Infinity Ward Gets Help With Modern Warfare 3

call of duty modern warfare 3

We all know two things are certain every year: A Call of Duty game will come out in November and it will be the biggest game of the year. Well, you can rest easy because it looks like all is right with the world, as the L.A. Times is reporting that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 will be released this November, as expected. Please be aware this isn’t confirmed by Activision yet.

What’s interesting about this is that the article states that Sledgehammer is working closely with Infinity Ward to get the title ready and Raven Software is helping out with the online multiplayer aspect. If true, this would destroy all the predictions that were made about Sledgehammer and Raven working on a separate Call of Duty title. I am rather glad to hear this, actually. I want Modern Warfare 3 before any other kind of Call of Duty series starts up.

What do you think? Would Activision go to such lengths to protect their cash cow? I think so. Are you excited about this or has the backlash still tainted you? Speak!

Source: L.A. Times

Rumor: Halo: Combat Evolved Remake in 2011?

halo combat evolved remakeDespite the fact that Microsoft has said that they’re not looking at HD remakes, it’s hard to deny the fact that a Halo: Combat Evolved re-release with updated graphics would move a crazy amount of copies.

According to CVG, who pulled the information from UK magazine Games Master, 343 Industries is hard at work on a revival of Halo: Combat Evolved using the Halo: Reach engine. According to “industry chatter” cited by the magazine, the game would hit on Halo: CE’s tenth anniversary in November of 2011 with a true sequel to Halo 3 following up in 2012.

While this is all speculation, CVG points out that this release schedule would fit with 343’s plan to release a new Halo game every year a la Call of Duty or Assassin’s Creed.

Tag this as the most vaguest of rumors for now, faithful readers, because the only actual Microsoft big-wig quoted is UK Xbox manager Stephen McGill who thinks a current-generation Combat Evolved would be a “good idea”.

What do you guys think of this possibility? Will it happen, or is a Halo: CE remake just a pipe dream?

Source – CVG

Rumor: Elder Scrolls V Is a Direct Sequel to Oblivion?

Elder Scrolls 4

Well, we’ve been waiting forever, and it seems that Bethesda’s addiction machine, I mean, Elder Scrolls, is gearing up for another entry into the long running franchise. That’s right, Eurogamer Denmark is reporting that Elder Scrolls V is well into production, and it’s so far along in fact that they’ll be doing voicework for the game over the next few weeks.

While the reporters that supposedly saw the game are sworn to secrecy through blood pacts (also called NDAs), there are a few things we know about the game. Namely, that it’s a direct sequel to Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, rather than a standalone tale set in the same universe. I know this should really excite fans of the last game, and I’m sure the idea of jumping right back into those events is going to encumber people with happiness like so many extra pieces of armor. Maybe I can try and actually finish this one instead of robbing houses for 35 hours.

I probably don’t even have to ask this, but is anyone else excited about this? What do you guys think a direct sequel to Oblivion could entail? Anything in particular you want to see in Elder Scrolls V?

Source – Eurogamer Denmark via Google Translate

Rumor: Diablo 3 Coming to Consoles?

diablo 3 on consoles

The Sundering has begun, people! One of the surest signs of the apocalypse, as foretold in the forbidden tome the Necronomicon, is the debut of a Blizzard title on home consoles. Long has the realm of this developer been the PC world, but according to a recent uncovering by Gamasutra, the winds of change are blowing.

While it’s safe to say that this is firmly in the rumor category, job postings by Blizzard point pretty strongly towards a console version of the upcoming hack-and-slash RPG Diablo 3. Normally these sorts of things are kind of ambiguous, but the phrase “prior experience in console game development” with an “extensive knowledge of Diablo” is kind of specific. Blizzard has never confirmed nor denied the possibility of Diablo 3 showing up on the Xbox 360 or the PS3, so keep that in mind when you pick up the torches and pitch forks on your way to California.

