Upcoming Alan Wake DLC to Spruce Up Facial Animation

alanwakeI was originally going to slap this thing with a “Today’s WTF” prefix, but with E3 around the corner, those things are going to be coming fast and furious. Still, this little bit of news is a head-scratcher for sure. Alan Wake, the upcoming X-Box 360 exclusive by Remedy Studios is catching a bit of flack for the game’s facial animations which apparently don’t match up with the tone of voice the character is using. For such a story driven tale, you can bet this has caused some consternation amongst the game’s reviewers.

One would expect such a fix, if it were to come at all, to be included in a patch, not through DLC. Remedy is doing the exact opposite, however, bundling in the change with the supernatural thriller’s upcoming downloadable content. No word on whether or not the additional gameplay will be free of charge or not, but if it includes alterations to the game’s code, it’s a safe bet that there will be some Microsoft Points involved.

What do you guys think about this? Fair or foul on Remedy’s part? For a game that’s been in development for so long, should we have to pay for something that should be there in the first place?

Source: VG247

New Dragon Age DLC Lets You Command Darkspawn

Darkspawn ChroniclesLast year, Dragon Age Origins stood out to me as one of the better RPG experiences I’ve had this gen. Even though there were parts of it that frustrated me, overall it was a really solid game that created a rich world with a vibrant history. It was everything I want from a fantasy game. Of course, now that I’ve played Mass Effect 2, I know that there are even better things to come, but the game still deserves its due.

So imagine my delight when I saw that even more DLC is coming to the Bioware RPG in the form of something we haven’t quite seen before. The new DLC, Darkspawn Chronicles, let’s you play as the Darkspawn vanguard attacking Denerim at the end of the game proper. It lets you explore an alternate history, one where the Grey Warden is killed and you get to see (and play) what happens when the bad guys win.

I think that has to be some of the more unique DLC that I’ve heard of so far. While I haven’t played Awakening yet, this seems like something that is also worthy of a purchase, especially at only 5 big ones. So what do you guys think of this idea? Should more games dabble in alternate history and endings via DLC?

Source- Bioware

Pay For Play: A Look At The Big 3’s Digital Pay Systems

As the video game industry moves more and more towards complete digital distribution, I thought it would be a good idea to see where things stand right now in terms of how we buy our games and DLC. Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony all have platforms for digital distribution and each has strengths and weaknesses, but today I plan on talking about what I personally like and dislike with each of them, specifically, the manner in which we fork over our hard-earned cash monies.

First, the best: Sony’s PSN network is just the smoothest interface, in my opinion. No silly point systems, just straight up money. You can add a few different games to your cart and buy them all together or one at a time and they will download in the background. The only problem I have with this is that you always have to add at least $5.00 to your “wallet”, which sucks when you buy something that is only $1.99 because then you have money that you have spent in real life and is now just waiting to be spent digitally. A minor quibble, but one that can be annoying.

Microsoft comes in a close second. Xbox Live Marketplace has many of the same features that makes PSN so strong and in fact, there is only one thing that really holds it back: that mystical point system. See, whenever you go to purchase something, you need points. So you have to add points, but thankfully, your credit card is saved, so you don’t have to enter it in every time.
Continue reading Pay For Play: A Look At The Big 3’s Digital Pay Systems

Hydro Thunder Trailer Fills Me With Joy

I think that developers have finally cracked the magic code that protects the part of my brain that controls impulse buying: HD-remakes of games that I loved in my youth. First Sonic the Hedgehog gets his own downloadable nostalgia-inducing title, and now my favorite boat-racing game, Hydro Thunder, is getting an X-Box Live Arcade release. The game is being rebuilt to take advantage of current generation technologies, and the developers are adding all sorts of goodies like wave physics and all that jazz. Have a look at the trailer:

I remember sinking hours into the arcade version of this game, and even more into the Nintendo 64 version. There might be too many good Arcade titles coming out this year, but I’m going to make an effort to put this one on the list! Is anyone else going to pick it up?

