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GN Unplugged: The Art of Blizzard
Review by: Travis Huinker
The perfect coffee table book for Blizzard enthusiasts. READ FULL REVIEW...
GN Unplugged: The Art of Blizzard
Review by: Travis Huinker
The perfect coffee table book for Blizzard enthusiasts. READ FULL REVIEW...
GN Unplugged: The Legend of Zelda: Hyrule Historia
Article by: Jeremy Duff
Jeremy finally gets his hands on the formerly Japanese-exclusive Hyrule Historia. READ FULL ARTICLE...

Hit the links with Tiger early! TW14 Demo now available!

by: Sean Cahill - - Add a Comment
With the weather starting to curve towards spring, even with random snowstorms still hitting the country, golfers around the world are already turning their attention to the PGA Tour, and gamers that enjoy hitting the links can now dive into the demo of Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14.  Available both on Xbox 360 and Playstation 3, the major enhancement this year will be the Legends of the Majors mode that is a feature challenge at various courses around the world throughout the decades of majors.  Taking on courses such as Augusta National, Royal Birkdale, St. Andrews, and many other legendary courses, are all expected to make an appearance in this year's version.  Make sure you download the demo before the launch date in just a few short weeks!

News Roundup - 03/04/2013

by: Jeremy - - Add a Comment

Now Loading for March 4, 2013: Take Your Pick Edition

by: Jeremy - - Add a Comment
We’re going to do things a little differently this week and from now on with the Now Loading feature. In addition to highlighting the full list of official releases for a given week, we’re going to give our picks of the top 3 titles of the week as well, along with a little more information about those games.

This is a huge week for the industry and simply the start of what will be a gigantic month. March has an incredibly line up and it is coming out of the games swinging! There are plenty of choices for you this week, but you might want to pay special attention to the following games (in no particular order):

Tomb Raider: Everything old is new again, or at least it is this week. The original video game vixen is back this week with the reboot of Tomb Raider for both the Xbox 360 and PS3. Lara is back but not exactly in the way we all remember her. This time around we’re going back in time and learning Ms. Croft’s origin story and seeing exactly what made her into the badass, gun-toting adventurer that took the world by storm on the original PlayStation.

The reviews of the game started hitting last week and have been giving the game constant praise. The new vision of Lara appears to be greatly appreciated as the focus is now on great story telling and excellent gameplay rather than just a hot girl with with guns. Our own review is coming soon and let’s just say that our own Cyril was very impressed. You will definitely want to put this one on your list of games to check out!

SimCity: See, I told you that everything old was new again! The second big title this week is another reboot of a classic series with the relaunch of SimCity on PC’s. EA and the developer Maxis are ready to make the series a staple on the PC platform once again thanks to an entirely new game engine and the inclusion of a new, multiplayer component. John and Travis had a blast with the beta version earlier this year and Travis will be bringing you our official review of the game in the very near future.

MLB 13 The Show: Personally, I love the landscape of the sporting game genre in our industry. Instead of one company producing what are considered the best games with each different sport, we have a variety. Madded / EA are the obvious leaders (and only option) when it comes to the NFL; 2K has a monarchy on the NBA franchise; and Sony may be the title holder for the MLB. This week will see releases of new MLB games from both Sony and 2K but Sony’s “The Show” series has taken the edge in the past couple of years. This year’s edition launches this week with cross save features supported in both the PS3 and Vita versions of the game. We have both versions in-house currently and are running them through the review process, so look forward to seeing those very shortly (heads up, it appears to be as solid as ever).

Full listing of this week’s releases:

Weekend News Roundup - 03/03/2013

by: Jeremy - - Add a Comment
3/1/2013 3/2/2013 3/3/2013

EA iOS Free Code Giveaway #9: Skate It

by: Dan - - Add a Comment
It’s time for the EA iOS code giveaway #9 of the weekend: Skate It.  The code is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad running iOS 3.0 or later.  If you are the lucky winner that redeems the code first, please let us know in the comments.
 

