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GDC 2009

Metal Gear Solid... Raiden?

If you've followed the Live Blog of the Kojima's GDC 2009 Keynote, you might be asking yourself, "What's the deal with the last startling images of the presentation?".

After a rousing speech taking audience members through the entire Metal Gear franchise the last image we were left with was a bold still which reads "Mission: The Next MGS". Furthermore, planted in the top right corner of the still is a clear impression of the cyber ninja Raiden (close-up after the cut):

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If you're unlucky enough to be missing the Game Developers Conference this week, you've missed the excitement of Nintendo's keynote address, where head honcho Satoru Iwata delivered many important announcements, including the revelation of the next Zelda game and lots of other juicy Nintendo info.

Don't despair if you've missed out. We've got you covered with a video of the speech...well, video of the first five minutes of the speech, anyway; that's all Nintendo would give up. Check it out below:

GDC 09: Satoru Iwata Nintendo Keynote Intro »


Now that you've had a taste, check out our live blog. It's a minute-by-minute, blow-by-blow account of everything that went down during Iwata's keynote.

Ratchet & Clank Future

Insomniac Games and Sony revealed the next game in the Ratchet & Clank series today. Ratchet & Clank Future: A Crack in Time will conclude the story that began with Ratchet & Clank Future: Tools of Destruction and continued in Ratchet & Clank Future: Quest for Booty. The game comes out this fall for the PlayStation 3, and, according to Insomniac's James Stevenson, it will be a "full retail Blu-ray release." No more downloadable Ratchet & Clank adventures, folks; it's back to the big leagues for the critically lauded duo. Here's how Sony describes the plot of this sci-fi, time travel adventure:

"After discovering that lovable robot Clank’s disappearance was engineered by Dr. Nefarious, the Wrench-swinging Ratchet races to save his best friend. Along the way, both will finally uncover the hidden truth behind their origins, and discover their ultimate destinies."

Ultimate destinies, eh? That's some heady stuff for a video game comedy team... but time travel? I'm hooked.

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Call of Duty

According to a listing from the European game ratings board PEGI (via a post on the NeoGAF forum), the original Call of Duty has been submitted for a rating and will be available on the PlayStation Network and Xbox LIVE in the future.

Activision's first-person combat game, originally released in 2003, was critically lauded and earned a number of awards, including the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences 2004 Game of the Year.

While I (and probably most of you) remember this game incredibly fondly, I wonder how the downloadable version will hold up against today's games. Have things changed so much in gaming in the last five or so that this game will be a letdown? Is it better to just let older games stay in the past where we can remember how awesome they were? Or will the original Call of Duty still be as suspenseful, action-packed and remarkable as we remember? We'll all know for sure when the game comes out.

Speaking of which, since this isn't an "official" announcement, there isn't any word on price or release date, but if it came out around the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 on November 10th, I wouldn't be a bit surprised.

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Known and respected internationally for his skill and dominance as a video game designer, Hideo Kojima is one of the legends. Kojima started his career at Konami in the mid-80's and quickly established himself as a master of the stealth action game genre with his hit Metal Gear franchise.

X-Play's Adam Sessler got the chance to sit down with Kojima to talk about the making of Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots -- the game Kojima vows will be the last in the Metal Gear franchise. In this interview, Kojima also reflects on what it was like designing the game exclusively for the PlayStation 3, the perceived limitations of the console versus what was initially envisioned for the game, MGS 4's storyline and its relationship to current world events and what goes into designing well-balanced gameplay.

X-Play's GDC coverage, including this interview, continues tonight at 6:30 PM.

GDC 09: 'X-Play' All Access with Hideo Kojima »


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WarioWare Snapped!One of the innovations of Nintendo's upcoming DSi is "DSiWare," a feature similar to WiiWare that allows users to download games over the Internet. At GDC yesterday, Nintendo revealed a bunch of downloadable DSi titles slated to launch along with the DSi on April 5th.