Review: Resident Evil 5 DLC: Lost In Nightmares

It is no great secret that we here at GamerSushi are a bit in love with last year’s Resident Evil 5, even to the chagrin of some in our community. We voted the game as one of our tops of 2009 and have sung its praises on many occasions. And while no, we don’t love Resident Evil 5 enough to go out and marry it, we do feel a great desire to take it behind a middle school and get it pregnant. You heard me right.

So it should come as no great surprise or shock that a few of us were hungrily clamoring for the first bit of DLC that Capcom sent hurling our way. Lost in Nightmares hit the Webs just last week, ready for gamers all around to savor its tasty flavors. This is the first of a few downloadable co-op chapters that will all eventually be packaged in the RE5 Gold Edition hitting sometime in the near future.

The burning question, though: how is Lost in Nightmares? Let’s find out.
Continue reading Review: Resident Evil 5 DLC: Lost In Nightmares

What Do Bad Company 2 and Mass Effect 2 Have in Common?

bad company 2
If you first answer is “the number two”, then you’re only half correct. The other thing these two sequels have in common is that they’re both playing host to EA’s new online initiative which asserts that all major forthcoming releases will have heavy back-end support and a lot of additional content available post-launch. Just as purchasers of brand new copies of Mass Effect 2 obtained a Cerberus Network Card which gave them access to free day one DLC, customers who buy unused copies of Bad Company 2 will receive a VIP code that will offer up a couple exclusive multiplayer maps. If you buy a used copy then you can still gain access to these promotions, you just have to pay around $15 dollars first.

By 2011, EA expects that all of its games will have an online component and this is a major step in the company’s efforts to combat both piracy and the used game market. By making the bonus content available to paying consumers, it keeps those of us with weaker scruples out of PC matchmaking (at least for a little while), and it also provides additional incentive to drop $60 on a title, a little extra enticement which is beneficial in these trying time.

I for one applaud this movement, but how do you guys feel? Now that DLC and online support is becoming more and more popular, should companies attempt to assert their monopoly? While publishers have a right to protect their games, do you feel that shunning the used game market is the right way to go about it? Let us know how you feel!

Source: The Escapist

Assassin’s Creed II DLC Trailer Stabs Some Dudes

I bring good news for my fellow Assassin’s Creed II fans as it appears that the second bit of downloadable content is going to be dropping tomorrow. Sure, it is on short notice, but I can’t complain about the prospect of playing some more Assassin’s Creed. This is the last of the announced digital extras for AC2, and, while I haven’t tried out the first bit of DLC (Battle for Forli), I’m looking forward to picking both of them up tomorrow and giving them a go. Check out the trailer for the Bonfire of the Vanities DLC:

It’s available on both X-Box LIVE and the PlayStation Network and will be included in the PC release of Assassin’s Creed II in March. Who else is downloading this, and did you play the first DLC? If so, what did you think?

Resident Evil 5 Gold Edition: Jill Valentine Trailer

You all know of my great devotion to Resident Evil 5 as one of the best games of 2009. It’s seriously one of the only titles this generation that has made me want to play it over and over, even after beating it multiple times.

That’s why I’m pumped about the release of RE5 gold edition, with extra chapters that will also be available via DLC. Both the gold edition and DLC chapters come out on March 9th. There’s a new trailer out that kind of rules. Will anybody else pick up either of these?

Dragon Age Awakening Officially Announced

EA and BioWare have gone on record numerous times stating that the eminent Western RPG crafter’s sci-fi and fantasy epics, Dragon Age and Mass Effect 2, are going to receive a lot of post-release content that will give the titles significant longevity. Ergo, Dragon Age has already seen day-one DLC, another piece of content that was set to be released today, and now a full fledged disc-based expansion coming in March.