Rock Band DLC continue its swan song with singles from Chili Peppers, Blink-182 and A-AR

by: Dan - - Add a Comment
As we continue to count down the demise of Rock Band DLC in April, Harmonix is giving us three more singles from the previously released Rock Band Blitz for DLC next week.  As our own Cyril Lachel has said repeatedly, unless you only want  one of these specific songs, invest the 1200 MS Points for the entire Rock Band Blitz game and its 20 track catalog instead of buying the songs piecemeal.  However, if you only want these songs, you can pick them up for  $1.99\160 MS Pts\200 Wii Pts per track as well as the option to add on Pro Guitar/Pro Bass upgrade for $0.99\80 MS pts\100 Wii per song.
 
Here are the tracks Available on March 5th, 2013: 
  • All-American Rejects – “Kids in the Street” O
  • Blink-182 – “Always” O
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers – “Give It Away” O X
Tracks marked with “O” feature support for keyboards; tracks marked with “X” will offer Pro Guitar and Pro Bass expansions for $0.99 per song.
[READ MORE]

What We're Playing This Weekend for 3/1/2013

by: Randy - - Add a Comment
RUSSELL ARCHEY, staff writer, Twitter @neoscyther
I'm still working through Skyrim, though I'm focusing less on the story missions right now and trying to clear out any side quests I have as well as do some skill leveling, mainly in destruction and enchanting.

SEAN CAHILL, staff writer, Twitter @seancahill2
Trying to get through Far Cry 3, but having a hell of a time getting through one particular campaign because it's an escort/rescue mission and the guy keeps running into land mines.

NATHAN CARTER, staff writer, Twitter @natedoggcata
Left 4 Dead 2 and probably more Left 4 Dead 2. The Steam Workshop has pretty much gotten me addicted to this game again. I’m having tons of fun downloading and playing through brand new campaigns. If I have some spare time I’ll try to play though the Silent Hill HD Collection. I’m interested in seeing how many problems this game actually has, or how many I’ll notice, at least. Finally, I’ll try to get my party through the Organ Trail on iOS. It’s an Apple IIc version of the original Oregon Trail, except it’s set in a modern-day zombie apocalypse and it’s very addicting.

NATHANIEL COHEN, staff writer, Twitter @seven_hells
Still playing XCOM: Enemy Unknown, but I probably play some Final Fantasy XIII-2. My daughter spent the last of her Christmas money on it. After burning out on the Dead Space vertical playthough, I could use some shiny fantastical insanity. The Dead Space series is so damn dark, scary, and kind of sad. Playing all three games at once only made it more so.

JEREMY DUFF, senior staff writer, Twitter @duff3c
I am sort of on a PC gaming kick right now and am looking forward to getting some quality Battlefield 3 time in between spending time on the new Halo 4 maps that launched this week. Of course, my Vita will get some love as I am on the go throughout the weekend.

CHARLES HUSEMANN, editor-in-chief, Twitter @chusemann
This weekend will be the usual snippets of Black Ops 2 and MechWarrior Online interspersed with The Bridge, a cool new indie puzzle game.

RANDY KALISTA, staff writer, Twitter @randykalista
Somewhere between Mass Effect 3's N7 Challenge Weekend and my three-year-old daughter's 10,000th YouTube viewing of Swan Lake, my Xbox 360 red ringed. Again. I'm exclusively PC gaming for the next two or three weeks while my console's in the shop. So, assessing my mental fortitude as a grown adult, I figure it's time to man up to the final episode of The Walking Dead. Then that's that. At least until this season 1.5 business that's purportedly on the way. Then I'll have to see if I'm up for even more emotional beat downs.

MIKE MAHARDY, staff writer, Twitter @mmahardy
I'll be playing more FTL, as I still have yet to complete a single campaign. I keep losing/dying, but it's the best feeling to get farther each time. Aside from that, I'll be playing through BioShock and BioShock 2 in preparation for BioShock Infinite later in March. If that's not one of my most anticipated games in awhile then I don't know what is.

News Roundup - 02/28/2013

by: Jeremy - - Add a Comment

THQ to put some unsold properties up for auction

by: Nathaniel - - Add a Comment
Are you a fan of Darksiders, Red Faction, Homeworld, or MX vs. ATV?  

If you are, then you were certainly saddened to learn that those properties were not sold during THQ's liquidation.  Have hope, however, because what remains of THQ will put several of its unsold properties up for auction.  The franchises and other owned or licensed software will be broken up into lots and sold in chunks.  