To editorialize a bit here, I’m sure that the fervent PC-playing masses are going to blow this thing out of proportion and claim that Diablo 3 will be “dumbed down” for the console players, but the more people who get to play Diablo, the better. I played the junk out of Diablo 2, and in this day and age, it’s more economically viable for people to have a console than an up-to-date gaming rig. I’m sure that the PC version of Diablo will be handled with due care by Blizzard. They know which side their bread is buttered on.

What do you guys think? Of all of Blizzard’s franchises, isn’t Diablo 3 the best suited for a console transition? If it came out on the Xbox 360 or PS3, would you get it? Doesn’t Gamasutra sound like a dirty word?

Source – Gamasutra

Rumor: Call of Duty Gets Space Marines?

Space Marines

It seems like everything’s been Call of Duty around these parts lately, no? Considering it’s probably going to end up as the year’s largest release, I guess you can’t really blame us too much. If you don’t believe me, check out the reports that Black Ops moved 5.6 million copies and defeated Modern Warfare 2 in day one sales. Yeah, it surprised me, too.

Anyway, the franchise seems to just build on itself every year, no matter who’s in charge. Eventually though, it stands to reason that at some point, people will get tired of the same formula. There are only so many time periods to exploit, after all. Which is why it’s interesting to hear rumors that Call of Duty’s next entry, developed by Sledgehammer Games, will take place in the future. From Gamasutra:

That unit hasn’t talked specifically about what it’s doing with the franchise. But industry sources say Sledgehammer’s Call of Duty will be set in the future and feature, for lack of a better term, space Marines, a very big step for a franchise that has historically based itself on realism.

Could this be the Call of Duty game that is due out next year in 2011? What about the title that the leftovers of Infinity Ward are still working on? Only time will tell, I guess.

What do you guys think about these rumors? Would Call of Duty: Halo be a good direction for the series to go?

Source – Gamasutra

Rumor: Metal Gear Rising to Strike in 2012?

metal gear rising 2012

Our podcasts are becoming strangely prescient, it seems. Only on our last show did we despair about the early announcement of games versus when they actually come out. While the target of our woe at that time was Gran Turismo 5, it can easily be applied to Konami’s up-coming Metal Gear themed hack and slasher Metal Gear Rising, which is apparently set for a 2012 release.

Metal Gear Rising, announced in the summer of 2009 as a multiplatform title, apparently won’t be making an appearance for a couple of years if Kotaku is to be believed. While they don’t cite a source, they do say that they have been “told” that the game won’t be out until 2012. I’d chalk this up to rumor for now, but as Kotaku did point out, there are usually long waits between the announcement of an MGS game and its actual appearance on store shelves. Metal Gear Solid 4, as the given example, was announced in 2005 and didn’t come out until 2008.

While Metal Gear Rising never had a firm release date, many expected that the game would be out in 2011. However, given the lack of information on the game, this change in date isn’t exactly surprising. What do you guys think of Metal Gear Rising’s delay? Does this affect your perception of the title at all? Should game companies wait to announce games until they have a release date set in stone?

Source: Kotaku

Update: Valve Not Considering Steam Trade-Ins

steam trade insWe generally like to avoid cluttering up the front page with multiple articles on the same story, but I think that this particular story deserves a follow up. A couple of days ago, I published an article in which I quoted Michael Pachter saying that Steam is “supposedly” looking into allowing trade-ins via their digital store. Now that the interview has had sometime to make it’s way to Valve, the quote is coming back to haunt Mr. Pachter.