  • Opera Browser -- This app is a free download. It's an upgraded version of the Internet browser already available for the Nintendo DS.
  •  WarioWare Snapped! -- A collection of mini-games that use the DSi's internal camera. 
  • Art Style: Aquia --  A "match three" puzzle game where players swap blocks off a three-tile-thick stack and try to match up the same colors to make them disappear.
  • Bird and Beans -- This title takes the two Pyoro games from past WarioWare titles and combines them into a single downloadable file. Basically, these are simple arcade games where players get Pyoro to eat beans as they fall from the sky.

In Japan, WarioWare Snapped! and Art Style: Aquia each cost 500 Nintendo Points (5 bucks) and Bird and Beans can be yours for two dollars, but U.S. prices have not been announced. Regardless of the cost, Nintendo plans to reward everyone who buys an "early" DSi. Everyone who purchases a DSi and goes online by October 5th, 2009 will be given 1000 Nintendo Points for free. Spend wisely, my son.

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Eyes and ears, boys and girls. Infinity Ward and Activision drop the first TEASER for Modern Warfare 2. There's a definite reason for all the emphasis in Teaser. Join the horde of fans decoding the video as you read this, which features occasional visuals with a significant amount of audio clues. One thing is clear, however, the game has been slated for a November 10 release.

So close your eyes, put on your head phones and take a listen and give us your best theories of what's going on in the comments section.

Modern Warfare 2 Cryptic Teaser

Modern Warfare 2 Cryptic Teaser »


'God of War 3' Footage Leaks Onto Internet

A nefarious attendee of this year's Game Developers Conference decided to do evil by taking shaky-cam video footage of upcoming PlayStation 3 epic action game God of War III. When will game companies learn that everything always leaks everywhere? If you want people to get the best look at your game, you should just post the damn video instead of letting it slip out in low-quality, shot-off-the-screen style?

(Spoilers, ahead! beware!) Low quality or not, Kratos battling a giant cyclops by riding around on his head and slashing with a flaming sword can only be described as "badass." I'm not going to embed the video, as it's a little clandestine and it might be pulled soon, but here's the link

Does this game look amazing or what? I'm speechless. Perhaps you're not. Leave your impressions below.

God of War III is a PlayStation 3 exclusive. Reportedly, the game's release date will be revealed at E3 this year.

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Fallout 3

Fallout 3 was honored with the coveted Game of the Year award  at the Game Developers Choice Awards held last night in San Francisco. Bethesda's post-apocalyptic RPG beat out Fable II, Left 4 Dead, LittleBigPlanet and Grand Theft Auto IV for the honor. LittleBigPlanet took home the most awards -- Sony's PS3 platformer won nearly half of all the prizes given out, taking home four out of ten awards. Nice work!

The Developers Choice Awards (unlike, say, The People's Choice awards) are voted on by professionals, fellow developers, so you have to figure winning one of these babies is particularly satisfying -- there's nothing like the appreciation of one's peers! Congratulations to all winners and nominees.

Reading about an awards show and watching it are two different things. To watch G4's coverage of the ceremony, tune in or TiVo The GDC Awards on G4: Friday April 10th at 6:30pm.

Underneath the cut is the full list of victors, as well as the also-rans, in each category. The winners are emboldened.

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GDC 2009: Punch-Out!! for Nintendo Wii »


 

Back when it was released for the original NES, Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! provided one of the most challenging and enjoyable experiences on the system. From the ridiculously difficult battles with Iron Mike, to the matches with quirky fighters such as King Hippo and Soda Pop Pinski, few games had as much personality as Nintendo's classic boxer.

Now, with the game being updated and brought to the Wii with motion controls, a whole new generation of gamers will be exposed to the fun that can be had in the Punch-Out!! series. In the above walkthrough video, Nintendo of America product acquisition specialist Todd Buchele shows off the newly announced character, Disco Kid, while demoing the game's motion controls and familiar game mechanics such as Little Mac's devastating star punch.