Lot 1 is contains Red Faction, Red Faction 2, Red Faction Armageddon, and Red Faction: Guerrilla.

Lot 2 contains Homeworld and Homeworld 2.

Lot 3 is a big one.  It includes MX Alive, Mx Superfly featuring Ricky Carmichael, MX Unleashed, MX vs ATV Reflex, MX vs ATV Untamed, MX vs ATV Alive Tournament, MX vs. ATV Unleashed, and MX vs ATV: On The Edge.

Lot 4 is Darksiders and Darksiders 2.

Lot 5 is huge.  Highlights include Frontlines: Fuel of War, both Full Spectrum Warrior games, all four Destroy All Humans! games, and uDraw among many others you'll find after the jump.

Lot 6 is similar in size.  Its highlights include Supreme Commander and Supreme Commander Forged Alliance, Worms 2, Worms Battle Islands, Worms Open Warfare, Worms: A Space Oddity, and Worms: Open Warfare 2 (Team 17).  Again, you can find the full list after the jump.

If you're interested in bidding, you can find the deadlines and requirements after the jump (basically you can't just be some dude who wants to "own" a videogame franchise).

Bidding and final sales should conclude by mid-May. [READ MORE]

News Roundup - 02/27/2013

by: Jeremy - - Add a Comment

LEGO Batman coming to the WiiU

by: Nathaniel - - Add a Comment
Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes was met with much acclaim when it hit PC and current gen consoles last year.  In the absence of the long rumored Justice League film, Lego Batman 2: DC Super Heroes has to be the next best thing - maybe not as "next-best" as a non-lego version of the same game with mature production values, but you get the idea.

Anyway, it's going to be coming to the Wii U later this year (right now, they're saying "spring").  The Wii U's GamePad controller will allow players to navigate a fully-explorable Gotham City thanks to an enhanced map, or you can simply play it on the GamePad controller.  You'll even be able to play co-op where one player uses the TV and the other uses the GamePad controller.  That's a nice feature, if you ask me.

To learn more, follow the jump. [READ MORE]

News Roundup - 02/26/2013

by: John - - Add a Comment
 

News Roundup - 02/25/2013

by: Jeremy - - Add a Comment

Weekend News Roundup - 02/24/2013

by: Jeremy - - Add a Comment
02/22/2013 02/23/2013 02/24/2013

The Flys, Queensryche and Staind coming to Rock Band

by: Nathan - - Add a Comment
Its very sad that we are slowly nearing the end of weekly Rock Band DLC but I don't thin anyone can really complain that much since they have been doing it pretty much for 6 years now. In any case some more tracks are coming to the Rock Band music store on Tuesday and we will be seeing singles from The Flys, Queensryche and Staind.

The tracks are....
  • The Flys - Got You (Where I Want You) "X"
  • Queensryche - Silent Lucidity "O"
  • Staind - It's Been Awhile
  • Staind - So Far Away "O"
All tracks will be $1.99 each (160 Microsoft Points, 200 Wii Points) 
Tracks marked with "O" will feature keyboard support and tracks marked with "X" will feature a Pro Guitar/Pro Bass upgrade for $0.99 (80 Microsoft Points, 100 Wii Points) 

The tracks will be available February 26th on all systems and February 27th in Europe. 


?


 

What We're Playing This Weekend for 2/22/2013

by: Randy - - Add a Comment
RUSSELL ARCHEY, staff writer
I'll probably be trying to finish up Skyrim, or at least getting to the final act. Last time I played the game crashed to the desktop four minutes after I did a quick save. Provided it plays nice, I'll probably give it some major attention this weekend.

SEAN CAHILL, staff writer, Twitter @seancahill2
My gaming has been locked up by FIFA Soccer 13 and Far Cry 3, lately. I find myself continuing to play online with Ultimate Team in FIFA, while Far Cry tortures me time and time again with various wild animals while I'm attempting to complete a goal. Frustrating, but it makes it far more challenging.

NATHAN CARTER, staff writer, Twitter @natedoggcata
Probably more Left 4 Dead 2 on the PC. The steam workshop is such a great thing. I am having so much fun downloading tons of new and unique campaigns, character skins, weapons and more. Hell I hate leaving the safe room cause I love listening to the Resident Evil save room soundtracks that I downloaded from the workshop as well. Other than that I might also hop in some Counter-Strike: Source to play some more Deathrun maps. Its like the TV Wipeout only...in CSS! 