Valve marketing head Doug Lombardi recently spoke to EuroGamer regarding the alleged trade-in plans, and said that Valve has never met with Michael Pachter, and they have no idea where he got the notion from. Pachter responded in turn, agreeing that he had never met Valve, and that the problematic quote came around because the game journalist posed the question to him awkwardly. This is his new stance on his line from a couple days ago after the jump: Continue reading Update: Valve Not Considering Steam Trade-Ins

Rumor: Bioware Blogger Reveals The Old Republic’s $300 Million Price Tag and Other EA Secrets

The Old Republic

The rumor mill churned out a doozy today, kids. A person claiming to work at Bioware Mythic started a blog, EA Louse, and has decided to air out some dirty laundry, the kind that I’m sure the masters at EA would rather the world not know. Granted, all of this is unconfirmed, but it’s too juicy to just ignore. Some of the tidbits include details about upcoming EA layoffs in November, keeping with the current trend in the industry of letting people go just before the holidays.

In addition, he or she claims that the budget for the upcoming Star Wars MMO, The Old Republic, is a whopping $300 million and that EA is panicking because they realize now that they have a failure on their hands. He goes on to claim that it will be the biggest MMO failure in EA’s history. There is plenty more on there, including some gossip about Warhammer, so head on over if you want to read more about that.

Assuming (dangerous, I know) that this is true, it would spell disaster for EA, as that is a lot of money to throw out the window. Do you see any truth to these claims? Do you think it’s ethical for an employee to reveal company dirt like this? Let’s hear it!

Source: EA Louse

Michael Pachter Believes Valve Will Offer Steam Trade-Ins Soon

Steam trade in service
Michael Pachter, an analyst that tries to gauge future trends in the video game industry, has basically built a career saying crazy things and hoping they come true (kind of like some games journalists, but I digress). While most of what he says can be brushed off as preposterous rumor, he sometimes produces a rare gem, like a diamond in a coal mine.

Take this recent interview he had with NowGamer where he postulated that Valve will begin offering a trade in service on Steam fairly soon. While we all love Steam, apparently there’s some demand to have Valve’s digital store offer the same sort of service provided by GameStop, i.e the ability to trade in titles for credit towards new ones. This is the explanation Pachter gave as to how he thinks it would go down:

“Steam is phenomenal, it’s a great service,” Pachter explained, “Steam gives gamers enough other stuff so that they don’t resent the fact they can’t trade in their games. And you know, name all the Steam games that you’ve purchased that you’ve traded back in to somebody else for credit. Steam’s about to let you do that supposedly, you know like trade and exchange, but they’re going to take a fee from it.”

While the “supposedly” does take this idea pretty firmly into guesswork territory, I think it’s a novel idea that Valve are possibly exploring, if only to further their dominance on PC gaming. What do you guys think? Any truth to Pachter’s statement? What kind of “fee” would Valve take, if any?

Source – NowGamer

Rumor: Bungie Teases MMO as Their Next Game

Bungie MMOI don’t want to start off this article by saying that we’re a bunch of gaming prophets or anything, but sometimes we make frighteningly accurate predictions. I don’t know if any of you recall, but on our E3 podcast, we conjectured that Bungie and Activision might be putting out an MMO since Activision loves recurring payments and Bungie loves making games. Turns out we might not have been too far off the mark.

In a recent keynote speech at GDC Online Austin, Bungie’s Joe Staten, known for writing the Halo games along with the Contact Harvest novel, talked about building the canon around Halo and how that contributed to the game’s success. After he finished giving his speech (in which he admitted that the ending to Halo 2 was a total mess, confirming what we knew all along), he opened up to some Q&A with the audience. One of the questions was related to Bungie’s next project, to which Staten responded with this little snippet:

“Wouldn’t it be great if we could make a world that was always there for you?”, replied Staten. “Wow. That would be great.”

While he doesn’t out and out say that an MMO is indeed Bungie’s next project, his comment does seem to lean in that direction. While his whole discussion on the writing of Halo was a great read, this is probably going to be the sticking point for people going forward.

We’re undoubtedly going to see something concrete from Bungie’s next project soon, so do you guys think they’re going to go the MMO route? Do you think it will be First Person or some other genre? Based on Halo: Reach, I’d love to see some space combat in there as well.

