Guitar Company Interview – Kung Fu: High Impact for the Microsoft Kinect
Ignintion Games announced earlier this week that they have partnered with Virtual Air Guitar Company (the developer of PSN Game Kung-Fu Live) to bring Kung-Fu: High Impact to Microsoft’s Kinect on the Xbox 360 this November.
The company’s first game, Kung Fu Live was designed from the ground up for the Playstation Eye. So of course, switching from Playstation Eye to the Kinect is always an interesting design decision. I had some questions to ask the guys at Virtual Air Guitar Company about their changes and about their upcoming product. Check out the interview after the break. Read the rest of this entry