NATHANIEL COHEN, staff writer, Twitter @seven_hells
I finally got around to trying XCOM: Enemy Unknown. Lovin' it. I name all my soldiers after Game of Thrones characters. I'm also doing a "vertical playthrough" of the Dead Space trilogy. "Vertical playthrough" is what I call it when you take a trilogy of games and play one level/chapter/whatever of the first game, then do the same for the second, then do the same for the third, and then you start back with the first one and so on and so forth. Dead Space lends itself well to vertical playthroughs because it's got those clear chapter delineations. Doing so really paints the each games differences in stark relief.

JEREMY DUFF, senior staff writer, Twitter @duff3c
Assuming that I get some time to sink into some games for fun this weekend, I will likely spend a few more hours on the free-to-play Path of Exile, getting my loot gathering fix. Other than that, I really need to start Batman: Arkham City which has been collecting dust in my cabinet since it launched, and wrap up Uncharted 3 which has been half-finished for well over a year.

CHARLES HUSEMANN, editor in chief, Twitter @chusemann
Currently playing more Black Ops 2 PC multiplayer than I care to admit. Just too easy to drop in few a few quick rounds between chores around the house. Also playing a lot of MechWarrior Online and Temple Run 2. Need to scope some time to wrap up Dead Space 3 and get caught up with Halo 4's Spartan Ops.

RANDY KALISTA, staff writer, Twitter @randykalista
Is twelve months late too late to be fashionably late? That's where I'm at with Mass Effect 3. On the upside, I bought the Firefight Pack, Groundside Resistance Pack, and Alternate Appearance Pack 1. There's entirely too much game ahead of me to even consider the big single-player DLC stuff like Omega, Leviathan, From Ashes, or the recently teased Silversun Strip. But this is the pulpy kind of sci-fi I'm absolutely dying for right now.

MIKE MAHARDY, staff writer, Twitter @mmahardy
I'll be playing through Serious Sam DD XXL on XBLA cooperatively this weekend (it's very fun in all of the craziest, best ways) and also playing Metal Gear Rising insert really, really stupid noun here. Super Mario Galaxy 2 is just as amazing as it has always been, and it's never a bad time to play FTL: Faster Than Light when I'm craving that strange feeling of helplessness combined with pure euphoria. God, I love FTL.

JOHN YAN, senior hardware editor, Twitter @thejohnyan
Diablo 3Black Ops 2 multiplayer.
 

News Roundup - 02/21/2013

by: Jeremy - - Add a Comment

News Roundup - 02/19/2013 & 02/20/2013

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Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 focuses online.

by: Sean Cahill - - Add a Comment
The Tiger Woods franchise has really exploded in the last few years, especially with finally adding in The Masters major championship that features Augusta National in Georgia.  So, what exactly is left for the franchise to work on?  According to EA Sports, there is plenty that can still be improved upon.  Taking the focus of online and social networking, the familiar Country Club membership that gamers saw last year will now be revamped, with the membership number increasing as well as loyalty bonuses and a tour.  Of course, there is more to it than just focusing on online gameplay, but with launch day rapidly approaching at the end of March, one can bet that players want as much information as possible before the game drops on March 26. [READ MORE]

News Roundup - 02/18/2013

by: Jeremy - - Add a Comment

More details on the demise of Rock Band DLC

by: Dan - - Add a Comment
I am sure some of us are a little bit shocked (although we probably shouldn't be) that after five plus years, Harmonix is shutting off the amp on Rock Band.  In order to stave off some of the many questions, Harmonix provided a separate Q&A section in the forums today to cover some of the questions that came about after their announcement that DLC will discontinue for Rock Band after April 2nd.  Some of the topics discussed were the future of Rock Band Network, going to a limited release schedule (monthly), future of Rock Band servers and the bottom line question, Is this the end of Rock Band?  I posted below the full Q&A for those that cannot follow the link:
 
As with the previous announcement regarding the wind down of RB DLC, we’ve tried to address as many of the expected questions in a convenient FAQ. You’ll find a number of anticipated topics addressed below, and we’ll be on hand to respond to other questions in this discussion thread. Hopefully this FAQ will serve as a helpful resource for people looking for more info.