Source: Gamasutra

Rumor: Mysterious Video Points to Modern Warfare 2 Subscription Plan?

On the internet, everything must be taken with a grain of salt, which is why Wikipedia is no longer a valid source for information when writing a paper for school. Simply put, there are too many untrustworthy people who are much, much smarter than the vast majority of us, and they use their talents to disguise erroneous facts as the truth. This video, though, seems to be pretty legitimate to me. Apparently an X-Box LIVE user attempted to connect to a friend’s game, only to be bounced to a Marketplace page that announced that a Membership plan was necessary, but not available yet. Take a look at the video and decide for yourself.

The top of the screen clearly has the beginning of “membership” before it is cut off by the size limitation. What do you guys think? Will Modern Warfare 2 follow a WoW-based route, or is this for something different? Treat this as a rumor for now until we have official word from Activision. It wouldn’t surprise me, though.

Fallout MMO Beta Site Launched

Fallout Online

For many months now, there has been a rumored Fallout MMO in the works, with Interplay and Bethesda caught in a slight legal debacle over the rights to the game. The codename for this game has been Project V13, and while it wasn’t scheduled to go into public beta until sometime in 2012, it seems that things might have changed. A new Fallout Online site has been launched by Interplay, with a flash animation, some artwork and even a form to register for the beta as well as regular e-mail updates. I guess they’ve had their issues worked out, recently?

This is potentially pretty cool news, even though I have yet to finish the game. The Fallout world is a really rich one with plenty of great locales to visit, and tons of room for player exploration. I think it’s exactly the kind of property that lends itself perfectly to an MMO, so the developments here should be fun to see. If any of you are interested, head on over to the site, but just be warned that it’s loading a bit janky right now because it’s servers are no doubt being beaten like a drum.

So what do you guys think of this? Who’s going to sign up?

Source- Blues News

Microsoft: XBox “Kinect”, Plus A New 360 Model

Microsoft KinectEver since last year’s Microsoft press conference at E3 2009, people around the gaming industry have been wondering about what their new motion control system, codenamed Natal, was eventually going to end up being named. We saw a similar thing several years ago, when the Nintendo “Revolution” wound up with the then-strange-but-now-household moniker: “Wii”. Well, news has finally dropped tonight. Natal’s final title will be the Xbox “Kinect”.

While the name certainly isn’t everything, and I see the idea they’re going for, I actually thought Natal was kind of catchy in the same sense that “Wii” was, because it represented something new that we hadn’t seen before. With no controllers, Kinect is certainly going to be an interesting evolution of the motion control platform. By all accounts, this makes Sony’s Move seem like a stroke of genius in comparison.

In addition to that piece of news, there are also reports of the long-rumored “slim” XBox 360 finally making its debut at E3 this week, along with pictures of the new model. Supposedly, the only difference between this new model and the old ones is that the HDD is 250 GB and it also has built-in Wi Fi. To me, this design seems like a step back, especially compared to the PS3 slim, which was such a well done re-design of a system. This rumored model is sharp and angular. If this ends up being real, they might as well call it the XBox 360 Orthanc, after Saruman’s tower in Lord of the Rings.

Anyway, there has also been a short list of Kinect’s launch games, which include a dance game as well as a Wii Sports ripoff. So what do you guys think of all of these developments? Do you like the name Kinect?

Source- Kotaku (Kinect) and Kotaku (New XBox 360 Model)

Today’s WTF: Metal Gear Without David Hayter

snakeThis news could possibly be the death knell of Metal Gear Solid: Rising for me, even though I’ve seen nothing of the game since last E3. According to rumors, the game, subtitled “Tactical Lightning Action”, will be out sometime next year, and no one has phoned David Hayter yet! For those of you who don’t know who this man is, he’s the guy who’s been providing the gravelly-voiced delivery for Solid Snake for the last twelve years. He’s also a Hollywood screen writer with credits for X-Men and X-Men 2 in addition to the Watchmen draft that stodgy Alan Moore gave his approval to.