 

GDC 2009 Daily Wrap-Up 03.25.09 »


 

Things really got rolling today at GDC 2009 as the show floor opened and Nintendo President Satoru Iwata delivered his keynote speech. Between touting Nintendo's recent success, giving away a free game to the crowd, and announcing The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, Iwata's speech covered a lot of ground.

You can read all about Iwata's keynote in our live blog, but you can also get thoughtful analysis on where Satoru hit the mark and where he may have fallen short in the above video featuring commentary from Adam Sessler, Billy Berghammer, and Ray Padilla.

Plus, if you want more GDC coverage, you can read our previews of Fat Princess and R.U.S.E., and watch trailers from Ninja Gaiden Sigma 2, Punch-Out!!, and the new Zelda game. Be sure to keep your eyes on G4tv.com tomorrow when we bring you live blog coverage of Hideo Kojima's keynote, as well as all the news and previews from the conference you can handle.

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Nearly every gamer on the planet has experienced some type of game that was created using Epic's Unreal Engine. Looking to continue their industry popularity with game developers Epic unleashed a slew of new features to their Unreal Engine 3. To illustrate the engine's details in slick Epic Game fashion is a new trailer highlighting all the powerful new tools in action.

From the dynamic global illumnation tool Lightmass, to PS3 downloadable content support be sure to check the official features listing after the break.

Unreal ENGINE 3 GDC 2009 Features Trailer

 

Unreal Engine 3 New Features GDC 2009 Trailer »


 

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Stardock LogoIt doesn't have the high-profile of the "Console Wars" or Mac Vs. PC battles, but there's another important fight going on in the world of gaming. As you may know, Steam, Valve's PC game download service, is on top of the heap when it comes to digital distribution of games. But it's not the only service in town. Tech company Stardock has its own system of distributing games -- Impulse.

Both services look different -- Impulse is a little flashier than strictly-business Steam -- but today, Stardock announced an update to improve its network. Stardock's new technology aims to solve some all-too-common digital distribution problems and offers some advantages over Steam.

This is a little tech-y, so work with me a bit, but here's the deal on Stardock's new technology. It's called Game Object Obfuscation (Goo), and it allows developers to encapsulate its game executable into a container that includes the original executable plus "Impulse Reactor," Stardock's virtual platform. Both are contained in one encrypted file.

When a consumer runs a game for the first time, Goo lets the user enter his/her email address and serial number then associates the game with the person as opposed to the person's computer. Once it's validated, the game need never connect to the Internet again.

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Hands-On: 'Fat Princess'

bleahy
16 Comments

Posted March 25, 2009 - By bleahy

Hands-On: Fat Princess

Fat Princess should be, by all accounts, the PlayStation Network's own Castle Crashers. It's cartoon style is accessible to all, but is full of bloody mayhem. The class system holds an incredible amount of depth and proper teamwork goes a long way. Putting 32 players on a peer-to-peer connection with voice chat is nice, too.

For those that don't know, Fat Princess is a 16-on-16 class-based multiplayer game (though bots are available) that tasks players with rescuing their princess from the enemy dungeon. The five classes are: worker, warrior, archer, mage, and priest. Workers are the key to getting the advantage as they can collect resources to upgrade the "hat machines" that allow players to choose their class.

As you fight to the doors of the enemy castle, you'll gain points for kills and fight to control towers which can be occupied by friendly archers to gain a height advantage on the battlefield. If you die, a short respawn timer sets you back a few seconds, allowing the winning force to advance their position.

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Guitar Hero: Metallica

Hot off the imaginary presses: I've just learned from our man in the field at GDC, Brian Leahy, that Activision is joining Sony to create a Guitar Hero themed area in PlayStation Home. They're calling it "Backstage with Guitar Hero."

The spot will feature Guitar Hero style graphics, and a mini-game, where the goal is to beat the "God of Rock" in ten rounds of riff-Simon. You use the four PS3 face buttons to play. Nice!

Also, the Home space will feature two closed-off VIP areas. Sony and Activision vow to work with fans to determine what will go in those spaces in the future.

You can visit the new space when it launches to the public tomorrow.

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