Last year (it already sounds so far behind, doesn’t it?), product listings from New Zealand hinted at the arrival of a new Dragon Age title, but not something that would be available for download. Dragon Age: Origins: Awakening looks to be to Dragon Age what ODST was to Halo 3 but much, much sooner and a lot less brief in game-play length. The expansion will run about fifteen hours and will allow players to import and edit their character from the main game. The setting of the expansion will be a new nation called Amaranthine and the Warden will face off against a terrible foe known as The Architect. Somehow, I imagine an older gentleman sitting in a room lined with crystal balls, but that’s just me.

So, who’s excited about this? My Dragon Age play-through was very slap dash, and I’ve kind of been feeling guilty about how quickly I burned through it. With Mass Effect 2 coming up soon, I want to get another campaign under my belt before I shift to sci-fi, and the upcoming Awakening expansion has got me interested. What about you guys?

Source: Kotaku

GameStop to Launch Redundant DLC Service Next Year

Let it never be said that GameStop isn’t willing to try something new every now and then to stay fresh and “with it”. Because DLC is becoming hugely popular (Battlefield 1943 is an excellent example), GameStop is planning to launch an in-store DLC service where consumers will buy the content at their local shop and download it once they get home.

Getting DLC with your games from GameStop is not an altogether unfamiliar practice for those who have pre-ordered games and gotten bonuses, but this strikes me as a little strange. You can already buy Microsoft Space Dollars and PSN and Wii point cards in store, so those of us without credit cards can get our DLC at home anyways. So, unless GameStop discontinues the sale of those cards, I don’t see any real way that this will succeed.

Of course, this is all speculation right now, and it will probably end up as yet another selling point that the person behind the counter has to bombard you with before you purchase your game. What do you guys think? Is this destined for failure, or will it hook those gamers afraid of the natural progression of the industry?

Source: 1up

GameCop Vs LameCop Vs PsychoCop

In the past, GameCop vs. LameCop has been a feature where Anthony and I argue about video game issues, playing the role of either the GameCop or the LameCop as we do so. However, with the addition of a new GamerSushi team member, we’ve added another more absurd character to the bunch: Psycho Cop.

If you’re unfamiliar with this feature, we discuss gaming issues and we switch roles each time. The GameCop has your best interests as gamers at heart, while the LameCop is just what he sounds like: kind of a lamewad. Meanwhile, PsychoCop is a crazed, rabid forum troll that rants like a complete lunatic.

In this week’s edition, we not-so-calmly debate Day 1 DLC and Modern Warfare 2’s erasure of dedicated servers.

Continue reading GameCop Vs LameCop Vs PsychoCop

GamerSushi Asks: Changing the Ending?

fallout3There might be some slight spoilers here regarding Fallout 3, but I will do my best to avoid them. I haven’t finished the game, so I can’t spoil it too much anyway, I can only talk about what I know.

It seems that the new Fallout 3 DLC, “Broken Steel” which will hit next month on the PC and 360, actually removes the ending of the game itself. Beyond that, it even changes a few key events leading up to the finale, in order to make things more to people’s liking after lots of complaining about the original ending.

Not only does this raise the level cap and allow people to explore the world after the game is finished, it also raises some interesting questions.
Continue reading GamerSushi Asks: Changing the Ending?

Left 4 Dead Survival Pack Hits Today!

l4dThe new DLC for Left 4 Dead releases today, bringing with it some new maps for versus play as well as a new mode, “Survival”. The more I read about Survival, the cooler it sounds. Basically, it takes the big crescendo moments from the campaigns (like the hospital elevator or the boat house) and stretches them out indefinitely, gradually adding more and more zombie spawns as you mow them down with limited supplies. This could be awesome.

The Survival Pack hit the 360 late last night, and should be out for the PC version later in the day. The best part of all of this is that it’s free, thanks to the fine dudes at Valve. I haven’t played Left 4 Dead in a month or so, but I just might play it like a maniac again thanks to this.

Who else is excited?