One might say that Hayter is the linchpin of Metal Gear Solid in North America, so what will a Metal Gear game without Solid Snake be like? Granted, the game is assumed to be about Raiden, but even Metal Gear Solid 2 (which had Raiden as the main protagonist), featured a lot of Snake. What do you guys think? Could Rising be completely Snake free? What are your thoughts on this game, now that a full year has gone by? Keep in mind that this is just a rumor, but it’s puzzling none the less.

Source: VG247

GameCop Vs LameCop Vs PsychoCop: E3 Edition!

It’s been a couple of months, and many of you left feedback that you love the GameCop vs LameCop vs PsychoCop feature, so we thought we’d do an honorary E3 rumor edition!

If you’re unfamiliar with this feature, we discuss gaming issues and we switch roles each time. The GameCop is looking out for you, the gamer, while the LameCop is just what he sounds like: kind of a lamewad. Meanwhile, PsychoCop is a troll in every sense of the word, and completely bat poop insane.

In honor of next week’s E3, we have a completely intellectual debate regarding the status of several E3 rumors, including Hulu coming to the XBox 360, Rockstar pulling out of E3, and Valve’s special showing.

Continue reading GameCop Vs LameCop Vs PsychoCop: E3 Edition!

GamerSushi Asks: What Are YOUR E3 2010 Predictions?

E3 2010E3 2010 is a mere two weeks away, and the excitement for gaming’s annual gala is building to a fevered pitch. If you listened to our first podcast from a few weeks ago, then you’ll know that we’re all pretty excited about this year’s E3. We offered up a few predictions about what the Big Three are going to be bringing to the table, but we’d love to hear what you guys are thinking about.

Predicting reveals or big surprises is always fun, and once E3 rolls around we’ll collect them in one big post and see who was right on the money and who was way, way off (PS4?). Since you already know what we’ve put our money on, we thought that we’d make a post to let you guys sound off on what you think this year’s big news will be at E3. Gears of War, Move, Natal, a new Zelda? Let us know!

Before you get to speculating, we would just like to mention that the weeks leading up to E3 are usually plagued by rumors, half-truths and damn lies, so don’t expect us to post on every single piece of news that comes out. Most of them are unsubstantiated rumors, but if something huge comes up, we’ll probably let you know about it. Alright, with that out of the way, get to your predicting!

Rumor: Mass Effect Going Multiplayer?

mass effect mmo rumor

Mass Effect 2 is one of the premier games of this year, and indeed, this generation. While the game could stand a bit of a slimming down in some areas (pre-patch mining being a good example), what could BioWare add to future iterations of the series? If you suggested multiplayer, it looks like you’re on the same page as the revered WRPG developers, as they’ve recently posted a few job openings for their Montreal, Quebec studio advertising Multiplayer Programmer positions.

Part of the job will be taking “existing single player experiences and making them multiplayer safe”, and ensuring that “the game engine and game systems work reliably and efficiently in a multiplayer environment.” While the job listing doesn’t state what kind of multiplayer the Mass Effect developers have in mind, it seems pretty clear that the studio is going to be making the jump very soon.

The posting doesn’t out and out say that Mass Effect 3 will be going online, but I wouldn’t rule anything out in that regard. Mass Effect 2’s engine was really, really solid so it could probably handle co-op play. Further speculation could point to a Mass Effect MMO, and, to use a term Eddy once coined, that very thought gives me a mind boner.

So, what do you guys think? Are you on board, and what do you predict will come of this? Is Mass Effect 3 going to have Team Deathmatch, or is this more of a long term goal for the series?

Edit: The posting has since been updated to exclude the mention of Mass Effect, so here’s the original blurb, to clear up any confusion:

We are working on Mass Effect, one of the industry’s most beloved and acclaimed franchises, as we build our way toward becoming a fully self-sufficient BioWare studio. If you want to help us achieve our mission of delivering the best story-driven games in the world, and you dream of being part of a dynamic, talented and focused team, now is the time to get onboard.