1. Is this the end of Rock Band?
This is the end of weekly Rock Band DLC. Rock Band remains an essential part of the history of Harmonix, and the franchise will always be near and dear to our hearts. We don’t have any Rock Band titles in active development at the moment, and we’ll no longer be releasing weekly DLC, but you can expect us to continue to support the existing titles and the extensive song library. We’re not breaking up the band, but we are taking a break from 5+ years of weekly performances.

2. Why not switch to a monthly or semi-weekly DLC schedule instead?
As we transition more and more of our resources onto new projects in development, it’s not possible at this time to maintain that kind of regularity in DLC releases. The weekly release schedule is something that we are incredibly proud of, and we’ll be wrapping up DLC with over 275 weeks of consistent releases.

3. Is there any chance you’ll release Rock Band DLC again?
While we’re no longer actively pursuing content for release, we still have the technical capability should the right band and the right opportunity arise. We don’t have anything planned for release at the moment, but it’s not something we’ve ruled out.

4. Will the Rock Band Network continue to release content on a regular basis?
The current plan is for Harmonix to continue to support the backend technology that powers Rock Band Network on the Xbox 360 for the foreseeable future. Users on the Xbox 360 should be able to submit new content, test, and release as they have been for the last 3 years. It's important to note that this architecture relies on other technologies not directly in Harmonix's control, including the XNA architecture for submission. In the event that our ability to keep RBN up and running changes, we'll make sure to let everyone in the Creators community know with as much lead time as possible.

Unfortunately, PS3 submissions for RBN tracks are submitted in the same manner as standard Harmonix-released DLC and require constant Harmonix production attention. As a result, the last PS3 RBN release planned on our schedule is on April 2nd.

5. Are you shutting down Rock Central servers?
Rock Central servers, leaderboards, and the Music Store should continue to run without interruption for the foreseeable future.

6. What does this mean for the RockBand.com community on the forums?
We hope that RockBand.com will remain a meeting place for fans of the series. The forums will stay open, and posters can still expect to see Harmonix devs answering questions and engaging in conversation. Some outdated site features will likely be phased out in the coming weeks, and we’ll address those changes as they happen.

7. What will happen with Rock Band World and the content posted there?
Parts of Rock Band World will remain operational, but with weekly DLC ending we will no longer be updating with weekly Goals and Tournaments. We may update with additional Goals in the future, but they will be significantly less frequent.

8. What are you going to show on the livestreams in place of weekly DLC?
The livestreams have always been a platform for Harmonix content and we plan to continue on the same weekly schedule. We hope to use the livestream to showcase new Harmonix titles as we get closer to release, but it’s still likely we’ll be discussing Rock Band in some way, whether it’s running through the extensive back catalog, or interviewing devs, or hosting Q&As with the community. You can subscribe to the livestream here: twitch.tv/harmonixmusic

9. Do you have some big, crazy, extra special thing planned for the final DLC release?
We have DLC scheduled through the next few weeks, including what we feel is an appropriate track for the final release on April 2nd. Just prior to that, on Thursday March 21st, we’ll be hosting a big Rock Band show in Boston to coincide with PAX East. This event will be held at the Brattle Theater in Harvard Square, and it is open to non-PAX attendees as well, so keep posted for ticket preorder info in the next few days. Hopefully we’ll see a lot of you there!

10. What about these new IPs you’re working on? Are any of them Rock Band related / instrument based music games?
Harmonix has several new projects in the works, but unfortunately no Rock Band news at the moment. You can stay tuned to HarmonixMusic.com for future project announcements.

After reading through this Q&A, it sure sounds like this is the end, but the door was left open slightly if the right opportunity came along (for example, if Jimmy Page and Robert Plant wanted to develop a stand alone Led Zeppelin title, oh please god let this happen).