Source: Kotaku

Team Ico Collection Coming to Blu-Ray

Team Ico CollectionOK, I figured I would contrast that sad gaming news from earlier with something super badass, so I now bring a pretty awesome piece of news that’s been floating around. We all know that Team Ico makes great games, including both Ico and Shadow of the Colossus from the PS2 days. They are also working on the highly anticipated Last Guardian for the PS3, which I simply can not wait for well.

Well, it looks like they’re going to have another PS3 release early 2011 in the form of the Team Ico Collection, which will consist of Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, running on the PS3 in glorious HD. To me, this is one of the coolest things I’ve heard in a while, as I simply loved SotC, and never really got to actually play Ico (though I watched my best friend play through a bit of it).

I really love the trend that Sony’s been on lately of packaging last gen games together for people to play them on their next gen system, like the God of War Collection. Now I’m just holding onto hope for one that includes Metal Gear Solid 3. Fingers crossed.

In addition to that, someone on NeoGAF has posted mock-ups of Ico running in HD through a PC emulator, and they are simply gorgeous. Go check them out!

So what do you guys think of this news? Who played the first games? Go!

Source- TheSixAxis

Sad Gaming News is Sad

Sad ClockWell, in the last 24 hours, there are two kind of sad pieces of gaming information that have come across the Intertubes. Not like, cry-your-eyes-out sad, but not happy nonetheless.

The first comes from Mark Hamill, Luke Skywalker himself, concerning his voicing of the Joker. He has reportedly said that Batman: Arkham Asylum 2 will be the last time he ever voices the character, which is pretty crazy. I think the guy probably has the best Joker voice out of any of the movies or animated series out there, so it’s a bit melancholy to hear that he’s hanging up the spurs. Or the clown shoes. I suppose that means no Joker in B:AA 3?

The second pieces of news makes my heart hurt a little. You all know of my great love for Beyond Good and Evil, last gen’s Zelda-esque sci fi/fantasy adventure by Ubisoft. For years now, the sequel has been in development, but besides a brief teaser trailer, we’ve had no news of the game. Well, there seems to be a bit of a reason for that, as creator Michael Ancel has parted ways with Ubisoft. The future of the game is now in doubt.

So what do you guys think about these items? Who else needs a hanky?

Source- IGN and NeoGAF

Analyst Predicts Closure of Infinity Ward

closedI honestly can’t remember the last time that we’ve videogame industry drama on the scale that we have been seeing lately with Activision and Infinity Ward. If you’ve somehow missed out on all the craziness: several weeks ago, studio heads Zampella and West of Infinity Ward were Order 66’d. Some crazy allegations launched out from both Activision and Zampella and West, who went on to start Respawn, which was then bought up by EA.

In the wake of this insanity, many employees of IW have been jumping ship, with some of them going to join Respawn with their former bosses. In addition to that, some employees have filed a lawsuit against Activision, claiming that hundreds of millions in royalties were owed. Add to that the fact that yesterday, Activision Publishing President and CEO Mike Griffith is stepping down from his post, and you have quite the poostorm going on.

Naturally, this has lead to some concerns about the future of Infinity Ward in the hands of Activision, and now industry analyst Mike Hickey is predicting that the studio will close after the next map pack is released. According to big Mike:

We expect Infinity Ward studio will be essentially closed after their next map pack release, with development work on Modern Warfare 3 spread between two studios not historically tied to the franchise.

And there you have it. While this is just an analyst’s prediction, and to be taken with a grain of salt, it definitely rings true with what some have no doubt thought about. So what do you guys think of this whole drama? Even though I’m sure that there is much wrong on both sides of the camp, all of this stuff really makes Activision look pretty bad, and like they squandered their golden goose.

Source- Gamasutra