Harmonix to end weekly Rock Band DLC releases on April 2nd

by: Dan - - Add a Comment
After 275 weeks, Harmonix has decided to pull the plug on the weekly release of DLC for the Rock Band family of games after April 2nd release.  In a Blog post today, the staff announced the decision and why it is happening.  In a nutshell, all good things must come to an end and the Rock Band team will continue to support the forums, web pages twitter and Facebook accounts.  However, after the remainder of the Rock Band Blitz tracks, a few Pro Upgrades and a couple of new artists are released, it looks like this is the end of the road.  I pasted the full text of the post below for those that cannot link to it.
 
As you may have seen in our recent announcement regarding the release of Rock Band Blitz tracks as singles, Rock Band DLC production has gradually slowed over the past five years. We have managed to maintain a consistent release schedule for a staggering 275 consecutive weeks, releasing over 4,000 songs for the Rock Band Platform, but in recent months we’ve scaled production down as we’ve transitioned resources onto other projects. With several new titles in development and developers needed to usher these new games along, April 2nd will be the last weekly DLC release for Rock Band.

While there is no content currently scheduled beyond April 2nd, we still have DLC releases lined up for the next few weeks, including the remaining tracks from Rock Band Blitz, several Pro Guitar upgrades, and a handful of artists who have not yet appeared in Rock Band. We’re incredibly proud of the DLC milestones we’ve set, especially producing the largest music library of any game available, and we wouldn’t have been able to release as much outstanding content without the support of our amazing community. As thanks to the community, we’re going to continue the ongoing DLC sale of 50% off over 1,100 songs so fans can continue to build their personal libraries from our back catalog.

We hope that you’ll all agree that this has been a tremendous run, and you should know it’s a ride that we at Harmonix have been thrilled to be a part of. We’re going to continue to support the forums and RockBand.com and hope to still see you rocking out online, in photos of Rock Band parties shared on Twitter and Facebook, or here on the forums. Whether you waited in line for a midnight release of Rock Band over 5 years ago, or you just joined the party with Rock Band Blitz… whether you’ve downloaded every single song we’ve ever released, or you’ve just played on disc songs until your neighbors moved away… whether you’re a metal shredder, or a bubblegum pop singer… thank you for being a part of our band.

 
 
Personally, I am a bit torn by this as there was a vast amount of artists and songs that were never tapped for the platform, but my interest as also waned over the last year or so.  Although the blog post sounds like this may be the end of the line, hopefully a break from weekly content will lead to monthly or quarterly releases in the future. 

Weekend News Roundup - 02/17/2013

by: Jeremy - - Add a Comment
2/15/2013 2/16/2013 2/17/2013

Angry Birds Trilogy hits 1 million, coming to Wii and Wii U

by: Sean Colleli - - Add a Comment
Well, it was inevitable. Now that the re-released and HD-ified Angry Bird Trilogy has passed 1 million units sold, it's on its way to the Wii and Wii U sometime this year. Since the game was born on iOS I'm sure it's a perfect fit for the Wii U GamePad's touch screen, and like most freshly-released consoles the Wii U is hurting for new content right now. Doesn't mean I have to like it.

I don't think Angry Birds is a bad game, per se, I'm just already sick of the merchandising, the nakedly consumeristic Star Wars crossover, and most of all, how this rather mediocre physics-flinger sucks attention away from more creative, better made indie games that really need and deserve it. Ironically, Angry Birds reminds of of Wii Sports; a title we hoped would induct a whole new generation of gamers, but instead set the bar so damn low that the so-called new generation stayed there with it, oblivious to all the better, deeper games. Egh. I just hope history doesn't repeat itself on Wii U. [READ MORE]

Harmonix dropping three singles next week for Rock Band DLC

by: Dan - - Add a Comment
Looks like Harmonix is doing a bit of housecleaning next week by releasing three singles from three bands for Rock Band DLC.  Tracks from Barenaked Ladies, Collective Soul, and Fall Out Boy will all be available at the standard $1.99/160 MS Pt/200 Wii Pt price per song.  Only the Barenaked Ladies’ “One Week” will have extra, supporting keyboards.  Those with a Wii will be familiar with it, as it was released on the platform last August, but not on the 360 or PS3.  Here is the complete list:
 
Available on February 19th, 2013: 
Barenaked Ladies – “One Week” O
Collective Soul – “Shine
Fall Out Boy – “A Little Less Sixteen Candles, a Little More ‘Touch Me’”
Tracks marked with “O” feature support for keyboards.

  [READ MORE]